SS EVA PERON and SS EVITA – DOES MADONNA KNOW?

Cruise Line History: DOES MADONNA KNOW THAT EVITA (EVA PERON) HAD TWO CRUISE SHIPS NAMED AFTER HER? The Argentine liners were called the SS EVITA and the SS EVA PERON. They were similar in design to the SS JUAN PERON. The ships ran from Argentina (South America) to Europe and the USA.

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Three views of the SS EVA PERON (later renamed the SS URUGUAY). Cia Argentian de Nav Dodero’s EVA PERON was launched in 1949. Named in honor of dictator Juan Peron’s wife, the ship was 12,627 GRT, 530 feet in length and 71 feet in width, carrying 96 first class passengers with a crew of 145. The ship was very deluxe and used by a lot of Peron’s cronies. Her maiden voyage was from London to Buenos Aires and later from Hamburg to Buenos Aires. After the fall of the Peron government in 1955 the ship was named the URUGUAY. She was broken up in 1973.

Left: Eva Peron “Mother of Argentina, the SS EVITA and SS EVA PERON”

Argentina was the only South American country to operate long distance intercontinental ocean liners, although always with ships of moderate size and speed.

While ruling Argentina, Eva Peron had dictator Juan Peron, her doting husband, name two-passenger ships after her. The Argentine liners were called the SS EVITA and the SS EVA PERON.

They were similar in design to the SS PRESIDENTE PERON. The ships ran from Argentina (South America) to Europe and the USA.


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Last minute schedule showing the EVITA sailing from New York to Bunos Aires, poster for the Argentine State Line, matches given away aboard ship and playing cards. The schedule was inserted in the regular schedule because Peron’s government had given the ship a new name: EVITA.

The Juan Peron influenced Compañia Argentina de Navegación Dodero / Empresa Lineas Maritimas Argentinas commenced Buenos Aires to London passenger voyages in 1949 with the newly built PRESIDENTE PERON and followed this in 1950 with the EVA PERON and the 17 DE OCTUBRE. Compañia Argentina de Navegación Dodero / Empresa Lineas Maritimas Argentinas commenced Buenos Aires to London passenger voyages in 1949 with the newly built PRESIDENTE PERON and followed this in 1950 with the EVA PERON and the 17 DE OCTUBRE.

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The Flota Mercante del Estado’s motorship EVITA (name adopted in 1952) was launched in 1949. She was one of two ships named after dictator Juan Peron’s wife: Eva Peron. The EVITA was 11,317 GRT, 550 feet in length and 65 feet in width. Carrying 116 passengers in first class, with a crew of 155, she operated on the line’s Buenos Aires-New York service. In 1955 she was renamed the RIO TUNUYAN when Peron’s dictatorship was defeated. She was refitted as a one-class vessel carring 372 tourist class passengers running from Buenos Aires to Hamburg. She was broken up in 1973.

The same year, passenger services between Buenos Aires, Vigo, Amsterdam and Hamburg commenced. A service between B.A., Rio de Janeiro, Las Palmas, Lisbon, Barcelona, Marseilles, Naples and Genoa with southbound calls at Montevideo soon followed. After the fall of the Peron Government, the Dodero Line ceased operations and management of the fleet passed to Flota Argentina de Navegaceon de Ultramar (FANU). In 1962 FANU and the Flota Mercante del Estado merged to form Empresa Lineas Maritimas Argentinas (ELMA) who took over the passenger services. The Genoa route was discontinued in 1969 and passenger services to London in 1967 and the ships converted to cargo carriers. The Hamburg route was ended in 1972.

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The Argentine State Line service from Argentina to New York operated between 1950 and 1962. Between 1952 and 1953 the EVITA operated to New York from Buenos Aires. With the fall of the Peron government, any reference to Juan or Eva was removed. The EVITA was changed to the RIO TUNUYAN. With the RIO DE LA PLATA and RIO JACAL the former EVITA held down the 43-day round trip from New York to Buenos Aires via Rio de Janeiro, Santos and Montevideo, returning via the same ports plus Trinidad and La Guaira (Caracas).

