13 December 2011
12 December 2011
04 December 2011
03 December 2011
02 December 2011
01 December 2011
Boarding the Queen Mary on this day in 1937 was Ernest Simpson, the former husband of Wallis Simpson, aka the Duchess of Windsor. He sailed for Britain with his new bride, the former Mary Raffray. Mr. Simpson is pictured here in earlier days with his former wife and her Aunt Bessie.
(Source: New York Times)
30 November 2011
18 November 2011
16 November 2011
15 November 2011
07 July 2011
The Queen Mary docked at New York yesterday morning at 8 o'clock with a large number of notables aboard, among them being Count Ladislas Szechneyi, former Hungarian minister to London; Countess Szechenyi, Lord St. Vigeans, Sir Malcolm and Lady Perks, Sir Cedric Hardwicke, motion picture star; Lady Hardwicke, Eugene Gossens, conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra; Mrs. Gossens; J. Milne Barbour, M.P., Minister of Commerce for Northern Ireland; Mrs. Van Storkenborgh, wife of the Dutch minister to Brussels; E. W. Cheadle, with a "See America" group; Little Miss D. Broughton, child film star on her way to Hollywood; Miles Mander, actor; W. Goodfellow, butter king of New Zealand; Mrs. Goodfellow, David Rubinoff, violinist and radio entertainer; Gene Sarazen, golfer; Dr. John R. Gregg, originator of the Gregg System of shorthand.Walter Wanger, who will build a film-producing city in Rome, Italy, also arrived in the Queen Mary. Premier Mussolini approves the idea. Sylvia Sidney will be the star in the first film to be made.
LINER INCIDENT RECALLED--The retirement of the Rev. S. Stephen Walker, for the past 37 years minister of Cranstoun parish, Midlothian, recalls his proposals for the completion of the liner Queen Mary during the depression. In a letter which received wide publicity he suggested that 50,000 Scots should be lend [sic] £1 each to allow building to be resumed. Letters and cheques flowed into his manse and he had to travel to Glasgow to interview the shipbuilders. He arrived when representatives of the then Cunard Shipping Company were discussing with the builders an offer of a Government loan.
Government consideration of the Cunard Company's plea for financial aid in the building of the two new "super" Queens is taking much longer than expected, writes Joseph Haines.When ministers first heard from Cunard's they overwhelmingly favoured, for prestige reasons, the replacement of the Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Mary.But now, I understand, their enthusiasm has somewhat cooled.Assistance of some sort is still likely but I gather that it will be in the form of a fixed-interest loan rather than a subsidy on construction or operation.A preliminary announcement of the Government's views should come before the end of this month.
WESTMINSTER, Thursday, The Governement have no intention at the moment of bringing in further legislation to assist Cunard Company to build a replacement for the Queen Mary.Two years ago they introduced the North Atlantic Shipping Bill, which, after a stormy passage through Parliament, did eventually reach the Statute Book.It empowered the Minister of Transport to help finance the construction of a ship for the North Atlantic trade by making advances to Cunard-White Star, Ltd., not exceeding £18m.But after the bill was passed the company decided that they did not at that time wish to proceed with the building of a further "Queen."Unhappy HistoryYesterday the Minister of Transport, Mr. Ernest Marples, said in a written parliamentary reply that the company were considering new proposals for a replacement for the Queen Mary. Their request was being considered, but no decision had yet been taken by Government.It seemed evident to-day that, in view of the unhappy history of the North Atlantic Shipping Act, the Government will not go out of their way to give priority to the Cunard company's new request.The Act became null and void when the company decided to turn down the facilities it offered. They cannot now expect Government assistance under its provisions.New legislation would be required for a large loan or grant--and this certainly will not come within the lifetime of the present Parliament.- The Glasgow Herald, July 5, 1963
10 June 2011
30 May 2011
A large number of Americans who attended the Coronation in London returned yesterday morning in the Cunard White Star liner Queen Mary. Among those arriving were: Lowell Thomas, news commentator; Truman Talley, vice-president of Fox Movietone News; Mrs. Talley; Sir Josiah Stamp, economist; Lady Stamp; The Marquis of Sligo; Sir William Wiseman, of Kuhn Loeb & Company.- The Montreal Gazette, May 25, 1937
HALIFAX, May 28--(CP)--With the stowaway total jumped to an unofficial seven, all were believed accounted for and still aboard the Queen Mary today when the giant liner sailed for New York to complete her Atlantic crossing.Special guards, posted right up to sailing time, were said to have uncovered two more unofficial travelers--both men--during the 24-hour stop here. Four men and a woman "about 30" were reported to have been flushed out from hiding places en route.All will be taken back to Britain after the Queen Mary discharges some 500 remaining civilian passengers in New York and picks up a return load, ships officers said.
