31 July 2010

A Real Boy Scout

On this day in 1939 Boy Scout chief, Dr. James E. West, arrived in England aboard the RMS Queen Mary. He was on his way to the 10th International Scout Conference in Edinburgh, Scotland. He is shown here being greeted by boy scouts after leaving the ship.

30 July 2010

Among The Hoi Polloi

On this day in 1936, Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt, mother of twelve year old heiress Gloria Laura Vanderbilt, sailed for Europe aboard the RMS Queen Mary with her sister, Lady Furness. They are pictured above the previous year as they arrived home after a month in the country.

Also on board: The Earl and Countess of Lincoln, Sir Malcolm and Lady Perks; Mrs. Lewis Cass Ledyard Jr., Kaye Don, racing automobilist; Jesse L. Lasky, Jesse L. Lasky Jr.; Mr. and Mrs. Adam L. Gimbel; Mrs. Leopold Stokowski and Percy H. Johnston, chairman of the Chemical Bank and Trust Company.

New York Times

23 July 2010

A Queen Mary Escapade

From an article entitled "Woman-of-Many-Names Boasts Of Stowing Away on Queen Mary" in The Montreal Gazette on this day in 1942:
The woman-of-many-names has 'fessed up to being a woman-of-many-an adventure!

The 23-year-old girl, who is allegedly involved in nearly 30 local forgery and theft offences and whose real identity has been baffling the police, told The Gazette yesterday her real name is Loretta Eccleston, of Hamilton, Ont.

She claims to be the same girl who crashed the newspapers a few years ago in a far more dramatic way. She is the girl who stowed away on the Queen Mary and associated with celebrities on an ocean crossing.

"Some people have a funny idea about stowaways. They think they are put in the brig but I wasn't locked up 'til a half an hour before we docked at Southampton. A prominent passenger bonded me while I was in England for a month while immigration authorities arranged my passage back to Canada," is what she had to say about her Queen Mary escapade.

The girl who attended a convent in Hamilton admitted that perhaps it was...[a] sense of adventure that instigated her Queen Mary jaunt which moved her to take up petty criminal pursuits.

Her Queen Mary story came out when remarks were made about the haunting familiarity of her
face. She replied that a Gazette photographer had taken her picture once. Then she revealed tha tshe had stowed away on the ship and at that time had received a great deal of publicity.

Her stowaway adventure was the result of a bon voyage party she said. That trip had not been premeditated at all. When the ship started away apparently she had not realized it. Although she admitted that she could have returned to harbor on the pilot boat, by that time she was convinced that a trip across the Atlantic would be a lark. She returned on a Cunard White Star line ship and was detained at Halifax while authorities checked up on her identity.

22 July 2010

Mary To The Rescue

From The Pittsburgh Press on this day in 1938:


By The United Press

NEW YORK, July 22 - Aboard the Queen Mary as she steamed toward England were 1400 hypodermic needles which are being rushed 14,000 miles by sea and air to aid Red Cross officials fighting cholera and typhus epidemics among Chinese refugees.

The needles were supplied by the American Bureau for Medical Aid to China in response to urgent pleas from Red Cross officials in the Far East. On their arrival in England Tuesday the needles will be transferred to an airplane which will carry them to Bangkok, Siam, from where they will be distributed among health officials fighting disease among China's 60,000,000 civilian refugees.

21 July 2010

Return Of A Hero

From an article in the Gettysburg Times on this day in 1945:

Pfc Charles Wilkinson, Jr., holder of the Purple Heart, the European Theater ribbon with three battle stars, presidential unit citation and the combat infantryman's badge, is spending a 30-day furlough from Indiantown Gap with his parents...Wilkinson served with Co. I, 28th Infantry, 8th Division through France, Belgium and Germany until he was hospitalized for frost-bite and trench feet...He participated in the battles of the Hurtgen Forest...Ardennes bulge and the Roer River...Upon the expiration of his furlough August 16 he has orders to return to Indiantown Gap Military Reservation where he was sent after landing at New York July 11 aboard the giant liner Queen Mary.

