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1930s

The Yale and the Harvard – California’s Night Boats between Los Angeles and San Francisco

The SS Yale and SS Harvard became known as “white Flyers of the Pacific”! The sister ships each made four sailings a week, carrying 565 First Class passengers at an average speed of 23 knots between the two major California cities. The fast coastal ships provided an overnight cruise on the Pacific. They were a very popular way for traveling between ... Read More »

Remembering the Pullman Porters

Benjamin Gaines, 93, worked as a Pullman porter from 1945 to 1954. “The porters, believe it or not, we had a celebrity status,” he said in an interview with the Chicago Tribune. (Cover Photo: CW: Janet Leigh, star of Hitchcock’s PSYCHO boarding the Super Chief in fashion layout; Porter during the 1960s looking out at the Kansas prairie: Pullman Porter’s ... Read More »

San Francisco’s fabulous Fox Theatre was a lesson in the city’s tenuous loyalty and devotion.

San Francisco,Fox Theatre,Herb Caen,Pullman,SP Lark, Gary Cooper, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Joan Crawford,Art Deco,William Fox, Market Street, largest theatre,El Capitan Theatre, Los Angeles Theatre,Fox Organist,Jamie Erickson, michael l grace, cruiselinehistory, cruise the past

When the Fox Theater was built in 1929, it seemed as if there weren’t enough adjectives to describe the movie theater’s magnificence. The San Francisco Chronicle called the opening “a spectacle of such beauty and magnitude that it seemed rather a fancy of one’s mind rather than the inaugural night of another commercial enterprise.” OPENING NIGHT But the life of ... Read More »

The luxurious liner Awatea was the “only way to cross” the Tasman Sea from Australia to New Zealand!

Far away from the Trans-Atlantic services – “Down Under” – Union Steam Ship Company operated a fleet of excellent passenger ships between Australia and New Zealand until 1960. In her day the Awatea was regarded as one of the most luxurious and fastest liners of the period. Her history was brief and she was destroyed in World War2 like so ... Read More »

Ritz-Carlton – Elegance from the cruising past meets a new Yacht Collection of select Cruise Ships.

Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection. luxury resorts, Mediterranean, Northern Europe, the Caribbean, Latin America, Canada, northeastern United States, Holland American Line, SS Rotterdam, United States Lines, SS Leviathan, Hamburg America Line, SS Vaterland, Chef Sven Elverfeld

The first of Ritz-Carlton’s Yacht Collection ships hit the water for the first time recently at a shipyard in Vigo, Spain. Cruises don’t begin until February 2020, but reservations are open for one of the newest luxury cruise lines around. They will be newest and finest small cruising vessels afloat. The new ships will be customized, in keeping with the ... Read More »

Albert Ballin created the first pleasure cruise aboard Hamburg-America Line’s S.S. Augustus Victoria in the Gilded Age.

The German shipping magnate was responsible for turning Germany into a world leader in ocean travel prior to World War I. With 25,000 employees, Hapag was the largest shipping line in the world for both freight and people (464,000 passengers in 1913). It was Albert Ballin who also invented the pleasure cruise in 1891. The first Pleasure Cruise The world’s ... Read More »

Chicago’s streamlines ELECTROLINER – 90 MPH north to Milwaukee

The North Shore Line’s Electroliners streamline interurban trains operated from the 1940s into the early 1960s. For most street railway and interurban lines the coming of the automobile put an end to an industry that was just a few decades old.  The 1920s and the Great Depression later that decade bankrupted and shutdown many intermediate lines while the strongest companies ... Read More »

Retro Thursday: The CHICAGO CUBS cruise to Catalina

CATALINA ISLAND, CHICAGO CUBS

Chewing gum magnate William Wrigley Jr.’s twin interests in baseball and Catalina Island – he bought Catalina in 1919 and gained a controlling interest in the Chicago Cubs in 1921 – dovetailed nicely when he made the decision to have the Cubs train on Catalina starting in 1921.  In doing so, he became the first baseball owner to bring a ... Read More »

Enjoy watching a 1929 home movie onboard the SS Nantucket cruising from Florida to Savannah!

Known as the “Queen of Sea,” the Merchants and Miners Transportation Company Steamship Line operated one of the finest fleets of passenger steamers on the Atlantic Coast and ranked foremost as one of America’s top tourist routes. It was said to be the only line plying between Baltimore, Savannah, and Jacksonville. Home movie aboard the Merchants and Miners Trans Co ... Read More »

RED CARPET treatment started with the 20TH CENTURY LIMITED

20th Century Limited, New York Central, Red Carpet, Marshall Field, Bing Crosby,  Robert R. McCormick, Bob Hope, Bette Davis,  Doris Day, Wrigleys, Henry Dreyfuss Art Deco, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Beatrice Lilly, Carole Lombard,  John Barrymore, Alfred Hitchcock, North by Northwest,  all-Pullman, streamliner, MICHAEL L GRACE, CRUISING THE PAST

Have you wondered where the much-overused phrase “the red carpet treatment” originated? It all started with the 20th Century Limited. The train of tycoons and movie stars. The “Century” was an express all-Pullman passenger train operated by the New York Central nightly from New York to Chicago. From 1938 until the last run in 1968, passengers walked down a crimson carpet ... Read More »

The Italian Line’s S.S. REX and Cary Grant’s S.S. REX…

Rex, Cary Grant, Gambling Ship, Los Angeles, Cruising The Past, Michael L Grace

Besides the fabulous Italian ocean liner S.S. REX launched in 1931, there was another S.S. REX. The gambling ship off the coast of California in the 1930s and 1940s. The far lesser (but profitable)REX was operated as a gambling ship off Los Angeles by Anthony Cornero. Gary Grant made a movie in the early 1930s based on the gambling boats. ... Read More »