As Amalthaea in 1908
|Namesake:||Eagle (in Scottish Gaelic)|
|Fate:||Wrecked, 1 January 1919|
|Class and type:||Yacht|
His Majesty's Yacht Iolaire for " Eagle ") was an Admiralty yacht that sank with great loss of life at the entrance to Stornoway harbour on the Isle of Lewis on 1 January 1919. The sinking of the yacht, which was originally the Amalthaea but renamed in 1918, was one of the worst maritime disasters in United Kingdom waters during the 20th century. Although the Iolaire struck rocks just yards from shore, at least 201 men out of the 283 people on board perished — most of whom were Royal Navy Reservists returning home at the end of the First World War — because of the appalling weather and sea conditions.(Scottish Gaelic
Eagle is the common name for many large birds of prey of the family Accipitridae. Eagles belong to several groups of genera, not all of which are closely related. Most of the 60 species of eagle are from Eurasia and Africa. Outside this area, just 14 species can be found—2 in North America, 9 in Central and South America, and 3 in Australia.
The Admiralty, originally known as the Office of the Admiralty and Marine Affairs, was the government department responsible for the command of the Royal Navy first in the Kingdom of England, later in the Kingdom of Great Britain, and from 1801 to 1964, the United Kingdom and former British Empire. Originally exercised by a single person, the Lord High Admiral (1385–1628), the Admiralty was, from the early 18th century onwards, almost invariably put "in commission" and exercised by the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, who sat on the Board of Admiralty.
Stornoway is the main town of the Western Isles and the capital of Lewis and Harris in Scotland.
Iolaire was carrying sailors who had fought in the First World War back to the Scottish island of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. She left the port of Kyle of Lochalsh on the mainland late on the evening of 31 December 1918. At 2:30 a.m. on New Year's Day, as the ship approached the port of Stornoway, a few yards offshore and a mile away from the safety of Stornoway Harbour, she hit the infamous rocks "The Beasts of Holm" and sank. Those on board would have been able to see the lights of Stornoway. The death toll was officially put at 205, of whom 181 men were islanders but as the ship was badly overcrowded and there was a lack of proper records, the toll could have been slightly higher. John F. Macleod from Ness, Isle of Lewis, saved 40 lives, swimming ashore with a heaving line, along which many of the survivors made their way to safety. Only 82 of the 283 (officially known) passengers survived the disaster; 71 percent of the people on the yacht perished in the incident. The impact of the disaster was devastating to the Islands; 205 passengers were lost, representing almost an entire generation of young men from the Islands.
World War I, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history. It is also one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide.
Lewis is the northern part of Lewis and Harris, the largest island of the Western Isles or Outer Hebrides archipelago in Scotland. It is also known as the Isle of Lewis, as the two parts are frequently referred to as if they were separate islands. The total area of Lewis is 683 square miles (1,770 km2).
The Outer Hebrides, also known as the Western Isles, Innse Gall or the Long Isle or the Long Island, is an island chain off the west coast of mainland Scotland. The islands are geographically coextensive with Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, one of the 32 unitary council areas of Scotland. They form part of the archipelago of the Hebrides, separated from the Scottish mainland and from the Inner Hebrides by the waters of the Minch, the Little Minch, and the Sea of the Hebrides. Scottish Gaelic is the predominant spoken language, although in a few areas English speakers form a majority.
The sailors were wearing their uniforms including heavy boots, which made swimming from the wreck difficult — indeed many men of that time had never had the opportunity to learn. Many songs and poems, such as An Iolaire, describe the women of these men finding their men washed up on the shore the next day. The sinking is the worst maritime disaster (for loss of life) in United Kingdom waters in peacetime, since the wreck of the SS Norge off Rockall in 1904 and the worst peacetime disaster involving a British ship since Titanic on 15 April 1912.
SSNorge[ˈnɔrɡə] was a Danish passenger liner sailing from Copenhagen, Kristiania and Kristiansand to New York, mainly with emigrants, which sank off Rockall in 1904. It was the biggest civilian maritime disaster in the Atlantic Ocean until the sinking of Titanic eight years later, and is still the largest loss of life from a Danish merchant ship.
Rockall is an uninhabitable granite islet located within the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the United Kingdom, situated in the North Atlantic Ocean and is claimed by the United Kingdom as its territory.
RMS Titanic was a British passenger liner that sank in the North Atlantic Ocean in the early hours of 15 April 1912, after colliding with an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City. There were an estimated 2,224 passengers and crew aboard, and more than 1,500 died, making it one of modern history's deadliest commercial marine disasters during peacetime. RMS Titanic was the largest ship afloat at the time she entered service and was the second of three Olympic-class ocean liners operated by the White Star Line. She was built by the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast. Thomas Andrews, chief naval architect of the shipyard at the time, died in the disaster.
An Admiralty enquiry found no satisfactory explanation for the disaster. Its inconclusive findings generated much ill feeling amongst the Lewis population, amidst accusations of a "whitewash". While drunkenness among the crew was discounted at the enquiry, the vessel was sailing at night, in poor visibility and in deteriorating weather. The entrance to Stornoway harbour is not the most straightforward of navigations and it is possible that navigational error was to blame. This hypothesis appears to be supported by the crew of a fishing vessel who noted that Iolaire was not navigating the correct course for entering the harbour.
