Happy Mother’s Day

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This is a few days late but since last fall there have been so many things happening that our blogs have suffered. One of the things going on has been our moving as a prelude to retirement. In the process a good many things resurface that have been, not lost, just out of reach. Among these are some pictures of Margaret Edythe Young’s daughter that we publish here.

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Margaret Edythe Young was a mother and her daughter would become one as well. After that there would be a two generation poverty of daughter’s in the family but finally her great grandson would become the father of a daughter who would be her first great great grandchild.

laureene2When we found these pictures we shared them with friends – they are after all pictures of my mother – and the unsolicited and unprompted reaction was that they were pictures of Margaret Edythe Young’s great great grand daughter. There is a fabric and a continuity to life and families – the pictures were taken at Margaret Edythe Young’s father’s house – that is a comfort, maybe more of one as we age.

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To my grandmother and my mother – who are not so much gone as gone before – and to my grand daughter who loves her dollies as much as those who came before her ever did I say, “Happy mother’s day”.

The World’s Commerce Has A New Highway – Part II

The United States enjoy a somewhat unique position in that they are geographically situated between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and where the 19th century was directed almost entirely towards interactions across the Atlantic the 20th century would see the Pacific rise to almost equal prominence thanks in large part to the Panama Canal and the western search for both resources and markets in the east. That the Canal and the World War both opened in 1914 was, in large part, coincidental and their effect on one another was more peripheral than direct but by 1918 the Canal would become one of the many factors that would see the “new” world replace the “old” as the locus of commerce and power globally.

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On June 28, 1914 the Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife were assassinated as the result of a Serbian, Muslim and Russian conspiracy which led directly to the declaration of war by the Austria-Hungarian empire on Serbia on the 28th of July and on Russia on August 6th. Germany, allied with Austria-Hungary, but largely for geopolitical reasons of its own invaded France on August 2 and Belgium on August 3. Great Britain, nominally allied with Russia, but also largely for geopolitical reasons of her own – especially German colonial encroachments in Africa and the far east, declared war on Germany on August 4. With a weather eye for political consequences Woodrow Wilson kept the United States neutral until he could recover from the 63 seat loss in the House in the mid-term elections of 1914 and secure another term for himself in 1916 – campaigning on the slogan, He kept us out of the war! – and did not maneuver us into the war until one month after his second inauguration.

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One of the first indications of how the war might impact shipping was an announcement in the Galveston Daily News of August 16, 1914 that American interests were considering the purchase of Hamburg American Line vessels – including the ss Vaterland [the largest steamer in the world] – many of which had been tied up at Hoboken since the hostilities between Great Britain and Germany had started. Of more immediate importance to Galveston was the news that 180 German passengers had arrived on the Mallory Line steamer Huron since the German flagged Brandenburg had not been allowed to make the trip. Interestingly the Huron was scheduled to sail from Galveston to New York on August 19th with accommodations for 301 first-class passengers, large airy staterooms, broad open promenades, social halls and smoking rooms – First Class, $45.00; third class, $22.50. The paper also carried and announcement from the Fowler and McVitie agency that, Immediately the Panama Canal is opened a frequent service will be maintained in connection with the regular fifteen day service from New York.
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To recognize the true importance of the Panama Canal consider the voyage from Galveston to China [Shanghai]. Going via the new canal the trip took 42 days versus either 58 days via Suez, 63 days via Good Hope or 72 days via Cape Horn. The Galveston Daily News of August 16, 1914 carried an advertisement for the new South Atlantic, Gulf and Orient Line with service from Galveston to Japan and China as cargo offers and on August 17th, under the Movements Ocean Vessels reports, the ss Eburna is reported as leaving Port Eads, Louisiana for Yokohama, Japan via the Panama Canal – the first such report we have found.

 

Site of the Naval Station Tutuila [Samoa], showing Fagatogo beach and the coaling dock, looking east, 1900

Site of the Naval Station Tutuila [Samoa], showing Fagatogo beach and the coaling dock, looking east, 1900

Appropriately, or maybe ironically, eburna is a genus of sea snails in the family Olividae because steaming at 10 knots by the most direct route this trip would have taken 38 days. Unfortunately the steamships of this age did not carry sufficient coal which produced only about two-thirds the energy that oil-fired boilers would while occupying thirty percent more space so the likely route for the ss Eburna was South Pass to Canal Zone to Los Angeles to Honolulu to Yokohama which would have added four days and 1,000 miles steaming to the trip. For John W. Young the so-called slow boat to China would have been even slower with a routing through Samoa and Manila that would have covered nearly 13,000 nautical miles and would have taken 54 days!

 

Naval Station Sangley Point [Manila] coaling station.

Naval Station Sangley Point [Manila] coaling station.