LONDON (AP)--Nobel Prize winner T. S. Eliot was reported recovering today from a heart attack which felled him aboard the liner Queen Mary en route from New York.The American-born poet and playwright was taken in a wheel chair from the ship on arrival at Southampton early today and rushed by ambulance to the French Hospital in London.A hospital spokesman said Eliot was suffering from a "cardiac condition which has not proved too serious." He said the 67-year-old writer "won't have to stay here too long--just a few days rest is all he needs now."Fellow passengers aboard the Queen Mary said Eliot suffered a heart attack three days ago and spent the rest of the voyage in the ship's hospital. The ship's doctor declined comment.- The Portsmouth Times, May 24, 1956
SOUTHAMPTON, England--(Reuters)--The liner Queen Mary, the tried, true and steady-ruddered friend of trans-Atlantic tourism and romance, marks its 25th birthday today.After the Second World War, this giant of Britain's Cunard Line was dubbed the "bride ship" and with good reason.The Mary, the world's second biggest liner at 81,237 tons, carried 30 per cent of all war brides of American servicemen who travelled to their new homes under a U.S. government program.Then, in May of 1946, the Mary switched to ferrying the war brides of Canadian servicemen.The Mary also transported North American servicemen during the war.And since its May, 1936, maiden voyage--the occasion of this anniversary--the ship has carried 1,700,000 passengers, many of them North Americans, over 2,900,000 miles.Outweighed only by its 83,670-ton sister ship Queen Elizabeth, launched in 1938, it is named for the late Queen Mary, consort of the late King George V.Queen Mary, grandmother of the present Queen, performed the launching ceremony in 1934, becoming the first reigning English Queen to launch a merchant ship.The Queen Mary, steaming from its home port here in Southampton on England's south coast, is in mid-Atlantic bound for New York today for its anniversary.Cunard officials said the passengers will celebrate at a gala dinner.The Mary also has had its share of tragedy.During th war--Oct. 2, 1942--off the Irish coast, it plowed into an escorting British cruiser which lost 338 men as a result.Today, still a crack liner with 732 Atlantic crossings to its credit, the Mary is sailing along toward the end of its life.There are plans to replace her by 1965 with another giant Cunarder, though possibly not as big as the Queen Mary or the Queen Elizabeth.- The Montreal Gazette, May 27, 1961www.queenmarystory.com
18 April 2011
03 April 2011
This week in the history of the R. M. S. Queen Mary:
18 March 2011
GLASGOW, March 15.--What is going on inside the Cunard-White Star Queen Mary, largest liner in the world? She lies in her fitting out basin at Clydebank. What kind of a scene is there behind the grey wall of her massive hulk?The ship was launched last September. Ever since then an army of men, varying between 1,000 and 3,000 according to changing requirements, has labored, sometimes in night shifts as well as day, to prepare the Queen Mary for her maiden voyage next year. What progress has been made?All the 27 enormous boilers are in position. As they tower among the steel ladders of their boiler-rooms they appear as some gigantic phantasy. In comparison, the men working about them resemble trivial insects.The boilers are still red-leaded outside. Their interiors are being blackleaded. Fire bricks are being placed beneath, under th eyes of inspectors. Beneath each boiler a charcoal fire burns. These fires will be kept continuously alight until the time comes for the boilers to be used.There is a light overhead railway running around the side of the engine-room, to aid the adjustment of machinery. A good deal of the lighter portions of machinery affixed to the sides of the engine-room--"hanging stuff," as it is called--has been put into position already.Food of the GodsAnother prominent feature of the engine-room is the propeller gears surrounded by casings. The propeller shafts appear like the barrel of some Big Bertha gun of the future. They, too, seem to have eaten the food of the gods.The electric steering gear is completely installed. The various portions of plant and gear stand waiting: like squat searchlights in appearance, until the day when they will guide the great ship on her course. The electrical apparatus for pulling up the anchors is also installed.Throughout the ship there are apparently limitless vistas of corridor, lit by the glimmer of temporary lamps. Along some of the corridors are walls of plywood, and doors to cabins are making their appearance.Scores of workmen are busy painting great piles of planking with a fire-resisting