News from 1895: Maiden Voyage of Georgic I

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Mark Baber

Jul 4, 2000
Georgic I, White Star's last and largest cattle carrier, first arrived in New York on 27 August 1895, at the end of a rather eventful maiden voyage. This article was published the next day.

The New-York Times, 28 August 1895

Is the Largest and Fastest Freighter Afloat and Belongs to the White
Star Line
The new White Star Line freighter Georgic, which is the largest
freighter in the world, came into port yesterday. It was her first
voyage. She is a 13 ½-knot ship, only one-half a knot an hour faster
than most of the other freight ships of the same line.

The voyage over was devoid of incident, save for the rescue of a crew of
twelve men from the water-logged German bark Toni, which was fourteen
days out from Miramichi, bound for Ipswich, deal laden. The Toni got
into difficulty getting to sea, and when the crew were taken off was in
a sinking condition.

When to westward of the Banks, at midnight last Friday, Capt. Henry
Smith of the Georgic saw the sky light up away off on the port bow of
his vessel. He watched, and again a red shaft of light shot skyward.
The Toni’s crew was rocketing for assistance.

At the time a heavy sea was on, and the wind blew a gale out of the
west, but the Georgic’s Captain threw his wheel over and bore down in
the direction of the light, and in a half-hour he was abeam of the
sinking bark. Red lights sputtered on her decks, and the glare outlined
dimly the forms of the crew as they ran about her decks and frantically
waved for assistance.

The Georgic was brought about, and a lifeboat, in charge of Second
Officer Hambleton* and four seamen, was lowered. A hard pull was
necessary before the rescuers reached the bark, and the heavy sea made
it difficult to get the men off. This was finally accomplished,
however, and Capt. Suhr and eleven seamen were taken aboard the Georgic.
None of the men was injured.

The Toni has probably gone to pieces before now, as she was leaking
badly, and her seams were gradually opening from the force swelling
timber. The Toni hailed from Dantzic, and registered 468 tons. She was
an old vessel, having been built in 1867. She was partly insured.

The Georgic was nine months in being built. It was the original
intention of the company to name her the Herdic. Thais was changed
later to Fordic, but the name Georgic was finally decided upon.

She was built by the Harland & Wolff Company of Belfast, and is in every
way the finest freighter afloat.

Her length is 571 feet, her beam is 60 feet, and her depth 40 feet.
When cargoed she will draw about 30 feet of water. She has twin screws,
and triple expansion engines. Her cylinders are 24, 39½, and 65½ inches
in diameter. She measures 10,077 tons, and has a displacement of 20,000
tons. She can carry 15,000 tons dead weight, and has superior
accommodations for 1,000 head of live cattle, and can freeze at one time
3,800 quarters of beef. In all she has six decks.

When she sails on her first return voyage she will carry 12,000 tons of
general cargo, 900 cattle, and 2,000 sheep. Her indicated horsepower is

The Georgic brought over Richard Croker’s full-blooded hackney stallion,
Alan. He was quartered on the main deck aft, and showed no signs of
having just completed a hard voyage.

Henry Smith, the commander of the Georgic, has been in the White Star
Line’s service twelve years. He has commanded the Britannic and the
Cufic, both White Star Liners.


[Moderator's Note: This name is given this way in the original article, but the correct spelling is "Hambelton." Look here for more details.]

Mark Baber

Jul 4, 2000
The Times, 10 August 1895

A LARGE CARGO STEAMER---Yesterday morning the new White Star steamer
Georgic, built by Messrs. Harland and Wolff, of Belfast, arrived in the
Mersey and attracted considerable attention. She is the largest cargo
vessel afloat, although not so large as the steamships Campania and
Lucania, which are of 12, 950 tons each. The Georgic is about 560ft.
long with 60ft. beam and 40ft. depth, and she is of nearly 10,000 tons
gross, with a net register of 6,000 to 7,000 tons. She is propelled by
twin screws with triple expansion engines worked by about 200lb.
pressure. While she is fitted with refrigerating chambers on Hall's
latest patent system for the conveyance of dead meat, the Georgic can
also carry about 1,000 cattle and horses. She has double winches fore
and aft for the rapid loading and discharging of cargo. The crew's
accommodation is amidships. Mr. T. H. Ismay, of the White Star Line,
and a representative of the builders' firm were on board the Georgic on
her passage from Belfast to Liverpool.

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