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Luxury Expedition - PONANT has reached 30 years

PONANT, France's number 2 cruise company and world leader in polar expeditions celebrates 30 years of existence. It was on 1 April 1988 that the adventure began in Nantes, where 14 young Merchant Navy officers aged 23 to 29, including Jean-Emmanuel Sauvée, still active as CEO, and Philippe Videau, decided to create the company, which first took the name COMPAGNIE des ÎLES du PONANT (it became COMPAGNIE du PONANT in 2009 and simply PONANT in 2014). PONANT is the only cruise company in France flying the Tricolore. by Earl of Cruise
based on an article by Vincent Groizeleau at Mer et Marine
The first ship, built in Villeneuve-la-Garenne, was born in 1991. It is the sailboat and cruise vessel LE PONANT, a modern three-masted ship of 85.5 meters long with 32 cabins, still in service. LE PONANT´s sails became the logo of PONANT. 
A second new unit, LE LEVANT (99.6 metres, 45 cabins, 92 passengers max.), left ALSTOM LEROUX NAVAL shipyards in Saint-Malo in 1998. Then came LE DIAMANT in 2004…

HISTORY - German Greyhounds III

Armistice 1918 and Versailles 1919, Germany was deprived of its German Greyhounds.
by Earl of Cruise
WWI armistice laid up German liners in US waters
Laid up German Greyhounds, on the right: ss KRONPRICESSIN CECELIE and ss KAISER WILHELM II
Armistice WWI is at an end
source, courtesy NEW YORK TIMES
1929 Bremen is leaving for her record crossing
July 16th, 1929 was a great day for Germany, ss BREMEN was setting sails for her inauguaral crossing to New York. 4days, 17h, 42later (22nd) she snatched the Blue Riband off of rms MAURETANIA - source: Bundesarchiv
Only ten years after the Versailles Peace Treaty, with 2 billion Goldmark anual reparations for the next 58 years, a raging inflation till 1923 (introdution of the Rentenmark), the resurging Germany and NORDDEUTSCHER LLOYD was back at the top again.
Phoenix rose from its ashes.
The Allies of WWI got hold of countless German vessels during the war. German vessels did seek refugee in neutral ports. Later during the war, that all wars should end for the future, these countries  turned into enemies and seized the interned vessels. As it happend with the United States of America in 1917.
"Over night" the Allies possessed the most modern ships ...
The hostilities grew over the years, as the German industrial production, technical progress, and wealth grew. Germany too seemd under a "rain" of Nobel Prises. Within a short period Germany was all of a sudden the second largest economy in the world. The suspicion, especially in Great Britain, grew irrationally.
WWI, a war for which all the colonial powers are guilty of, ended in Versailles. It was the first catastrophy of 20th century. The Allies dictated the defeated Central Powers a treaty, that was later commented as the `big error of the century´. Only the USA, one of the 27 Allies did not ratify the Versailles Treaty. The peace treaty of 1921 between the USA and Germany and Austria then was different - repaqrations but no paragraph for the war guilt.
Besides the reparations to pay, Germany lost nearly its entire fleet, - civial vessels, all above 1,600 GT, and war ships. And when French troops did occupy the Ruhrgebiet, the Reichsregierung supported the General Streik and printed money in support. The result was an astronomic inflation. This hyper inflation is still ingrained in the genes of German people.
Purses grew into shopping bags and shopping bags shrinked into purses ...
In these years, 1922, the NORDDEUTSCHER LLOYD finalized its ss COLUMBUS. Therefore a special treaty with the Shipping Board of Great Britain had to be negotiated, to finish the stikebound ss BISMARCK as the ss MAJESTIC. In return AG SCHICHAU was building the sister vessel of the now ss HOMERIC, ex COLUMBUS of the LLOYD.
ss Columbus at sea
ss COLUMBUS, keel laid 1914, completed 1922, inaugural sailing 1924 -  source: Bundesarchiv Bremerhaven
With loans from the USA, Germany came back on track and the economy did reemerge. The German lines had to rebuild their fleets, to enable German exports. Further the newbuilding for exterior contractors with German shipbuilders grew. They have learned from the seized German ships, of which quality they are.
The economic development of Germany after the Inflation was other than Allies hoped and Germany expected. And in 1926/27 the "frozen accounts" of the LLOYD in the USA would be freed.
The success of the ss COLUMBUS was reassuring to the LLOYD. For years after WWI the international travellers missed the special "German service attitude". So the LLOYD directors and the technical department began with plans for two slitely larger and a bit faster vessels to recreate a weekly express liner service on the North Atlantic.
During the planing the vessels and and the demands on the ships rose - from 35,000 GT, to 40,000 GT to 50,000 GT. And with the tonnage grew speed. The engineers did implement in the new liners, bearing the genes of the LLOYD Greyhounds, the latest technologies and designed vessels that never have been seen before - streamlined Art Deco exteriors ...
The LLOYD contracted two different shipbuilders - BLOHM&VOSS of Hamburg for the ss EUROPA and A.G. WESER (DESCHIMAG) in Bremen for the ss BREMEN. The exterior of the "sisters" has been nearly equal to each other, but showed significant differences. The ventilation system on ss BREMEN had been different to ss EUROPA, as the promenade deck windows in the front had different arrangements, as well as the aft of their main decks. The length was slightly different, as the prows.
prior to the launch of Bremen and Europa
Prow of ss EUROPA (left) and ss BREMEN (right) - source: Bundesarchiv Bremerhaven
Bremen in her first years
ss EUROPA stern view - own collection