preparation. Everywhere, too, is to be seen a new type of automatically-working steel door, which completely isolates any portion of the ship against a threat of either fire or sea.Just a slight push and the door, working on elaborate ball-bearings, swings to. A row of hooks snaps home and a steel bar falls into place.All the floors throughout the ship are of a new patent cement-like material, which will be covered with rubber tiles. Unlike wood floors, which deteriorate sooner or later, the cement-like base is virtually everlasting.Repeatedly among the naked red-painted steel plating there appear neatly stencilled directions, such as "Tourist Quarters F Deck," "Crew's Quarters," "Petty Officers Here," and "Stores" and the like. Amid the present rough surroundings these notices have rather the effect of the "Piccadilly Circus" or "Leicester Square" which the Tommy stuck up in the trenches during the war.Two Swimming PoolsStacks of piping stand in corners and are being fitted by an army of plumbers. Every pipe in this vast ship is of copper. There is not a single piece of lead pipe. Lift shafts gapingly await their lifts.There are two swimming pools. Both are well advanced. The first-class pool is contained on one of the highest rooms known either ashore or afloat. There are two galleries, one above the other, and a great staircase with two side staircases leading down to the diving board.Already workmen are putting the tiling in the pool itself, and the familiar marks of the depth--3ft., 6in., 4ft., etc.--appear amid the rough concrete of the bath's surroundings.The Tourist Class pool, though not so lofty in its surroundings as the other, is still markedly sumptuous. The decoration promises well. Bright blue pillars edged with polished steel surround the bath, and the walls are of an attractive grey stone, flecked with mother-of-pearl.A reminder of the vast appetites that the Queen Mary will cater for is afforded by the extent of the space set aside for cold storage rooms. In room after room men are busy packing a kind of cork composition into the thick walls that will house the refrigerators. There is a whole string of laconic indications stencilled along the storage room, "Ripening Fruit," "Green Vegetables," "Kosher Meat," and so on.In the crew's quarters neat rows of wooden lockers are in place while in the store rooms are sheet-metal cupboards and drawers. The dining room soars loftily. No fitting of any kind has yet appeared in it. Piles of planks which are being treated with fire-resisting paint are piled on its floor. Near by the "writing-room" remains a name only. "Hospital," too, exists only in outline and in title.Down in the bowels of the ship a deep tank where the water ballast will be stored has been exhaustively tested for weeks on end.The main promenade deck, wide and stately as a miniature Champs Elysees, is taking shape. The sun windows are in and the crew are laying planking.On the quay near the ship lie her two masts. When it is said that a rivetter can sit almost bolt upright at his work inside the mainmast, it gives an idea of its size. They are vast cylinders of steel tapering gracefully.When they are installed, the liner will have to be taken into the river. It is likely that all the Clyde traffic will be held up for half a day or so while this is done.The scene from the towering bridge: Glasgow and the countryside fall away remotely, like London seen from the Monument; great warehouses and ships nearby are dwarfed as if they were viewed from a cliff top.On the upper decks lie great circular irons. They are intended for the boiler rooms, and will be installed in the next few days.The cylinder through which the anchor chains run gapes in the deck like a shell hole. "The largest ever," it is several feet in diameter. Near by are the capstans, on she same heroic scale as all else.A minor exterior alteration has been decided upon. The lettering of the name Queen Mary which was first placed on the vessel's bows, was too large. The letters have been removed and smaller ones are now being substituted.Day and night a man is stationed in the stern of the ship, where she juts out to the Clyde. He rings a warning bell at the approach of any ship as a sign for it to reduce speed.
WINNIPEG, March 14--Two Winnipeg girls, bored with office work, last night left on the first leg of a round-the-world trip.Off to satisfy wanderlust are Amelia Zurick, 26, and Nancy Halford, 28. They plan to travel by thumb, bicycle and luck. They did not disclose how much money they are taking.The aspiring globe-trotters, who Friday quit their jobs as record clerks at the unemployment insurance commission, sail March 23 on the Queen Mary for England, their first stop.
