Cruise Line History – THE ANCHOR LINE to India and Pakistan


In 1838 two brothers, Nicol & Robert Handyside set up business in Glasgow as ship brokers and merchants trading with Russia and the Baltic ports. Towards the end of 1852 Thomas Henderson, an experienced ship master, joined the firm. It was not until 1856 that the title of Anchor Line was adopted and the service between Glasgow and New York inaugurated. In 1855 three clipper ships were delivered and on the 3rd. April of that year the TEMPEST, with John Henderson (younger brother of Thomas) in command sailed for Bombay. She was the first ship of the fleet to be converted to a steamship in 1856. Her initial performance was not spectacular as it took her 28 days to cross the Atlantic. With the Glasgow-New York service well established the company looked around for new routes. The Calcutta service was opened by the BELGRAVIA from Glasgow in 1882. It was not until 1948 that the company’s eastern passenger service became properly organized. In April of that year the CALEDONIA (V) sailed on her maiden voyage to Bombay. The CALEDONIA and CIRCASSIA were not far behind. These three motor ships carried 300 First Class passengers and were able to maintain a regular monthly service.

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About Michael L. Grace

During the mid-80s, Michael Grace worked as a writer on the TV Hit Series THE LOVE BOAT. He wrote many of the two hour special featuring great stars of the past, including Lana Turner, Claire Trevor, Anne Baxter, Ethel Merman, Alexis Smith, etc. The public’s access to these stars, in familiar dramas and comedies, made them want to go on a cruise. They could see the stars in an ordinary world as “regular” people. The phenomenally successful series was responsible for creating the cruise industry as we know it today. By the time he was writing for Love Boat, the great steamship companies and their liners were flying hand me down foreign flags, painted like old whores, scrapped or doing three day cruises to the Bahamas. He had sailed on over thirty ships and liners with his parents, aunt and grandmother in late 50s to early 70s. The very successful CRUISING THE PAST website has been an outgrowth of Michael’s strong interest in cruise and social history. Drawing on his own knowledge and a vast maritime and social history collection, he is able to produce a very successful website. Michael is part of the award winning team that created the internationally performed award winning musical SNOOPY, based on PEANUTS by Charles M. Schultz. He has written for television and films. Read more by going to "About" (on the above dashboard) and clicking "Editor"…

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