Cruise History and Liner History: The SS Lurline was half way from Honolulu to San Francisco on 7 December 1941, when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.
The SS Lurline made her destination safely, cruising at maximum speed, and soon returned to Hawaii with her Matson sisters SS Mariposa and SS Monterey in a convoy laden with troops and supplies. December 7, 1941, was a turning point in the history of the United States, which had been teetering on a decision between isolationism and intervention. It can be argued that every USA military engagement since then has been affected by what happened when America learned that it was not possible to stand by and watch war among strangers without being at risk of becoming involved whether they wished to be or not.
What about all the American ships that were at sea on December 7th? The United States Lines, Grace Line and Alaska Line steamships. There were over a 100 US flag passengers ships at sea when World War 2 was declared.
Another shipboard view of the SS Lurline her normal cruise route bound for San Francisco, 5 December 1941. Two days later the USA was at war. And the famed liner SS Lurline was rushing back to the San Francisco and the safety of California.
Youtube video – Sailing day on the SS LURLINE – from Honolulu, Hawaii… memories now vanished.
The SS Lurline docking at San Diego’s Broadway pier in the 1930s.
The SS Lurline was the third Matson vessel to hold that name and the last of four fast and luxurious ocean liners that Matson built for the Hawaii and Australasia runs from the West Coast of the United States. Lurline’s sister ships were SS Malolo, SS Mariposa and SS Monterey.
SS Lurline departing Hilo, Hawaii – 1960s
SS LURLINE arrival scene – Honolulu – 1941 – Months before Pearl Harbor