Most luxurious liners 18401880


Feb 14, 2011
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Much has been written about liners from White star's 'Big Four' and beyond. But I am interested in liners of the mid to late 19th century- If I'm not mistaken, Brunell's "Great Britian" is the only 19th century liner still in existence- Brunel's Great Eastern may have been a 5 funneled monstrosity, but her importance in the history of the design of liners cannot be overstated.
In terms of luxury- what are some of the most underrated liners from the mid 19th century? In the 1850s, the Collins Line and the Cunard Line seemed to be the 2 main shipping lines-
Even though the Collins line went bust not long after the loss of the Pacific- did the Americans continue to produce liners of both luxury and notice? What were the most significant- and luxurious ocean liners from the years 1840-1880?


regards


tarn Stephanos

[Moderator's Note: This thread has been renamed and moved to a subtopic containing similar threads. MAB]
 
Dec 29, 2006
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Witney
The Inman Line, founded in 1850, was very well-regarded and was, at one time, seen as a rival to Cunard. Their ships were named after famous cities, and by the 1890s they were notable insofar as vessels such as The City of Rome (1881) still had bow sprits. The Guion Line (originally The Black Star Line) was also a serious competitor for Cunard - Guion vessels were named as US states, such as Montana and Dakota.
 
Feb 14, 2011
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Stanley, was the Inman Line an American or British company?
I wondered if the Collins line was the only American company to offer serious competition to the British trans Atlantic liners..........

Its curious- The Yanks dominated when it came to the trade clipper ships- yet when it came to the trans atlantic liner, we always came in last...I wonder why?
 
Dec 29, 2006
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Tarn,

Many of these Atlantic steamship companies were, in many ways "Anglo-American" undertakings, with shareholders in both countries (irrespective of flags). The Inman line was a Liverpool-based company, but it was purchased by the Red Star Line in the late 1880s and thereby became an American company.

The "City of" prefixes were dropped from the names of the ships around the time of the sale. One of the former Inman ships, I think it was the Paris, was involved in an incident on the notorious Manacles Reef near Falmouth - I think there was some controversy when it was felt that the American captain had not co-operated over the enquiry (I would need to look that one up).

The grounding of the Paris is commemorated by a pub in the area called the Paris Inn.
 
Dec 29, 2006
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The City of Paris and the City of New York were transferred to the American flag in 1893. The remaining vessels remained under the control of "The Inman & International Line", whereas the Paris and New York were, thereafter, owned by "The American Line". Both of these ships had distinctive clipper bows and bowsprits.

The Inman Liners were the first to use Queenstown as a regular port-of-call, while the company was also one of the first to use electric lighting. Like the Titanic, The City of Rome hit an iceberg, but was saved by her bowsprit and clipper bow! Another Inman Line vessel, The City of Berlin, was involved in a major fire in San Francisco in 1906 - she was then known as the Meade.
 
Feb 14, 2011
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Thanks for the information Stanley!

How about mid 19th Century liners on the pacific- Did the British dominate the Pacific as well as the atlantic? To their credit, the Japanese had a number of attractive mid to late 19th century liners...
 
Dec 29, 2006
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Canadian Pacific steamers had a significant presence in both Atlantic and Pacific waters, the idea being that there would be an "All Red Route" from the UK to the Orient via the CPR and thence across the Pacific by ocean liner. The P&O Line were probably involved in the Pacific trade to some extent, and would certainly have been important on the routes from the UK to Australia and New Zealand.
 

Mark Baber

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Dec 29, 2000
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Canadian Pacific steamers had a significant presence in both Atlantic and Pacific waters

But not quite as early as the time that Tarn is asking about, Stanley. The first CP transpacific steamer, Empress of India I didn't come along until 1891 and its Atlantic service didn't begin until 1903, when CP acquired Elder Dempster's Canadian routes and related ships.
 

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