Bremen steaming in the North Sea
ss BREMEN in the North Sea - own collection
Two constructors and two technical approaches to reach the ultimate goal - the Blue Riband.
anouncement of Bremen and Europa
Wihle drawn, the artist could still not imagine the new form of appearance of the Ocean Express liners ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA - source: courtesy Fernweh auf Schiffplakten, Helmut Cauer
Columbus Bremen europa the ocean express
The streamlined Ocean Express liners ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA with their running mate ss COLUMBUS in the middle - source: courtesy Fernweh auf Schiffplakten, Helmut Cauer
After finalizing the financing of the vessels (1926), which had been made without any subsidising, the construction started in 1927. The price per liner would be RM 41,7mio. In the end it was RM 65mio.
The interior design concept was made by Prof. Paul Ludwig Troost, Munich. For the ss EUROPA he did by himself. For the ss BREMEN he subcontracted Prof. Fritz August Breuhaus de Groot, Prof. BrunoPaul, the author and artist Rudolf Alexander Schröder and three further architects. Despite the revolutionairy Art Deco exterior the interior design was a modernized mid 20ties "German styling", the "Neue Sachlichkeit", but not Bauhaus Design, as one would have expected. For the fans of the "old fashion" it was to could instead.
Bremen Sun Deck Restaurant
Restaurant on the Sun Deck - courtesy of Rich Turnwald
Main Salon first class on Bremen
Main Salon - own collection
Tanzsalon der Bremen und indoor pool
Music and Dance Hall of ss BREMEN (left) Indoor Pool of ss BREMEN, artist impression (right)
For the interior room concept of ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA the architects remembered the unique concept which made the former HAPAG near sisters, ss VATERLAND and ss BISMARCK, into the marvel of Art Nouveau decor they have been - divided uptakes/casings, now assisted by less Howden tubes for ventilating the boiler rooms.
While under construction the engineers remembered the innovation of the US marine engineer D.W. Taylor and his bulbous bow - `Steam and Power of Ships´. With this bulbous the tank tests made it clear, the new liners had to build with this bulbous to reach the contracted speed.
The newbuilds ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA became the first with such a bow.
Later ss REX, ss CONTE DI SAVOIA and ss NORMANDIE got such a bulbous. And in Great Britain it was discussed that this bulbous was the main reason of the vibrations of ss NORMANDIE till she got new helics, and had been strengthend in her stern section.
The bulbous on the new LLOYD Greyhounds caused some discussions within the board of LLOYD, and with the shipbuilders, as they found it odd.
Despite this discussion the building of the vessels created 4,000 to 5,000 new employments at each yard and more so in Germany with the delivery partners. Even abroad the building created new employmnents.
The two liners had been launched at August 15th 1928 in Hamburg - ss EUROPA and 16th in Bremen - ss BREMEN. The LLOYD was planning a tandem crossing with its new superliners in April 1929.
But trouble lay ahead. At first a strike of the shipbuilders workers for higher wages. This strike lasted from October 1928 till January 1929. But the weather hit too with the one of the hardest winters in Europe with temperatures of -18° to -40°. Europe was burried under snow and ice.
Only A.G. Weser was able realising a delivery date in June 1929. The LLOYD changed plans and announced the first transatlantic voyage with only the ss BREMEN. The ss EUROPE should be delivered in August 1929. But destiny hit once more. March 26th a fire on board the ss EUROPE broke while still outfitted. Midship and bridge section had been vastly damaged.
burning Europa
ss EUROPA on fire while nearly outfitted - source: Bundesarchiv
An insurance inspection declared the vessels could be restored. With further more 1,000 employees BLOHM&VOSS could realize the delivery of ss EUROPA on March 19th 1930.
Both liners had the state of the art Steam turbine technology on board installed. But for the boiler rooms another novelty - high pressure air. The rooms could only be accessed by gates. This had a number of advantages - no Howden tubes. These are neccessary for "open aired" boiler rooms. Each boiler room got its own fresh air casing, which is less weight and for the design a cleaner top deck. With a further increasing of the air pressure in the boiler rooms the boilers could produce more steam, and therefore more power for the turbines. Professor Gustav Nathanael Bauer had been responsible for implementing this technology.
The boilers delivered their steam to the four turbines. Each had a gearing of 1:10. While at normal cruising speed the turbines produced 84,000 hp to the propellers, which rotated at 180 UpM. The maximum power was 135,000 hp, while 800 ts to 1,000 ts of oil per had been used. The bunkering capacity was only 8,000 ts of oil.
ss ts Bremen enlighted by night
Another of the serveral "firsts" that ss BREMEN introduced: the vessels name in big letters, enlighted during the night - own collection
The LLOYD went into a cooporation with LUFTHANSA and DEUTSCHE REICHSPOST for a faster transport of mail to the port of destination - New York and Bremerhaven/Bremen. As the Ocean Express liners became official mail steamers, they got too a catapult installed which should shoot a mail delivering airplane in reach of land for the faster transport of special charged mail.
Ersttagsbriefe vom Katapult Flug der Bremen
source: copy from Geschichten um das Blaue Band, DP
Katapultflugzeug Start ss ts Bremen
source: copy from Geschichten um das Blaue Band, DP
NOBLESSE OBLIGE - The Hall of Mirrors, by Henry Hillar & Pete Bruno, Book 4