20 July 2010

Rotarians On Board

From the Lodi News-Sentinel in 1936:

Rotary on Ship

NEW YORK, July 20 (UP) - The first permanent sea-going Rotary club has been established aboard the new superliner Queen Mary. Meetings are held on every voyage eastbound and westbound and have so far been well attended by members from Rotary clubs in the Untied Staes as well as from Great Britain.


19 July 2010

Job No. 534 Propelled

From British Pathe on this day in 1934 (click on picture for video):


18 July 2010

Not So Long Distance

From "Valley Personals" in The Modesto Bee on this day in 1945:

Mr. and Mrs. Harry Hall received a telephone call Thursday from their son, Staff Sergeant Donald Hall, who had arrived in New Jersey Wednesday. He arrived in the states [sic] on the Queen Mary after spending more than 20 months in England. He is with the 8th Air Force.

17 July 2010

Super Model

From The Lewiston Daily Sun on this day in 1936:

The Portland Tourist Company had displayed in its window last week a tiny model of Britain's giant liner, "Queen Mary". This 27-inch wooden model has been causing an unusual amount of interest and Harry Abrahamson, manager of the agency, plans to exhibit the ship for several weeks. The largest model of the huge liner, now in New York, measures 74 inches and is reported to have cost more than $20,000 to build. Harry Abrahamson...hopes to have this larger model on display in Portland within the following year.

16 July 2010


From an article in the Reading Eagle on this day in 1937:

Southampton, Eng., July 16 (AP) - The luxury liner Queen Mary rested mythically today on the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean south of Ireland, "sunk" by an attacking cruiser in Britain's vast war games.

The steamship, bound for New York, was theoretically shelled by the cruiser Southampton of an attacking "blue" battle fleet before the "red" fleet and air squadrons protecting the English Channel located the "invader."

The "attack" was staged in the closing hours of a fortnight of naval "combat" over an area stretching from the Azores to the English Channel, in connection with land maneuvers that for the last two days kept all southern England west of a line from London to Bristol in a "state of war."

15 July 2010

From Sea To Sky

From The Sydney Morning Herald on this day in 1936:


Inaugurated at Cherbourg.

(British Official Wireless.)

When the Cunard-White Star liner Queen Mary docked at Cherbourg yesterday morning, a new air service for travellers to Central Europe was inaugurated. Several passengers left at once in an air liner with Budapest as its final destination.

The Queen Mary's time from New York was 4 days 14 hours 15 minutes.

When the Queen Mary reached Southampton, it was stated that she would enter the King George V. graving dock on Wednesday. Her engines are to be tuned up, and she will not sail again until July 22.

14 July 2010

Cantor On Board

From British Pathe on this day in 1939 (click on picture for video).


13 July 2010


Reported by the Chicago Daily Tribune on this day in 1950:


Dr. Henry Bazett, professor of the University of Pennsylvania physiological medical school, died of a heart attack aboard the liner Queen Mary, on the way to New York, said a radio message today.

According to a 1921 edition of The Pennsylvania Gazette, Dr. Bazett came to his post that year at the age of 35 from Oxford University in England where he was "one of the foremost authorities on physiology...[and] one of the leading younger scientific men of the world."

He was en route to the International Physiological Congress in Copenhagen when he passed away.

Sources & Photo:
The Pennsylvania Gazette: Volume 19, Issue 13 (January 7, 1921).

12 July 2010

Two Swell Guys on Board

On this day in 1951 Danny Kaye and Metropolitan Opera star Ezio Pinza arrived at Pier 90 in New York aboard the R.M.S. Queen Mary.

11 July 2010

War Hardened Troops

Excerpted from The Lewiston Daily Sun in 1945:


Queen Mary, West Point Carry Most of Them

NEW YORK, July 11 -AP-More than 34,000 war-hardened troops--the largest number to return here in a single day--arrived today aboard eight transports.