Sir Norman and Lady Martin, of South Yarra, will be guests of honor at several farewell parties before they leave for London in the Himalaya next month.While in London they will make their headquarters at The Whitehouse, Regent's Park.After a tour of the Continent they will travel in the Queen Mary to New York, then travel overland to Miami. They will return to Melbourne in the Oriana.
08 March 2011
28 February 2011
The luxury liner, Queen Elizabeth, leaves a weekly laundry of 30,000 towels, 25,000 napkins, 5000 sheets and pillow cases and a small mountain of other items every time she docks at Jersey City. When her sister ship, the Queen Mary, comes in, she picks up the Queen Elizabeth's clean laundry and leaves hers to be scrubbed. Sounds like a good family cooperative plan. Laundry always is a problem, even if the family washing is slightly smaller than a steamship's. However, with the proper equipment, the task is much easier. That's why so many housewives have bought modern washing machines...
...One of Cunard's public relations staff, Jim Murray, was waiting for us at Pier 90 the other day to escort us on a look-see of the vessel. And it took us something like three hours, with time-out for lunch, to see her highlights from stem to stern. It was something like going through a miniature city with all the populace away on a picnic or something.Mr. Murray, we soon learned, knows his way about the Queen Mary. We went through this corridor and that. From the grand lounge of the luxurious first class to the less pretentious, but nevertheless comfortable, public rooms of the cabin and tourist class.Lunch time found us at the Queen Mary's main restaurant--which is an excellent place to be at lunch time.You can't help feeling a bit exclusive when you have lunch, practically alone, in the largest room ever built in a ship...regardless of its immense size it has an air of cozy elegance about it--and a perfect setting for a menu including filet, lobster and crepe suzettes.
22 February 2011
On this day in 1938, director Victor Saville was aboard the Queen Mary heading for England to direct the film South Riding for Metro.
He is pictured above aboard the ship the following year.
New York Times
19 February 2011
Tom Webster was on the overseas phone from London. He's doing eighty oil paintings for the gym of the Cunard Line's new "Queen Mary." Calling it "Cavalcade of Sport." He will appreciate your asking readers to suggest what sports figures should be included. And they should address him care of London Daily Mail.
- The Rochester Journal February 14, 1936
THE QUEEN MARY IN AUSTRALIA
NEW YORK, Feb. 15 (CP).--Capt. George B. Young of Bergenfield, N.J., has one inflexible rule: When he has a date with a "Queen" he gets to bed early the night before.As a docking pilot with a big tugboat firm, he has regular dates twice a month with the two biggest queens in the world: the liners Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary. He is entrusted with bringing the big ships into their berths in the Hudson River and of course must be completely awake when he's on the bridge.Young, who has had his first-class pilot's license since he was 21 and has been a docking pilot for 15 years, board the Queens near Battery Place at the lower end of Manhattan Island, relieving the harbor pilot who has brought the ship in from Ambrose Light."Make sure you say that the ship's master is always in charge," he says. "He doesn't turn that Queen over to us until he's confident we know how to handle her."The world's largest liners are coaxed into their docks with a whistle. Young's signals from the bridge have to be picked up by a sailor and relayed to tugs on the starboard bow. Stern tugs, far out of reach of the whistle, get their signals from the ship's mighty horn. Tug pilots repeat the signals before following them so there will be no mistakes.Everything is figured in advance--wind, tides, weight of the ship, the number of tugs needed, the pilots who handle the tugs."I consider the pilots as much as I do the tugs--they really know their business," says Young.Young's business if varied. One Sunday he docked the 80,000-ton Queen Elizabeth. The next day it was a 4,000-ton banana boat.All jobs are the same to him, but he considers his toughest was when he put the big Dutch liner Nieuw Amsterdam into dry dock in Erie Basin in 1946.- The Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, February 15, 1951
...the provision of a new first class cocktail bar, and the transfer of an additional spacious public room to tourist class, are being made during the current overhaul of the Queen Mary which will be completed by March 10.