When you review a map of territorial acquisitions by the United States it comes readily evident that Alaska, interestingly enough Midway which was acquired in 1867, and Hawaii were all centered around the northern Pacific whaling fleet and trade between San Francisco and the orient, primarily Japan. Once China was opened to western trade the southern islands of Guam, Samoa, Tutulia and the Philippines became necessary fueling and repair stations first for naval vessels and then for the commerce that followed the flag and the fleet. Where goods had come from the far east in car loads they now came into Galveston by shiploads and added to the tonnage from the war effort the Port would work seven days a week until the 1920’s enjoying an unprecedented prosperity..

 

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The World’s Commerce Has A New Highway

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This was a headline in The Galveston Daily News on August 16, 1914 and gives us our starting point in telling the story of John W. Young, the son of Captain John Young and the brother of Margaret Edythe Young. In a long life he would be as involved in the maritime and political life of Galveston as his father and his grandfather, Maurice Coffey. He missed out on being a Yankee Doodle Dandy by three days having been born on July 1, 1882 but by the time this chapter opens he was a Captain of Company 6 of the Texas Coastal Artillery following in the tradition of his maternal great-grandfather who had served under Magruder defending the Island from federal invasion during the War for Southern Independence. By way of background the reader needs an appreciation of Texas, Galveston and the trans Pacific trade prior to the opening of the canal.

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One of the abiding myths of history is that prior to the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 the only commercial route from the Atlantic to the Pacific was by way of the Cape of Good Hope at the southern tip of Africa or via Cape Horn at the southern tip of South America. Ever since Vasco Núñez de Balboa crossed the Isthmus of Panama to the Pacific Ocean in 1513 becoming the first European to reach the Pacific from the New World a wide variety of travellers and merchants had followed the same – or similar – routes. Before the building of the Transcontinental Railway the California Gold Rush was populated by fortune hunters – the heartiest could cross the isthmus on the old Las Cruces Trail in a little less than a week – with river boats and steamers operating out of Chages starting in 1853 reducing the trip to about half a day and finally, with the completion of the Panama Railroad in 1855 the trip could be made in three hours.

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Competing with the Panamanian route was the The Isthmus of Tehuantepec in Mexico. It is the shortest distance between the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean, and prior to the opening of the Panama Canal was a major shipping route known  as the Tehuantepec Route. James B. Eads proposed to construct a quadruple track ship-railway and the plan challenged early plans for the Panama Canal. The railway, when completed in 1909 was 191 miles long serving ports with a minimum depth at low water 33 feet and an extensive system of docks and railway tracks at both terminals to afford facilities for heavy cargos. Tehuantepec was a common destination for cargos to and from Galveston throughout the last quarter of the nineteenth and the first quarter of the twentieth centuries but even though it was closer to the United States the failure to build the ship railroad and the economies of scale realized with the Panama Canal made it the game changer in international trade.

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The other thing that the reader needs to be aware of is that the United States Army operated in a very different way prior to the First World War. There were functions – the Army Corps of Engineers would be a good example for Galveston – that answered to a central command ultimately emanating from the Department of War in Washington, D. C., however most of the functions were state units that were effectively under the control of the governors and the president could only raise large bodies of troops by having the governors call out militias under their command and having the troops federalized and placed under Department of War command. Effectively many of the regimental officers, who had been elected by the men who served under them, retained the daily direction of their units and the transition was largely transparent.

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Interestingly our story takes place before the Texas troops were federalized – which would happen in 1916 to fight under Pershing in Mexico and again in 1917 to fight in Europe – and Captain John W. Young was dispatched by Governor William P. Hobby to gain an appreciation of the Canal and of potential eastern trading partners and the impact they would have on Texas trade. Young and Hobby were both friends and political allies with members of the Young family supporting Hobby in Galveston especially among the longshoremen and labor unions and Hobby would also appoint the senior John Young as Commissioner of Pilots for the Galveston bar. The photographs that illustrate these entries are taken from an album kept by John W. Young on a final voyage before the world, and him with it, would enter the century of war.

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An Outpost of Progress – The Narrative – And so, farewell to Venezuela

Tom Jenkins with shrunken, mummified head. Head shrunken down by head hunters of interior of Venezuela 1937.

Tom Jenkins with shrunken, mummified head. Head shrunken down by head hunters of interior of Venezuela 1937.

When I was a boy and you went to the movies there were trailers for upcoming films, short subjects and cartoons that preceded the feature film and getting there in time to see all of them was part of getting your money’s worth – even if it was much less than a dollar for admission in those days. A common short feature was a travelogue for some far away place with a strange-sounding name and the narrator often signed off with, And so, farewell to…, before the raucous cacophony of a cartoon that promised more violence than any feature film dared. I can not begin to tell you how many such adventures I shared with Bill Leach when I was a boy and in tribute to those happy days I will close out this true life adventure of his using those words as the preamble.