Almost all the first class passengers had crowded together outside the Sonnendeck Restaurant where they watched the heavy bag of Luftpost being hauled aboard the Heinkel float plane. The pilot, looking every inch a German air ace, swung himself athletically into the cockpit and started up the engine. The noise was deafening and people blocked their ears if they didn't have to hang on to their hats. The excitement mounted and then there was a mechanical sound and suddenly the plane was catapulted from the ramp and was flung over the side of the liner and into the air. It didn't simply plunge into the water as Martin had feared, but dipped for a second and then regained height and headed into the setting sun on its way to New York. It would beat them there by a full day, although it was widely believed that the Bremen would take the Blue Riband on this maiden voyage.
But during the inaugural crossing in 1929 ss BREMEN turned its bow into the wind and let the plane start for the mail delivery. This delivery prooved to be too costly and unprctic and was abandoned later in 1932.
technische Daten der Bremen
source: Georg Baumann, Aus der Zeit der großen Schnelldampfer
These new German Greyhounds again shocked the British public.
"How could they even build such vessel again?"
"Didn´t they loose the Great War?"
The ss BREMEN was far out of the usual appearance of liners and must have shocked with the exterior design. And she was a North Atlantic Greyhound. Build for speed, luxury and comfort.
ss ts Bremen
ss BREMEN at the Columbus Kaje in Bremerhaven - colourized by © Daryl LeBLanc
CUNARD and their rms MAURETANIA fought a fierce battle with ss BREMEN for the Blue Riband but had to surrender.
Linienverkehr der Norddeutscher Lloyd NDL Lloyd
map of the served lined by NORDDEUTSCHER LLOYD - source: Geschichten um das Blaue Band, DP
The NORDDEUTSCHER LLYOD did see the marketing qualities of ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA and made them into the symbol of the modern, civilised, cosmopolitan  and democratic Germany.
But clouds emrged on the horizon. The Wall Street Crash of 1929 October 24th, "Black Thursday" through shock waves over the world. First it hit the US sconomy. And with no clue what to do, the Republican US administration ordered, over night, all loans to be payed back.
As the very first Germany was hit, where during winter 1929/30 the unemployment rose by 1mio to 3mio. Further banks went bancrupt and the turn down began. The German Republic of Weimar was soon near its ending. Till 1933 the unemployment grew tremendously. The social aid system crumbled and public food kitchens emerged to feed the poor and those who lost everything.
This was the soil where demagogic politicians, with only their own interests in mind, got into power - in Germany the painter from Austria, Adolf Hitler. And far to many abroad applauded him for his doing. Still when everybody became aware what his real target was - eliminating the people of Jewish believe and war!
Other economies in Europe and over the world, deprived of the loans from America, tumbled too - the Great Depression started. For some countries, as the USA, the depression lasted till WWII.