Leading the flotilla were the former luxury liner Queen Mary with 14,747 passengers, and the West Point, the Navy's largest transport which carried 7,607 soldiers.

Navy planes, a blimp and a helicopter met the ships in the lower bay. A New York City fireboat sent up sprays of water in salute. Whistles and horns sounded a continuous din.

Aboard the West Point, in addition to the troops, were 33 Japanese diplomats taken into custody in Europe. In the group was Hiroshi Oshima, Japanese Ambassador to Germany. They will be placed in quarantine and then interned.

Ranging over the starboard side of the vessel were banners of the 87th Division, carrying the legend, "On To Tokyo," and of the 374th Infantry, and the Fifth Corps.

The Queen Mary carried 8,452 American troops, 88 American nurses, 11 Navy personnel, 10 American Red Cross officials, two American civilians and 33 British shipping officials in additon to 6,068 soldiers of the famed Canadian First Army, 49 Canadian nurses and 16 women members of the Canadian Army.

10 July 2010

A Best Loved Queen

From the column, "In New York" in The Milwaukee Journal on this day in 1935:

And there's the anecdote about the naming of a ship, specifically the Queen Mary, which will be next in size to the French Normandie.

All the vessels of the Cunard Line have borne names ending in "ia," such as the Aquitania, Mauritania [sic] and Berengaria. So this ship was to have been called the Queen Victoria, conforming to the company's custom. But plans were changed, the story goes, when a Cunard official was received by King George. "It is our wish," he said, "to name this great ship after one of our nation's best loved queens."

"The queen will be delighted, I am sure," said George.

There was nothing for the shipping man to do, since it was apparent that the king had innocently leaped to the conclusion that the vessel was to be named for his own consort. So Queen Mary it is.

09 July 2010


From an article entitled "Holder of Croix de Guerre Gets Army Discharge" in the Gettysburg Times on this day in 1945:

Bernard E. Small, West High street, New Oxford, formerly a technician fifth grade with the 601st Tank Destroyer Battalion and holder of the Croix de Guerre from the French First army for remaining at his post as a machine gunner during a German tank and infantry attack near Coimar...is a veteran of 42 months of service in the army of which 34 1/2 were served overseas.

Attached with his Tank Destroyer Battalion to the famed American First Division, Coropral Small was with the first troops to sail to the European Theatre of Operations aboard the equally famed Queen Mary. "They packed 22,000 aboard that trip," he said.

08 July 2010

40,000 Meals

From The Montreal Gazette on this day in 1935:

Plenty of Food

As many as 40,000 meals will be served on transatlantic voyages of the Queen Mary, new Cunard White Star superliner being completed at Clydebank. Most of these meals will be served in the main dining saloon, which extends the entire width of the ship, and has a seating capacity of 850 persons. A staff of about 700 cooks, waiters, stewards, stewardesses and their service assistants will be required to prepare and serve this food to first, tourist and third class passengers, as well as members of the crew.

Especially interesting is the fact that the Queen Mary will be the first ship to have an exclusive steam generating plant for its hotel services, three of the ship's 27 boilers being reserved for this purpose. These boilers will operate independently from the Queen Mary's propelling machinery supplying all electricity necessary to run the ship's kitchens, bakeries, dumb waiters, refrigerating plant and allied services. The same electric system will operate the ship's 30,000 lamps, 1,000 fans, 21 elevators and supply hot and cold water to its passenger accommodations and two swimming pools.

07 July 2010

Back to the Great White North

From the Toronto Daily Star on this day in 1945:

Canadians Sail on Queen Mary
7,000 to Reach New York Wednesday

Special to The Star

Ottawa, July 7 - One of the largest groups of Canadian service personnel to return from overseas will be aboard the liner Queen Mary, which is expected to dock in New York city next Wednesday, it was announced today by national defence headquarters.

It is expected there will be nearly 7,000 Canadians aboard. Of this total 1,394 are from Military District No. 2 headquarters of which is in Toronto.