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The air-conditioned accommodations included large staterooms with private or semi-private bath, a main lounge, smoking room bar, library, dining room and a tiled swimming pool and lido.

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Cia Argentian de Nav Dodero’s PRESIDENTE PERON was launched in 1948. Named in honor of dictator Juan Peron, the PRESIDENTE PERON was 12,459 GRT, 530 feet in length and 71 feet in width, carrying 74 first class passengers with a crew of 145. This proved to be nearly two crewmembers to every passenger. Her maiden voyage was from London to Buenos Aires and later from Hamburg to Buenos Aires. After the fall of the Peron government in 1955 the ship was named the ARGENTINA. She was broken up in 1973.

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About Michael L. Grace

MICHAEL L. GRACE is part of the award winning team that created the internationally performed award winning musical SNOOPY, based on PEANUTS by Charles M. Schultz. SNOOPY continues to be one of the most produced shows (amateur & stock) in America/Worldwide and has had long running productions in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and in London's West End. There are over 100 individual productions every year. He has written movies for TV, including the award-winning thriller LADY KILLER, various pilots and developed screenplays for Kevin Costner and John Travolta. Besides co-writing and co-producing SNOOPY, he wrote and produced the one-man play KENNEDY. He produced P.S. YOUR CAT IS DEAD by pulitzer prize winning author James Kirkwood. He wrote the stage thriller FINAL CUT which had productions in the UK, South Africa and Australia. His one-man play, KENNEDY - THE MAN BEHIND THE MYTH, was developed for HBO and has starred Andrew Stevens, Gregory Harrison and Joseph Bottoms. He has recently been involved in European productions with CLT-UFA, Europe's leading commercial television and radio broadcaster. He wrote MOWs THE DOLL COLLECTION, THE BOTTOM LINE and LAST WITNESS for German television. While in college and graduate school he worked as a foreign correspondent for COMBAT, the famous leftwing Paris daily, and as a travel writer. He visited more than 50 countries. He struggled as an actor, then joined the enemy and entered the training program at William Morris. He became a publicist and worked for Colonel Tom Parker, Elvis Presley's manager, at Paramount and MGM. He followed with a brief stint as a story executive, working in the frantic horror genre period of the early 80s and wrote THE UNSEEN. He went onto write for episodic television and develop series pilots. He was a continuing writer on such series such as LOVE BOAT, PAPER DOLLS, and KNOTS LANDING. He developed screenplays for such major award winning directors as Nicolas Meyers, Tony Richardson and J. Lee Thompson. He has written for all the major networks and studios. He has been hired numerous times as a script doctor, doing many uncredited rewrites on TV movies and features. He is currently writing A PERSON OF INTEREST, a thriller novel, and, IT'S THE LOVE BOAT... AND HOW IT CHANGED CRUISING BY SHIP a non-fiction book dealing with how the hit TV series as a major cultural phenomenon and altered the style of cruising by ship. He was raised in Los Angeles. He attended St. Paul's, USC and the Pasadena Playhouse. He received a B.A from San Francisco State University where he majored in theatre arts and minored in creative writing. He is listed as a SFSU leading alumni. He also apprenticed at ACT - The American Conservatory Theatre. For a brief period he had intentions of becoming an Episcopal(Anglican) priest and attended seminary at Kelham Theological College in the UK. When "the calling" wasn't there, he left seminary and did graduate work at the American University of Beirut. He has guest lectured at USC, UC San Diego, McGill, Univ. of London and the Univ. of Texas on the business aspects of making a living and surviving as a writer, focusing on development hell, in the Hollywood entertainment industry. Grace is a lifetime member of the Writers Guild of America, the Dramatist Guild and former regional chairman of the Steamship Historical Society of America. He resides in Palm Springs.

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