Tag Archives: Messageries Maritimes

Ships and Liners of Messageries Maritimes

MS Caledonien in Sydney Harbor,  from the collection of Richard Francis (taken February 1970).

Messageries Maritimes was a French merchant shipping company. It was originally created in 1851 as Messageries Nationales, later called Messageries impériales, and from 1871, Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes, casually known as “MesMar” or by its initials “MM”. Its rectangular house flag, with the letters MM on a white background and red corners, was famous in shipping circles, especially on the ... Read More »

Les Paquebots: Tahitien and Caledonien – Sailing from France, via the Panama Canal, to Cambodia and Vietnam.

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The Messageries Maritimes ships, the Calédonien and the Tahitian (later reborn as the cruise ship Atalante), sailed for two decades (1952 to 1972) on regular round trips lasting almost four months between Marseilles and Sydney. The two ships were beautifully designed passenger-cargo liners. These handsome ships carried cargo, passengers, and military personnel to French outposts in the Caribbean and the ... Read More »

Liner History: Messageries Maritimes (Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes)

Ocean Liner History: Messageries Maritimes (Compagnie des Messageries Maritimes) In 1835 the French Government created a state owned steamship service between Marseilles and the Levant. This continued until 1851 when it was transferred to the management of Messageries Nationales (the state operated road communication concern). The shipping side of the business was split from the road activities in 1852 under ... Read More »

Le Cirque’s famous owner Sirio Maccioni started as a waiter “crossing the pond” aboard the Home Lines SS ATLANTIC.

Home Lines SS ATLANTIC… Le Cirque’s famous owner Sirio Maccioni started as a waiter “crossing the pond” aboard the Home Lines SS ATLANTIC. After achieving success, he sailed trans-Atlantic years later as a first class passenger aboard the Italian Line’s SS GIULIO CESARE. In June 2004 Maccioni published his biography, Sirio: The Story of My Life and Le Cirque with ... Read More »

Messageries Maritimes – Passenger liner arriving from Vietnam.

The French passenger liner SS La Marseillaise is seen arriving in Marseillaise from Vietnam during the 1950s.  She was the largest and most luxurious ship operated by  by the steamship company Messageries Maritimes. La Marseillaise operated between France and the Far East. The elegant vessel was launched in 1944 in the name of Marshal Petain (who was a French general ... Read More »

S.S. LA MARSEILLAISE – Messageries Maritimes’ “Orient & Indo China” route… from Saigon to the depths of Grenada…

Messageries Maritimes’ flag-ship ended up like mini-Titanic… read on… MM ship leaving Saigon Dating from 1862, Messageries Maritimes’ “Orient & Indo China” route was its premier route, serving as it did the Jewel in France’s Crown in the East: Indo-China. Saigon during the golden age before the endless and useless war… Saigon was always MM’s second homeport centred on la ... Read More »