Cruise history: RMS Queen Mary Newsreel – 1936 – The song heard is Horatio Nicholls’ “Queen of the Sea”!
The RMS Queen Mary was a Cunard Line (then Cunard White Star Line) ocean liner that sailed the North Atlantic Ocean from 1936 to 1967. She was designed to be Britain’s answer to the European super-liners of the late twenties and early thirties.
The Queen Mary was constructed on the River Clyde by the John Brown & Company Shipbuilding and Engineering shipyard at Clydebank Scotland from 1930 to 1934. Construction was for a time halted due to the depression, but government subsidies ensured her completion.
When she made her maiden voyage in 1936, the Queen Mary was the second largest ship ever built (The Normandie being the largest), at 80,774 gross tons and a length of 1,019.2 feet (311 meters). In comparison, the RMS Titanic was 46,000 gross tons 883 feet (270 meters) long.
In August 1936 the Queen Mary captured the Blue Riband from the French liner Normandie with an average speed of 30.14 knots.
The Normandie reclaimed the honour in 1937, but the Queen Mary once again claimed the riband at an average speed of 30.99 knots.
The ship was named for Mary of Teck, the consort of George V of the United KingdomGeorge V (George Frederick Ernest Albert) ( 3 June 1865- 20 January 1936) was the last British monarch of the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, changing the name to the House of Windsor in 1917. As well as being King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and I. Until its naming it was known as Cunard No. 534, as the name was to be a closely guarded secret. Legend has it that Cunard intended to name the ship “Queen Victoria;” however, when company representatives asked King George V’s permission to name the ocean liner after Britain.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a state in Western Europe, usually known simply as the United Kingdom the UK Britain or less accurately as Great Britain . The UK was formed by a series of Acts of Union which united the formerly “greatest queen,” his wife, the former Princess Mary of Teck, announced that she would be delighted. And so, the legend goes, the delegation had of course no other choice but to report that No. 534 would be called the RMS Queen Mary. However, this story was denied by company officials, and is probably untrue.
There was already a Clyde Steamer of that name, so Cunard reached agreement with the owners that the steamer would become TS Queen Mary II and in 1934 the new liner was launched by Her Majesty as the RMS Queen Mary.
The Queen Mary’s running-mate, the RMS Queen Elizabeth (the largest passenger steamship ever built) was launched in 1938. The Queen Elizabeth was not fitted out as a passenger ship due to the outbreak of the Second World War, instead, both Queens were converted to troop ships, carrying as many as 15,000 troops on a single run.
After the war, the Queen Mary and the Queen Elizabeth dominated the transatlantic passenger trade. The Queen Mary was retired from service in 1967 and the Queen Elizabeth in 1968. The RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2) took over the transatlantic route in 1969. And in turn, the QE2 was replaced in 2004 by a ship named after the Queen Mary, the RMS Queen Mary 2.
Since its retirement in 1967, the Queen Mary has been permanently docked at Long Beach, California on the west coast of the United States. Accompanied for many years by Howard Hughes’ Spruce Goose, the ship now serves as a hotel, museum, and tourist attraction.