12 February 2011
Great Britain launched a fight today to regain the blue ribbon honors of the north Atlantic through the formal announcement of the merger of the Cunard and White Star shipping lines with the government assisting financially.Work consequently is expected to be hastened on the unfinished giant "534," now on the stocks of Clydebank, so that the new "queen of the waters" can enter a speed race with Germany's Bremen and Europa and Italy's new Rex as soon as possible.The new company, to be called Cunard-White Star Ltd., will have a combined fleet of 25 ships under its flag, headed by Cunard's Berengaria and Mauretania and White Star's Majestic.The merger which followed upon two years of negotiations has practically been in effect since Jan. 1 when accounts of the firms were combined.The "534"--it has no other name yet--is designed to be the biggest ship afloat. According to previously announced plans it will cost about $25,000,000 and be of 73,000 tons.Contracts for it were let in December 1930, and more than $9,000,000 was expended on it before construction was suspended more than a year ago.
Saigon, French Indo-China - (AP) - Travelers reaching here from Singapore, Britain's great far eastern naval base, said Sunday that the British have concentrated 90,000 troops there and that extensive land, sea and air defense practice operations are under way. They said the 81,235 ton liner Queen Mary had taken a contingent of Australian troops there and that a "large" British fleet was participating in the defense maneuvers.
The Liner Queen Mary was safely docked here today after arriving 25 hours late with some 50 of her 1848 passengers nursing injuries suffered on a rough Atlantic crossing...the [ship] was not damaged during the stormy voyage which took a day longer than her usual four and a half days from New York.Ship's doctor said about 50 casualties were dealt with on the trip but none were hospitalized. Three persons had broken bones. Most of the injuries were trivial, the doctor said.
Feb. 9. (AP)--The parachute and instruments of a weather research balloon were found today hanging on a funnel of the liner Queen Mary.It was believed the rig landed while the liner was in the English channel on her way to Southampton last night. A Cunard line spokesman described the landing as "A million-to-one chance."www.queenmarystory.com
05 February 2011
An upper peninsula firm, the Birds Eye Veneer company, of Escanaba, was commissioned to supply 100,000 square feet of birds eye maple veneer to London to be used for the interior woodwork of the Queen Mary, palatial steamship that was launched by the merged Cunard and White Star lines in England last September. The veneer was shipped last week.
AUSTRALIAN ENGINEER'S DEATHLONDON, Feb. 4
Mr. Kenneth Hugh McLean, a noted engineer who was born in Australia, died today. He was head of a Glasgow boat-building firm, and he designed unsinkable lifeboats for the Queen Mary, the Queen Elizabeth, and the Normandie. -A.A.P.
'QUEENS' OF SOCCER
28 January 2011
This week in the history of the R. M. S. Queen Mary:
The New York Times reported on January 27, 1932 that Cunard was seeking a loan from the British government to continue its work on 534--the future Queen Mary.
Work on the giant Cunard liner, 534, depends mainly upon, whether the Government will extend to the company loan facilities similar to those under which the Lusitania and Mauretania were built before the war, it is apparent from a statement by the directors issued tonight.
From the Miami News on January 24, 1946:
The United States has offered Britain the use of 11 Liberty ships as a substitute for the arrangement under which American troops are ferried home aboard the Queen Mary at a tentative charge of $100 each.
Government officials said the offer has not yet been accepted.
Presumably, the British are weighing the need for troop carriers for their own Tommies and Colonials against that of reaching a settlement which would supplement their dollar credit in this country.
Since the end of lend-lease Sept. 2, the Queen Mary has brought home 84,804 American troops.
Together [with the Queen Elizabeth]--unless the present charge is reduced or the American offer of the Liberty ships is accepted--the total charge to this country would be $11,419,600 as of now.
While lend-lease still was in effect the British bore the cost of transporting GIs abroad the two "Queens" as part of the reverse lend-lease.
Technically, a fee of 20 pounds, or roughly $100, was assessed against this government for each man. This, however, was wiped out at the time of the final lend-lease settlement and did not involve any cash changing hands.
When lend-lease ended, the same charge was retained. But government officials said today this, too, is subject to revision when the job of bringing home the troops has been completed.
As compared with the tentative charge, the price of a one-way, third-class, transatlantic passage aboard one of the "Queens" before the war was approximately $86. Third class accommodations then, however, would be regarded as luxurious in comparison with the tier-on-tier arrangement now in effect.
From the video archive of British Pathe on January 29, 1953:
Mr. Churchill Arrives Back in the United Kingdom
The Toledo Blade reported on January 28, 1966 that faulty wiring in an electric motor aboard the Queen Mary caused a fire and sent fumes throughout the liner. She had just emerged from dry dock after her annual overhaul. No passengers were aboard and no crew were injured.