The iron steam trawler Columba launched from the Leith yard of Hawthorns and Co Ltd. on 15th June 1893 on order from Thomas Devlin of Granton. He measured 99.0′ x 20.1′ x 10.1′ and weighed 126 gross tons, 22 net tons. She was powered by a triple expansion steam engine by Hawthorns delivering 48 net horsepower. Registered in Granton her fishing number was GN43.
Her career until the outbreak of the First World War was relatively uneventful with a collision with the Leith trawler Kingfisher on 24th November , 1911 just off Leith harbour as the only notable event. A small refit in 1914 changed her tonnage to 138 gross tons, 50 net tons but otherwise she remained unaltered.
Her successful fishing career was interrupted by the outbreak of Word War One and in In May 1916 she was requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to a boom defence vessel operating in the Firth of Forth. She successfully carried out these duties until the last year of the war but in March 1918 she was to end her career at the bottom of the Forth. On the 10th of that month she was under tow from Dundee for Rosyth to take up duties as a gate vessel but, as they passed the Isle of May at 14:12, a huge explosion erupted below the Columba as she ran into a mine, part of an array of mines laid earlier by German submarine UC-40 under the command of Hermann Menzel. Five crewmen were lost, presumably killed by the explosion of the mine, as the ship sank almost immediately.
The wreck of the Columba lies in position 56° 09.520’N, 002° 33.599’W (WGS84) The wreck is in tact, sitting upright in 48 metres oriented 060/240 degrees.