Monthly Archives: November 2012

ITALIAN LINE’S TN MICHELANGELO AND THE STORM: When trans-Atlantic ocean liners were faced with “Hurricane Sandy” weather…

Italian TV news celebrates vintage newsreel footage of the new TN Michelangelo…  TN Michelangelo was an Italian ocean liner built in 1965 for Italian Line by Ansaldo Shipyards, Genoa. She was one of the last ships to be built primarily for liner service across the North Atlantic. Her sister ship was the TN Raffaello. Although grand in every way, sadly ... Read More »

Film Review: Kathryn Bigelow “Zero Dark Thirty” Exposes Bin Laden Hunt and Kill – Carries on the “West meets Arab” spy thriller tradition…

Social History – Spies and the Middle East proves rich background for films – Zero Dark Thirty carries on tradition. Early 1900 spies in Middle East- The Director of Military Intelligence (UK), Colonel Sir Francis Wingate, talking to an Arab civilian on leaving a train on the Sudan Military Railway, possibly near Atbara. Colonel Wingate spoke fluent Arabic. The Arab ... Read More »

HISTORY OF THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT LINES

HISTORY OF AMERICAN PRESIDENT LINES… Early History of Oldest Continuously Operating U.S. Steamship Company The Pacific Mail Steamship Company, predecessor of the American President Companies Ltd., was founded in 1848, two years before the transcontinental railroad was completed; its founding at this time provides American President Companies its claim as the oldest continuously operated steamship company in the United States. ... Read More »

FILM REVIEW: LINCOLN

Steven Spielberg’s LINCOLN: Abe is as Wooden as Washington’s Teeth – But Daniel Day-Lewis delivers a presidential performance, and Tommy Lee Jones steals the show The film is like watching a blade of grass grow. For all its good intentions and spurts of innovation, though, LINCOLN never really comes alive as living, breathing history. Instead, it too often plays like ... Read More »

THE SUPER CHIEF – JANET LEIGH (STAR OF HITCHCOCK’S PSYCHO) DOES FASHION ON “THE TRAIN OF THE STARS”

SOCIAL HISTORY – - JANET LEIGH, STAR OF ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S PSYCHO, IS READY TO BOARD AND VIRGINIA LEITH, STAR OF “A KISS BEFORE DYING, SHOWS US THE ALL-PULLMAN TRAIN. EVEN THE CHARACTERS FROM “MAD MEN” COULD HAVE BEEN SEEN ON THIS TRAIN IN THE EARLY 1960S. Virginia Leith, 20th Century Fox star of “A Kiss Before Dying”, did this fun ... Read More »

Book Review: ELSA MAXWELL – Gilded Gatekeeper – Pianist, gossip columnist, TV star, and above all a giver of great parties, Elsa Maxwell was famous for being herself.

Maxwell and host Garry Moore enjoy stuffed pheasant under glass, whereas the panel have been served food appropriated from each other’s refrigerators. ELSA MAXWELL – Gilded Gatekeeper – Pianist, gossip columnist, TV star, and above all a giver of great parties, Elsa Maxwell was famous for being herself. Elsa Maxwell, Tyrone Power and the Duke of Windsor at a 1948 ... Read More »

PRESIDENT TRUMAN’S “WHISTLE-STOP” CAMPAIGN AND THE END OF A TRADITION IN AMERICAN POLITICS.

Social History: Excellent home footage of President Truman on his campaign train “whistle-stop”… Rear of train and Sam Wah cafe during during Harry Truman’s Whistle Stop tour. Austin, Texas. – 1948 The “whistle-stop” tour has been a tradition in American politics since the mid-1800s. Politicians travelled the nation by train, stopping to speak to citizens from a platform at the ... Read More »

THE 20th CENTURY LIMITED – HISTORY OF THE “RED CARPET” AND A GREAT TRAIN

RED CARPET TREATMENT STARTED WITH THE 20TH CENTURY LIMITED –TRAIN OF TYCOONS AND STARS THAT RAN NIGHTLY BETWEEN NEW YORK AND CHICAGO Have you wondered where the much-overused phrase “the red carpet treatment” originated? It all started with the 20th Century Limited. It was a “Magic Carpet” high speed overnight Pullman commute between New York and Chicago as pitched in ... Read More »