A memorial was erected in 1958 at Holm, outside Stornoway.A stone pillar sticks out of the water at the site of the wreck, which can be seen to starboard as the car ferry approaches the harbour entrance. A national commemorative service was held at the memorial on 1 January 2019 to mark the centenary of the disaster, attended by Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay and First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon.
Holm Village is a village in the Scottish Outer Hebrides, on the island of Lewis near Stornoway. The modern area of Holm can be split into two distinct areas - "Holm Village" and "Holm Road with Parkend". Holm is within the parish of Stornoway.
Charles, Prince of Wales is the heir apparent to the British throne as the eldest child of Queen Elizabeth II. He has been Duke of Cornwall and Duke of Rothesay since 1952, and is the oldest and longest-serving heir apparent in British history. He is also the longest-serving Prince of Wales, having held that title since 1958.
Nicola Ferguson Sturgeon is a Scottish politician serving as the fifth and current First Minister of Scotland and leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) since November 2014. She is the first woman to hold either position. Sturgeon has been a member of the Scottish Parliament since 1999, first as an additional member for the Glasgow electoral region from 1999 to 2007 and as the member for Glasgow Southside since 2007.
The Hebrides comprise a widespread and diverse archipelago off the west coast of mainland Scotland. There are two main groups: the Inner and Outer Hebrides. These islands have a long history of occupation dating back to the Mesolithic, and the culture of the residents has been affected by the successive influences of Celtic, Norse, and English-speaking peoples. This diversity is reflected in the names given to the islands, which are derived from the languages that have been spoken there in historic and perhaps prehistoric times.
Rona is a remote Scottish island in the North Atlantic. Rona is often referred to as North Rona in order to distinguish it from South Rona. It has an area of 109 hectares and a maximum elevation of 108 metres (354 ft).
Ness is the northernmost part of the Isle of Lewis, a community consisting of about 16 villages, including Lionel, Habost, Swainbost, Cross, North and South Dell, Cross Skigersta, Skigersta, Eorodale, Adabroc, Port of Ness, Knockaird, Fivepenny and Eoropie. It is the most north-westerly community in the European Union. Its most northerly point is the Butt of Lewis. The name Ness derives from the old Norse for headland and many of the other place names in the area also have a Norse origin.
Bragar is a village on the west side of the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland, 14 miles from the island's only town, Stornoway. Bragar is within the parish of Barvas, and is situated on the A858 between Carloway and Barvas.
Carloway is a crofting township and a district on the west coast of the Isle of Lewis, in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. The district has a population of around 500. Carloway township is within the parish of Uig, and is situated on the A858.
SS Penguin was a New Zealand inter-island ferry steamer that sank off Cape Terawhiti after striking a rock near the entrance to Wellington Harbour in poor weather on 12 February 1909. Penguin's sinking caused the deaths of 75 people, leaving only 30 survivors. This was New Zealand's worst maritime disaster of the 20th century.
The SS Cawarra was a paddle-steamer that sank on 12 July 1866 in Newcastle harbour, New South Wales, Australia sending sixty people to their deaths. The sinking was one of the worst maritime disasters in Australian history.
The Hebrides were settled early on in the settlement of the British Isles, perhaps as early as the Mesolithic era, around 8500-8250 BC, after the climatic conditions improved enough to sustain human settlement. There are examples of structures possibly dating from up to 3000 BC, the finest example being the standing stones at Callanish, but some archaeologists date the site as Bronze Age. Little is known of the people who settled in the Hebrides but they were likely of the same Celtic stock that had settled in the rest of Scotland. Settlements at Northton, Harris, have both Beaker & Neolithic dwelling houses, the oldest in the Western Isles, attesting to the settlement.
MV Hebrides is a ferry owned by Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited and operated by Caledonian MacBrayne from Uig to Lochmaddy and Tarbert, the main settlements of North Uist and Harris respectively.
Breacleit is the central village on Great Bernera in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Breaclete is within the parish of Uig. Although the village name comes from a geographical feature rather than a steading it is generally believed to be an ancient settlement. The oldest building in the village is the thatched water mill by the shore of Loch Risay which was restored in the 1990s. It was formerly a tiny crofting and fishing settlement of just 12 crofts surrounding the natural harbour of Loch Beag but crofting has now ceased and holiday homes have taken over. The earliest clearly mapped reference is on Murdoch MacKenzie's first Admiralty chart of 1775. In 1851 J.M. MacKenzie, the Chamberlain to the estate owner Sir James Matheson, proposed that all the tenants of the village were to be evicted and sent to North America on the emigrant ship the SS Marquis of Stafford. This plan was not fully carried through however but it still had a great effect on the village leaving it with a population of just three families. This population was later supplemented through evictions elsewhere notably the clearances of Hacklete and Barragloum villages in the south of Great Bernera.
Borve is a village on the west side of the Isle of Lewis in Scotland, 17 miles (27 km) from the island's only town, Stornoway.
Port of Ness is a village on the Isle of Lewis in the community of Ness, in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Port of Ness is within the parish of Barvas. Port of Ness is situated at the end of the A857, which runs from Stornoway.
Lewis and Harris is a Scottish island in the Outer Hebrides. It is the largest island in Scotland and the third largest in the British Isles,
The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier which is intended to be unique. Publishers purchase ISBNs from an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency.