Home / Author Archives: Michael L. Grace (page 9)

Author Archives: Michael L. Grace

THE SS NORMANDIE final days…

On February 9, 1942 crowds gathered at New York City’s pier 88 to witness a spectacle. The largest ocean liner in the world was on fire. Fire fighting efforts successfully contained the fire after five and a half hours of effort, but the effort was in vain. Five hours after the flames were out the stricken vessel rolled onto its ... Read More »

Last Ferryboat to San Francisco…

Southern Pacific’s OAKLAND PIER in the 1950s… The Oakland Long Wharf, later known as the Oakland Pier or the SP Mole was a massive railroad wharf and ferry pier in Oakland, California. It was located at the foot of Seventh Street. Ferry approaches San Francisco in 1941. The recently completed San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is in the foreground. The ferry ... Read More »

Night Boat…

Eastern Steamship Lines was one of the last American flag coastal passenger services The following video: Home movie of a trip to Nova Scotia leaving from Pier 18 in NYC. (Some notes indicate it may be 1937.) We see Yarmouth and Sandy Cove, Nova Scotia, some large passenger ships, some of coastal Canada and a clam wrapped up in a ... Read More »

American Banner Lines 1957-1958…

Arnold Bernstein chartered in the summer of 1948 a passenger ship the CONTINENTAL (ex ANCON of 1902) for four round voyages from New York to Plymouth and Antwerp. In 1950-1951 Arnold Bernstein was involved with the Incres Line and their ship the EUROPA (ex MONGOLIA of 1923). She spent two seasons running between New York, Plymouth and Antwerp. After these ... Read More »

Social History: Contemporary portrait artist Juan Bastos carries on the tradition of John Singer Sargent…

Over the past 30 years, Los Angeles-based portrait artist, Juan F. Bastos, has executed several hundred portrait commissions on three continents. These oil paintings and pastel drawings hang in private homes, corporate offices, government buildings, embassies, libraries, churches, and universities. A number of Juan Bastos’ portraits remind me of [John Singer] Sargent.” Gore Vidal… Bastos’ work is also represented in ... Read More »

Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas arriving in New York aboard the French Line’s SS Champlain in 1934…

The SS Champlain was a cabin class ocean liner built in 1932 for the French Line by Chantiers et Ateliers de Saint-Nazaire, Penhoët. She was sunk by a mine off La Pallice, France, in 1940 — one of the earliest passenger ship losses of World War II. The Grand Salon… Although not as well remembered as her larger fleet-mates, the ... Read More »

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. The Pacific Mail Steamship Company ... Read More »

HOTEL ADLON… the finest hotel in Berlin…

One of the great hotels of the world. Berlin was a port of call by train in 1929 — after sailing from New York to Germany aboard the SS BREMEN. Upon arrival, tourists enjoyed a quick train ride from Hamburg to Berlin and then accommodations at the world famous Adlon Hotel in Europe’s favorite destination in the 1920s. Hotel Adlon ... Read More »

THE FORGOTTEN “TITANIC”! The RMS EMPRESS OF IRELAND…

Why has the RMS Empress of Ireland tragedy been forgotten? The sinking of the RMS Empress Of Ireland hit Canada hard and was the worst maritime disaster in Canadian history. Occurring just two years after the RMS Titanic disaster, and a year before the loss of the RMS Lusitania, it is essentially forgotten. Why? The Empress disaster does not have ... Read More »

Cruising in the 1930s…

A cruising photo and video journey in the 1930s… A wonderful video of cruising in the 1930s… Home movies… Read More »

Panama Pacific Lines… from Los Angeles to New York via the Panama Canal and Havana, Cuba…

Many American flag steamship lines – APL, Matson Lines, Moore-McCormick, Grace Line, etc. – faced the same fate when the US government withdrew their mail and operating subsidies to carry military personnel in the 1960s. The same fate happened to the American railway system in the late 1960s when the US withdrew railway post offices. The result was that the ... Read More »

RMS ATHENIA … first civilian casualty of World War Two…

The first civilian casualty of World War II. The passenger ship was the Anchor-Donaldson liner RMS ATHENIA… which was chartered to the Cunard Line. She was sunk without warning west of Scotland by the German submarine U-30. RMS ATHENIA The German U Boat U-30 had been at sea for several days, under strict orders to avoid contact or discovery. On September ... Read More »

SS ATLANTIC… 1958… $40 a day first class and $25 a day tourist class…

AMERICAN BANNER LINES – From a failed pioneering tourist liner to a celebrated university at sea. July 1958 – First Class Trans-Atlantic Crossing $312.  Tourist Class $214.  7 days at sea, 8 nights, transportation and all meals. $40 a day first class and $25 a day tourist class. Times have changed. American Banner Lines 1957-1958 Arnold Bernstein chartered in the ... Read More »

THE SS REX… ITALIAN LINE’S FAMOUS LINER…

The Italian Line’s SS Rex, launched in 1931, held the westbound Blue Ribbon between 1933 and 1935. The ship was elegant and had beautiful public rooms. It was considered one of the most beautiful liners in the world.  The video chronicles the life and death of this great liner.  The Rex operated transatlantic crossings from Italy with its running mate, ... Read More »

Love Boat star named “Ambassador” for Princess Cruises..

SANTA CLARITA, Calif., May 6, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Actress Jill Whelan, known as one of the stars of The Love Boat television show, has been named “Celebrations Ambassador” for Princess Cruises, a role that has been created to help spread the message that special occasions become extraordinary when celebrated on one of the company’s cruise ships or in a spectacular destination. ... Read More »

The Union Steamship Company…sailing north from Vancouver to British Columbia coastal towns and islands…

The Klondike gold rush galvanized the Union Steamship Company to begin operations in Alaska. The company was founded in 1889 by John Darling, the director of a New Zealand shipping company who recognized a great need for a scheduled service that would transport supplies and work crews to various northern BC sites. He also realized there was little competition in ... Read More »

History of the Cunard Line…

To write the history of the Cunard Line in a few pages is to compress the history of the steamship itself. In 1840 the majority of the world’s deep sea trade was still carried in sailing ships. Steamships were proving themselves in coastal services, but there were few who would commit untried craft to the high seas. History of the ... Read More »

RMS EMPRESS OF JAPAN…

In 1930 the Canadian Pacific’s trans-pacific service reached its zenith with the introduction of the magnificent RMS Empress of Japan. She was a very handsome ship and had magnificent interiors that now are associated with the Empress liners of Canadian Pacific. This mighty ship was delivered to Canadian Pacific in Liverpool and sailed on her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Quebec ... Read More »

Brief History of American Airlines… Great video of air travel in the 1930s… Including a piano bar…

In the late twenties and early thirties, American Airways was created through the acquisition of dozens of smaller airlines throughout the United States. Great video of American Airlines in the 1930s… Like most airlines at the time the company profited by carrying United States mail. In 1934 American Airways Company was acquired by E.L. Cord, who renamed it “American Air ... Read More »

Sailing aboard Alcoa Lines to the West Indies… in the 1940s and 1950s…

Social and Travel History: Alcoa to the Caribbean. When ALCOA operated three passenger cargo liners to the West Indies. Modern ships – elegant yet casual service.  A look to the cruising past. Because of shipping shortages in World War I, Alcoa (formerly the Aluminum Company of America) developed its own shipping line to carry bauxite from its source in what ... Read More »