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News from 1907 Lusitania's Maiden Voyage
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[QUOTE="Mark Baber, post: 46818, member: 79063"] MAB Note: This is not exactly how this article appeared in its original form. An apparently misplace line of type in the eighth paragraph, enclosed in brackets, has been moved from where an empty set of brackets appear a few lines later. The New York Times, 16 September 1907 LUSITANIA TO BREAK RECORDS SOON --- Cunard Agent, Answering the German Critics, Says She Was Not Forced This Trip --- QUARTER OF COAL UNUSED --- Crowd of Sightseers Hang About Pier 1,500 Invitations Issued for Reception on Wednesday --- Vernon H. Brown, General Manager and Agent of the Cunard Steamship Company in this country, gave out a statement yesterday in reply to cable dispatches sent from Hamburg in Saturday quoting the opinions of shipping men there that the result of the Lusitania's passage was disappointing. Mr. Brown said that the Cunard Line considered the result as eminently satisfactory, that the Lusitania had developed all the speed she was called upon to do, and that it was not intended that she should be driven to her fastest on this trip. "Capt. Watt was advised before sailing from Liverpool that, on account of tidal conditions, it was undesirable to arrive at Sandy Hook Bar until after daylight on Friday," said Mr. Brown. "On Wednesday before arrival I sent Capt. Watt a Marconi message stating I would meet the ship outside the Bar about 8 o'clock on Friday morning, and for the Captain to be prepared to come in through the new Ambrose Channel at 9 o'clock. The Lusitania arrived off Sandy Hook Lightship at 8:05, and I boarded the ship shortly after. Promptly at 9 o'clock the I ship started in through the Channel. No railroad train could have been more exact in following out its Itinerary than was this ship in following out her instructions. "It may be incidentally remarked." said Mr. Brown, " that on arrival at her dock the Lusitania had remaining in her bunkers upward of 25 per cent. of the coal put on board at Liverpool for her westbound voyage, which it must be admitted is pretty conclusive evidence that she was not driven for speed. The Lusitania proved herself a remarkably steady ship and splendid sea boat, and her passengers were most enthusiastic in her: praises. "The hasty adverse criticisms of our German friends might cause a suspicion that the wish was father to the thought." Mr. Brown referred to the fact that the Umbria, Etruria, Campania, and Lucania did not make their record passages for at least five years after they were put into service, but he ventured the opinion that in the case of the Lusitania and Mauritania [sic] "the patience of our German friends" would be not so severely tried. Mr. Brown also said that as the new Ambrose Channel was not yet completed, no ships were allowed to navigate it except between sunrise and sunset. Had the Lusitania arrived at the bar at 7 o'clock on Thursday night she would have been forced to wait until 9 o'clock on Friday morning to go through the channel. Asked if she could not have entered the harbor by the old Main Ship Channel, Mr. Brown said that there was enough water for the Lusitania, to come in that way, as she was only drawing 32 feet, but she was practically 800 feet long and the old channel was so tortuous that there might have been some difficulty, so United States Engineers decided to have her open the Ambrose Channel. Though the public was not admitted on board the Lusitania yesterday, an enormous and constantly changing crowd kept the open apace about Pier 54 thronged from early morning till dusk. The few favored persons who, armed with passes, were allowed to board the ship had first to pass a cordon of policemen, and then show their passes and explain themselves at the pier gate. Even these passes were of no avail after 4:30 o'clock, when the gate was closed for the night to all save members of the crew. Chief Oficer [sic] Melson was in charge of the ship. A hundred policemen, drafted from the precincts all over the city, were on duty at the pier, under command of Inspector Russell of the Second Inspection District [and Capt. Baldwin of the Charles Street] Station. The police lines extended across Pier 54, along the stringpiece, and down the whole length of Pier 55,  on the side toward the Lusitania, thus allowing the crowd to occupy the centre of Pier 55, where a good broadside view of the enormous vessel could be obtained. The sightseers, a typical Sunday crowd, preserved perfect order. Fruit and lemonade stands were erected along Tenth Avenue near the pier at an early hour. The Fourteenth Street crosstown line soon brought an abundance of customers to the keepers of the stands. But the most profitable business of the day seemed to be the sale of little couvenir [sic] flags of the ship. Every object in sight on the ship was subjected to scrutiny and comment and guesses as to its size. The diameter of the smokestacks was variously estimated at that of the McAdoo tunnel and at a yard and a half. The larger estimates were nearer to the truth. No visitors will be admitted on board to-day, and only a few to-morrow. The public inspection will take place on Wednesday. Nearly 1,500 invitations have been issued by the company for that day and careful preparations have been made to handle the guests. The ship's crew will be so placed as to direct the incoming guests in a regular route through the vessel. Entrance will be made by the second-cabin gangway. Thence the way will lead through the dining saloon and restaurant, the regal suites, and out on deck. Thence aft through the smoking and lounging rooms to the bridge. Visitors will leave the ship by the after gangway. The officers of the company yesterday expressed their regret that the ship is not tied up at a two-decked pier, where larger crowds could be accommodated, and where even those who could not obtain passes would have a better view. Announcement was made that some visitors would be received on Thursday and that on the ship's second trip other visiting days would be declared, to oblige those for whom the company could not provide passes this week. -30- [/QUOTE]
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Other Ships and Shipwrecks
News from 1907 Lusitania's Maiden Voyage
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