We have actually a similar situation after the collaps of Lehman Brothers in 2006. A bank, relevant for the international monetary system, was send into peril, as a Republican with a minimal economic clue was responsible.
1930 ss ts Europa ready to sail
Passenger numbers declined rapidly on the North Atlantic while ss EUROPA had its inaugural crossing in 1930. She was beating the record of ss BREMEN and hold the trophy of the Blue Riband. The LLOYD did not want a sibling rivalry, whereas the two Ocean Express liners did not compete to each other.
ss ts Europa riding the waves
ss EUROPA riding a North Atlantic storm during her inaugural crossing - own collecton,post card bought via
In 1931 the "sod spending" squat funnels had to be rised by 8m on each liner. Till then the both liners had been "sod plagued". As long the weather was dry the crew could wash it away, but soon in fog everything was covered in oily black dust. Further the exhausts had been torn back into the ships boiler rooms.
passenger numbers 1928 to 1939
source: Arnold Kludas, Die Schnelldampfer Bremen und Europa
Despite the world wide financial turbulences the ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA had their big share of passenger transport till 1933. Even after the boycott against Nazi Germany which started in 1934 NORDDEUTSCHER LLOYD carried the most passengers across the pond. CUNARD did in numbers more, only it was because of the merger with WHITE STAR. Of the total numbers of passengers LLOYD carried each year more First Class passengers. It have been 1928 7,41%, in 1930 13,16% and in 1932 19,14%. From 1933 till 1939 these numbers declined from 15,33% to 10,52%. This was the result of the Great Depression and the boycott.
Columbus Kai Kolumbus Kaje Kolumbus Bahnhof
ss BREMEN leaving the Columbus Kaje while ss EUROPA is being berthed - own collection, colourized by © Daryl LeBlanc
Making the numbers responsible only for the loss making of ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA is looking to short. Germany got a very resticted exchange control system for securing valuta in Germany. Therefore many wealthy German couldn´t travel any longer that much abroad. The boycott was another fact and is not often stated by international authors.
Despite the then regning Nazi Party in Germany and their obscene propaganda, it was strctly forbidden for any crewmember making political comments on board, or behave in a bad way when ashore. The LLOYD officials didn´t want to upset their guests on board with that irrational "brown swamp".
anti German Olympia protests
Anti Nazi-Germany protesters - courtesy of Getty Images
Because of the Great Depression and the restricting currency policy of the Nazi regime, made it the more neccessary for the lines to pamper their guests, and was not the "meanest choice" to be on board a of German vessel - the service became better and more pampering to get them as repeatrs and their propangada within their their circles.
When sailing across the pond, the music on board was international and the orchestra played those songs which had been long forbidden in Germany. Even after the change in command of ss BREMEN, commodore Ziegenbein had to go, and Ahrens, a Nazi Party member, became his successor, nothing changed. It was this commodore who sailed ss BREMEN 1939 darked and avoiding the Allies, to Murmansk and later back to Bremerhaven.
In Dec 1934 ss EUROPA was assisting the HAPAG liner ss NEW YORK while assisting the Norwegian ss SISTO in distress. The US oil tanker MOBILOIL could be released when ss EUROPA reached the scene. Later the vessels ss AURANIA and ss GEROLSTEIN accompanied  the rescue assistance too. This assistance enlarged the reputation of ss EUROPA and especially her crew, which got a great reception in London.
In 1933 it was decided in Bremen (NDL) and Hamburg (HAPAG) to join their Transatlantic passenger trading. Therefore the LLOYD changed its pier from N° 46 to the HAPAG piers N° 84 and 86.
In 1934 the Atlantic Conference decided for equalling the classes on the ships for the Atlantic trade. As all vessels had to offer only three classes - 1st class, Tourist Class and III. Class. In 1936 it was decided to name the 1st. Class from then on Cabin Class.
ss ts Bremen Round the World cruise
Raymond Whitcomb 1937 advert for its ss Bremen world cruise in 1938 - own collection
Raymond Whitcomb, we would name them today as Concierge Travel Agency, which served the bespoken market, chartered ss BREMEN for a world cruise in 1938 from February 2nd till March 3rd. On February 11th in 1939 Raymond Whitcomb chartered again the ss BREMEN for a Trans-Panama South America cruise. This cruise got reviewed by Charles H. Baker, Jr. who published his book, `Round South America´, in 1939, when ss BREMEN was still an international sensation.
Panama Transit of ss ts Bremen
ss BREMEN then the largest passenger vessel taking the Panama Canal transit - colourized by © Daryl LeBLanc
Round South America Cruise by Raymond Withcomb on board ss ts Bremen
Frontcover of Charles H. Baker, Jr. book - source:
From NORDDEUTSCHER LLOYD’s history, written in 1929, he quoted in his book in present tense:

With her futuristic silhouette, [the BREMEN] embodies technology, momentum and glamour in equal measure and is depicted in exciting modern poster art, becoming the icon, embodiment and highlight of the brief “golden” Twenties.
But more and more state of the art liners went to sea and the competition got harder, even for the well reputated ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA. Their success started a new race for the best ship of state in every seagoing nation. And ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA would be latest 1942 now longer top liners - their success let them age.
The inauguration of ss BREMEN and later ss EUROPA created a new run for speed and luxury on the North Atlantic. And the two Ocean Express liners became the first real ships of state, for the "roaring Twenties" and "Flirty Thirties" became famous for.
But there is too another historic point - If one is doing a research today, in the age of mass tourism on the seas, asking for the ideal ocean liner look, or what should a ship to vacate on has look like; ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA / ss LIBERTÉ are named first besides rms QUEEN MARY, ss NIEUW AMSTERDAM, ss REX and ss CONTE DI SAVOIA and especially ss NORMANDIE are named.
aerial shot of ss ts Bremen
ss BREMEN approaching the port of New York in the 30ties - colourized by © Daryl LeBlanc
Liners as ss NORMANDIE, rms QUEEN MARY, ss REX and ss CONTE DI SAVOIA and ss NIEUW AMSTERDAM made the marketing for the Ocean Express liners tough. And COMPAGNIE GÉNÉRALE TRANSATLANTIQUE had a bigger and faster project than ss NORMANDIE on the drawing board, while CUNARD was building an advanced near sister to QUEEN MARY. HAPAG was planing to build sucessors of their ALBERT BALLIN class liners, of which the first ss VATERLAND was launched in 1940. The NORDDEUTSCHER LLOYD took action too and made plans for a totally new breed of liner - the ss VICTORIA and ss AMERIKA.
These plans for big and fast vessels have been made with a slight hint on the horizon of what the future may be - fast airtravel by plane for those who could afford.
August 23rd 1939 ss BREMEN left Bremerhaven Columbus Kaje with 1,770 passengers, 3/4 of US American citizens, on board for New York. The tension in Europe had grown into the extreme. Everybody expected the start of hostilities within the present day. In the middle of the Atlantic captain Ahrens got the order for turning back home. But he did decide against and sailed on a northerly course to New York. On the eve of August 28th ss BREMEN embarked in New York and disembarked the passengers, amoung them high ranked diplomates.
The departure for the next day was prepared, but without passengers. All bookings had been canceled.
ss ts BREMEN photographed during the night of 29th to 30th 1939
ss BREMEN photographed during the night of 29th to 30th 1939 - own collection
From 29th till 30ties the tax officials checked the ss BREMEN thoroughly. In the late afternoon 18:33 of August 30ties ss BREMEN disembarked and set sails for her return trip - her last. While sailing down the Hudson the board orchestra played the national anthem and the awful "Horst Wessel Lied", which was ordered to be a part of the national anthem, and the crew sang with its right arms raized, helpless and defiant ...
ss BREMEN photographed during the 30th 1939
Hoisting the flag of Nazi Germany, raising the arms for the Nazi "Greeting", singing the national anthem with the "added" Horst-Wessel-Lied ... helpless and defiant - courtesy of Getty Images
On the stern of ss NORMANDIE, moored next to ss BREMEN, the crew gathered, dipped the French flag in greeting and wished good bye ...
It was the last time, a German express liner left the port of New York.
Shadow Voyage of ss ts Bremen by Peter A. Huchthausen
copy from my book of Peter A. Huchthausen
Captain Ahrens gave order for painting the ss BREMEN in grey and set course for Murmansk in Russia. He navigated more or less "blind", as there have not been propper maps on board. Three month later the ss BREMEN set course home to Bremerhaven along the coast of Norway, where the vessel got airshelter by the German airforce, after the occupation of Norway.
Laid up in Bremerhaven, with the airshelter of the homeland airforce, army officers made plans for converting the ss BREMEN and ss EUROPA into troop, tank transports and auxialliary landing vessels. Despite other opinions the conversions were made. The conversions should enable the liners taking tanks on their promenade decks and aussault troops for the Operation Seelöwe - the planed occupation of Great Britain.
ss ts Bremen in camouflage for the Operation Sea Lion - Seelöwe
ss BREMEN in war camouflage. Clearly visiable the ramps for the tank transportation - own collection
Only the sea trials prooved the generals wrong, as the vessels got massive stability problems.
March 16th 1941 ss BREMEN burnt massively. The fire destroyed the vessel totally. There have been more than one reasons for fast burning. During the construction steel had been removed to reduce weight, and further steel walls had been ripped off while prepared to became an assault vessel. The ventilation did run on minimal power and the fire protection was shut off.
A 17 year old youth, who had been treated badly by his comrades and got a slap in his face from his superior conveicted to have set the fire.
Later he denied his statement, but was sentenced to death in a "trial" ...
Bremerhaven ss ts Bremen burning
ss BREMEN burning on March 16th 1941 and capsising at her berth - capsised wreck left - own collection
The once proud Ocean Express was dismantled and his double plated keel section was sunk in the estrurary of the Weser, where it can be seen during a very low tide.
The near sister of ss BREMEN which burned while outfitted in 1930, was much luckier. She was seized by the US troops when occupying Northern Germany. The vessel was used as USS EUROPA and did troop service for the US Army. She handed over to France as a reparation amoung the Allies for the loss of the ss NORMANDIE was burned as well - by sheer carelessness, incompetence and arrogance ...
In French hands the now named ss LIBERTÉ drifted in a fierce storm onto the wreck of the burned ss PARIS and sank. She was refloated, massively rebuild and send back to the sea as the new flagship of COMPAGNIE GÉNÉRALE TRANSATLANTIQUE.
Outdated and overworn, ss LIBERTÉ was sold to the breakers in 1962, when Cie Gén TRANSATLANTIQUE inaugurated its new flagship - the ss FRANCE.
The ss BREMEN is still well known in Germany and amoung shiplovers. And for the German market DEUTSCHE POST inaugurated a stamp in 2004, 75 years after her first sailing and winning the Blue Riband. Along with the stamp they published a too a book - Geschichten um das Blaue Band, Rekorde, Legenden, Katastrophen. The book contains faximiles of catatpult flown letters, original stamps and has a vast number of photographs. As well it is brilliantly researched.
ss ts Bremen first day cover - ersttagsbrief 08. August 2004
own collection
Further the German broadcasting network RADIO BREMEN has made in 2004 a brilliant TV feature where they gave space to passengers of ss BREMEN and recalled the history of the famous vessel.
Bremen steuert die Kolumbus Kaje an
 ss BREMEN approaching the Columbus Kaje after 1931, with her by 8m raised funnels - own collection,  
colourized by © Daryl LeBlanc

History - ts / ss BREMEN and ts / ss EUROPA


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NORMANDIEwas technically decades ahead of time. The vessel got implemented technologies that would have been copied by others, who then claimed to be the first to have. Alternative facts are not a modern days invention of a certain chrétien and his backward oriented entourage ... NORMANDIE´s interior was the peak of ART DECO in France, and was, still is, the peak of chic. Never again any liner, or passenger vessel, except NIEUW AMSTERDAM had been designed exterior and interior that strict in the "guide lines" of the ART DECO (Link in German) movement - as ART DECO is "only" a movement and not a school like BAUHAUS. Therefore the style was in a permanent "move" and development. NORMANDIE, the perfect ocean liner, Le Vaisseau de Lumière, Le Deesse de la Mer - courtsey coloured by Daryl LeBlanc
While rese…


The PACIFIC MAIL STEAMSHIP COMANY was existing for "just" one hundred years and was in her heydays a backbone for the development of the US West.
The PACIFIC MAIL STEAMSHIP COMPANY was founded April 18, 1848, as a joint stock company under the laws of the State of New York by a group of New York City merchants, William H. Aspinwall, Edwin Bartlett, Henry Chauncey, Mr. Alsop, G.G. Howland and S.S. Howland. These merchants had acquired the right to transport mail under contract from the United States Government from the Isthmusof Panama to California awarded in 1847 to one Arnold Harris.
The company was sold 1938 last to AMERICAN PRESIDENT LINES, existing only on the paper, was closed down in 1949.
by Earl of Cruise CALIFORNIA, PACIFIC MAIL's first ship - Source: Wikipedia
CALIFORNIAwas the first steamer built by the PACIFIC MAIL STEAMSHIP COMPANY and she was launched May 19, 1848. She sailed from New York for Panama, via Cape Horn, on October 6, 1848. The CALIFORNIA arrived a…

Ocean Liners in Movies or Films at Sea (updated Nov 2017)

For liners and the shipping companies movies and films had been a top marketing toolMovies or Films and liners at sea, had been intriguing me since I have read about in my youth in LUXUSLINER - BILDER EINER GROSSEN ZEIT by Lee Server (THE GOLDEN AGE OF OCEAN LINERS). But earlier, mot only since my first crossing, I was keen watching movies with liners in it, and disapointed, which was an understatement, when I realized the films have been made in a set ashore in some movie "factory". That was after my first crossing.
by Earl of Cruise
an essay in progress
Ocean liners, especially those of the luxury category, had been the location of dramas, love stories, thrillers, suspense and catastrophies sinde film was born, or nearly.
In this list, the most descriptions are taken from Wikipedia, as I guess no one can expect having seen all these films ... otherwise I would have squared eyes. The list I tried to do as chronological as possible. But avoiding the cruise ship films, the catast…

Starting rms AQUITANIA from cold

rms AQUITANIA, 1914, Cold Starting
rms Aquitania 1914 - courtesy, collection of Stephen Carey Cunard Line Ltd., Builders: John Brown, Clydebank by Stephen Carey, engineer, editing by Earl of Cruise 1 Overview of machinery spaces
1.1 Boiler rooms Aquitania is (or was) a quadruple screw Cunard liner fitted with 21 double-ended boilers, operating at 195lb/in2.These boilers are arranged six each in each of boiler rooms 1,2&3 (note that Cunard numbers forward to aft compared to White Star which numbers aft to forward), and 3 in No4 Boiler Room (the aftermost one). The double-ended boilers are fired for transatlantic passages up to full speed and used for main propulsion, power generation, auxiliaries and many other services that require steam. Each double-ended boiler has 4 furnaces served with coal from wing bunkers. Combustion air for the boilers is provided by forced draught fans, as is usual for Cunard vessels. 1.2 Coal bunkers Coal bunkers are provided either side of the stokehold furnaces …