Panama Pacific Line's Virginia 1930's cruise


Feb 14, 2011
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Did the SS Virginia ever offer a 'Trip Around The Cape' tour?

I've found my Great Great Aunt on a 1936 passenger manifest for the SS Virginia, and she's listed as leaving the Pacific Coast, and arriving in New York.

The only information I've been able to find is that the Virginia did a Panama Canal cruise in the 1930s, but we have information that she traveled on a cruise that went around 'The Cape' at some point in her life. I'm assuming she meant The Cape Of Good Hope, as it was often referred to as simply 'The Cape', and I can't imagine a responsible passenger shipping line putting people around Cape Horn with all its treachery.

I have my doubts as to whether she would ever have taken another cruise on board a ship for a vacation, since I don't think she could have afforded it. It probably took her until she was 61 just to be able to afford to take this vacation on the Virginia, since she worked as a domestic. Granted, she was Otto Kahn's head housekeeper at his 5th Avenue Manhattan residence until his death in 1934, but I still don't think she would have been very well off.

[Moderator's Note: This thread has been moved from the "American Line" topic, where it was originally placed, and renamed. MAB]
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
Cathy, I tried to google up something for you but about the best I could do was find a mention of this ship on a collectables website. Some of the others gave me links to a Puget Sound based passenger ship which couldn't possibly be the one you're interested in.

It's not entirely inconceivable that a tour could have used the Cape of Good Hope, but I would think that this sort of thing would only be attempted in the local summertime when the weather is nowhere near as bad. By any reckoning, the Cape is not something to be attempted lightly!
 
Feb 14, 2011
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Thanks guys!

I spoke to my mother about this, since she's the one who's insisted for years that it was a cruise around the Cape, but now she admits that it was so long ago she heard about it that maybe it was a cruise through the Panama Canal.

I sure wish that people would just admit when they tell a story that they're a little unclear about some of the details. It sure would make searching things out a lot easier.

Meanwhile, I've found this on Youtube - I wonder if this is the particular cruise my aunt was on? It's the same ship:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELZ_6gtmgq8

And now my cousin has discovered her on a manifest for a trip in 1939 to Venezuela, and back to New York on board the MS Statendam III.

She was quite the little globetrotter for a housekeeper. She even traveled Second Class on board the SS Berengaria when she immigrated to the US from England in 1927.

Her sister, my Great Grandmother, made a far more frugal trip immigrating to Canada in Steerage on board the SS Tunisian in 1904.
 
Feb 14, 2011
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Thanks!

I've been researching the Berengaria this morning. What an impressive ship! I love the figurehead it had when it was the Imperator. Too bad I read somewhere that the wings fell off it on its third voyage.
207813.jpg
 
Feb 14, 2011
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Found the ship another of my Great Great Aunts came over on today. She was the oldest sister of the aunt and grandmother mentioned above. This one immigrated to the US from Scotland, and traveled on the SS Lord Gough in July of 1892.

http://www.norwayheritage.com/p_ship.asp?sh=logou

I'm not sure I'd want to be traveling across the Atlantic in that little thing.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>I'm not sure I'd want to be traveling across the Atlantic in that little thing.<<

Try it on a ship as small as either the Mayflower or the Golden Hind. I've seen a replica of the latter. She's smaller then a yard tug but the crew of the original sailed her around the world!
 
Feb 14, 2011
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Yeah, my mother pointed out that her Great Grandparents from Norway built their own boat out of wood, and sailed to North America on it when they immigrated here. I doubt if that was very big.

But if I'm going to be out in the open ocean, I want to be in something at least as big as the MS Noordam I took a cruise on back in the 80s.
 
Nov 26, 2016
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I have a necklace from the SS Virginia from my grandmother. I am very interested in any information that I can get about the ship,
 

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