Cruise Ship History: In a 1951 Holiday Magazine Advertisement for the United States Lines SS America – Cornelius Vanderbilt Jr. had spent nearly 1500 days at sea “crossing the pond” from New York to Europe!


Holiday Magazine 1951 Advertisement for the United States Lines SS America.

Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jr., 1898–1974, became a well-known writer, newspaper publisher, and movie producer.  By 1951, he had made 140 trans-Atlantic crossings from New York to Europe.


SS America leaving New York Harbor.  

His mega-bucks parents, General and Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt, bailed out Vanderbilt on several occasions including paying California tabloid creditors $2,257,000 to keep their lanky ex-publisher son Cornelius Jr., out of “debtor’s prison.”

For a while Cornelius was estranged from his parents for writing in what they considered the lurid, gumchewerish William Randolph Hearst Sunday Magazine.

In 1951 Cornelius joined many celebrities by being part of transportation and other advertisements.


SS America in classic post card view.


Herbert Tareyton Cigarettes Advertisement, Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jr. (right) with Mr. and Mrs. Livingston Biddle Jr.


F. Scott Fitzgerald and Cornelius Vanderbilt Jr.



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"…