Returning personnel include drafts for the Canadian Pacific force, for repatriation, compassionate leave and liberated prisoners of war. There are no complete units included in the movement.

Queen Mary at Southampton, June 1946, between round trips to Nova Scotia & New York

06 July 2010

Il Duce Debarks

From the Berkeley Daily Gazette on this day in 1936:


By United Press

NEW YORK, July 6. - Mussolini is a real movie fan and favors making Rome a continental Hollywood, Walter Wagner, film producer, said today upon his arrival on the Queen Mary from conferences with the Italian premier.

"The next projection halls in Rome are in Mussolini's palace and the Vatican," he said. He had conferred with Il Duce on production of motion pictures in Italy.

05 July 2010

900 Children!

From The Montreal Gazette in 1946:

Queen Mary to Make One More Halifax Trip

Halifax, July 5. - (CP) - Army authorities said today the liner Queen Mary, which arrived here yesterday with 1,200 war brides and 900 children, will make at least one more trip here bringing out dependents of Canadian servicemen.

She was due to arrive again July 23.

04 July 2010

In Demand

From the column "NEW YORK DAY BY DAY" by O.O. McIntyre in The Milwaukee Sentinel on this day in 1936:

Incidentally the most highly competitive press agents' posts at the moment are those for the French Line Normandie and the British pride Queen Mary. It is indeed a battle for business with the two giants of the sea. And a meanie, with a dry little smile like Frank Case's who just dropped in suggests impounding them both at the local docks some sunny day and sending each nation a cable: So [illegible] won't pay.

03 July 2010


From The Glasgow Herald on this day in 1945:


Remaining on War Service

Hopes of an early return of the "Queen" ships to regular Transatlantic traffic were dashed by a statement in New York yesterday by Captain C. M. Ford, master of the Queen Elizabeth, that both the Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Mary are fully committed "for the duration plus six months" (states Reuter).

After that time the Queen Elizabeth was looking forward to an attempt to wrest the North Atlantic "blue riband" from the Queen Mary, he declared.

Captain Ford disclosed that, owing to circumstances attending her fitting out during the early days of the war and her clandestine run to New York, the Queen Elizabeth never went over the "measured mile" and her maximum speed was never fully established. She operated at 28 1/2 knots in most crossings.

The Queen Elizabeth, like the Queen Mary, had been kept thoroughly repaired and shipshape during her 48 round-trip voyages during the war as a troop carrier.


02 July 2010

Social & Personal

From the "Social & Personal" column of The Montreal Gazette on this day in 1946:
Mrs. Pierre Dupuy accompanied by her daughter and son, Jacqueline and Michel are sailing from New York on July 9 by the Queen Mary for Europe. Mrs. Dupuy and her children will join Mr. Dupuy, Canadian Minister to Holland.

01 July 2010

Movie Queen

From the "Hollywood" column of The Pittsburgh Press on this day in 1936:

On an entire sound stage there is built a reproduction of many sections of the steamship "Queen Mary." There is the gangplank, an upper deck, a lower deck, the smokestacks, etc. It is being used in the flicker "Dodsworth" when the Dodsworth-Ruth Chatterton and Walter Huston get started on that trip to Europe.

The "Queen Mary" is an important actress in the flicker. H. C. Potter and a cameraman went to New York for the arrival of the "Queen Mary," and with permission, took reels and reels of film. They have pictures of the "Queen Mary" with passengers boarding the boat, of baggage being hoisted on board; of the "Queen Mary" actually getting underway for the return trip to England.

When Chatterton and Huston sail on the "Queen Mary" in "Dodsworth," you will actually see the "Queen Mary" sailing and a grand job of mixing studio scenes with the real thing.

However, there is one difference between the "Queen Mary" and the studio's reproduction. The large ventilators on the "Queen Mary" are round and on the production they are square. The studio believes that squared they give the boat a better appearance. Leave it to the movies to improve the "Queen Mary."