Built in 1903 and launched at the River Clyde on June 16, 1906, RMS Lusitania was a fast and luxurious ocean liner that made regular transatlantic passenger trips. At 785 feet in length and 31,550 gross tons, she took the title of largest liner afloat. Her maiden voyage took place September 7, 1907, and in October 1907 she recaptured the coveted 'Blue Riband' from the German liner Deutschland. On May 1, 1915 Lusitania left New York for the final time. On May 7 with the coast of Ireland in site, German U-boat U-20 torpedoed Lusitania. She sank in 18 minutes taking 1,195 lives - 123 of them American. Although America did not immediately declare war on Germany, her sinking contributed to the mood that turned the tide of American public opinion against Germany and led the United States to join the Allied cause in World War I.