For many years Cobh was the port of Cork, and it has always had a strong connection with Atlantic crossings. In 1838 the Sirius, the first steamship to cross the Atlantic, sailed from Cobh. The Titanic made its last stop here before its disastrous voyage in 1912, and, when the Lusitania was torpedoed off the coast of Kinsale in 1915, it was here that many of the survivors were brought and the dead buried. Cobh was also the last glimpse of Ireland for tens of thousands who emigrated during the Famine.
In 1849 Cobh was renamed Queenstown after Queen Victoria paid a visit. The name lasted until Irish independence in 1921 when, unsurprisingly, the local council reverted to the Irish original.
The world's first yacht club, the Royal Cork Yacht Club, was founded here in 1720, but currently operates from Crosshaven on the other side of Cork Harbour. The beautiful Italianate Old Yacht Club now houses an arts centre.