Bill served several years in Venezuela but the diary that I found among his papers covered mainly 1937 – although the accompanying photographs cover 1938 as well. In 1937 he was a graduate engineer with a work history and more than a few other adventures behind him but he was still foot loose and fancy free not yet having met Laureene with whom he would spend the next fifty plus years. It may have been her influence that kept the manuscript closed up in a drawer for the best part of sixty years and even though I knew bits and pieces of the story I left it there for another fifteen until the confluence of the blogosphere and the desire to tell a story to my children and grandchildren caused me to transcribe it and scan the pictures in and publish for friends and family.

Most of what I have published dealt with his association with Standard Oil in the early days of developing the eastern Venezuelan oil fields. There are tales of the oil patch in the jungle and of the camradie of the cabin and the canteen as well as adventures on the high seas and in the low dives of Caracas and Ciudad Bolivar. What is absent in the narrative but was ever-present in the stories he used to share with me are the tales of the native peoples – the indigenous Indians – who still constitute such a large part of the Venezuelan population. The stories I heard were not of head hunters and poison arrows – although they hung someplace over the horizon in an impenetrable jungle – but rather of kind and generous people living off the land and the river who had no particular need of oil wells but were grateful to have outboard motors for their currials, would gladly use a Ford truck to haul a heavy load and loved the freedom from the night that a generator could provide.

This final entry in this series is largely a photo essay containing pictures taken by Bill that relate part of his story and part of theirs.

Native house in village of Mata Negra near Temblador.

Native house in village of Mata Negra near Temblador.

Rio Tenoro - one of the many highways for the native peoples

Rio Tenoro – one of the many highways for the native peoples

Looking toward Caroni Falls - Chris Mireau, Don Bancroft, Buck Ackerman, native pilot - in a currial on the Caroni River

Looking toward Caroni Falls – Chris Mireau, Don Bancroft, Buck Ackerman, native pilot – in a currial on the Caroni River

Native house on the banks of Orinoco River near San Felice

Native house on the banks of Orinoco River near San Felice

Street in Caripito Village looking from Caripito Camp.

Street in Caripito Village looking from Caripito Camp.

Street scene in Caripito Village near Rio Caripe

Street scene in Caripito Village near Rio Caripe

Calabash Fruit, Cumarebo, State of Falcon, Venezuela 1937

Calabash Fruit, Cumarebo, State of Falcon, Venezuela 1937

Method of pressing poisonous juice out of Cassava Pulp. Caripito, Venezuela 1937

Method of pressing poisonous juice out of Cassava Pulp. Caripito, Venezuela 1937

Making Cassava Bread

Making Cassava Bread

Scene in Mata Verada Village.

Scene in Mata Verada Village.

Native huts in village west of Caripito Camp - on road to water pump station.

Native huts in village west of Caripito Camp – on road to water pump station.

Village street in Caripito

Village street in Caripito

Native hut.

Native hut.

Native huts in Mata Negra.

Native huts in Mata Negra.

Thatched huts in Caripito Village [note intrusion of sheet metal in lower left]

Thatched huts in Caripito Village [note intrusion of sheet metal in lower left]

The end!

The end!

An Outpost of Progress – The Narrative – Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more

PROLOGUE: Bill Leach’s first trip to Venezuela was made on a tanker as was his trip home for his vacation but his return to Venezuela was made by a passenger liner of a mail service company which meant it was a relatively new and relatively fast ship. Although many take cruises today the liner experience, like travelling by train, is largely a thing of the past. The accommodations were comfortable, the food was good and the amenities were pleasant. There was not a cruise director nagging at your every waking moment and the ships were by and large filled with people who were actually going someplace and not part of the Geritol for lunch bunch set floating around waiting on God. These were working ships and had the dignity of purpose that goes with the title.

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To comply with its mail contracts, Grace had agreed to build four new ships. These the SANTA ROSA class were ordered from Federal Shipbuilding Co. Kearney, New Jersey and delivered in 1932-1933. They were designed by William Francis Gibbs, who had also drawn plans of Matson’s MALOLO and later to draw those of the AMERICA and the record-breaker UNITED STATES.

These ships had some general resemblance to MALOLO, with her great beam and low stern. their original gross tonnage of 11,200 was later reduced to 9,100 by the cutting of tonnage openings in # 6 shelter deck. Subsequently their tonnage was again changed, all of which reduced tonnage dues and Panama Canal tolls. Their overall length was 508 ft. and beam 72 ft.

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Their power plants were at the time second to none in efficiency. Each of the water tube steam generators with a pressure of 430 lbs. produced 6000 hp. and each ship could make 18-1/2 knots with only three boilers active. The main engines were double reduction turbines. The screws turned inward, and for this reason were very awkward to maneuver. The passenger capacity of the SANTA ROSA class was 209 in first class and about 50 in steerage. Their public rooms were all on the promenade deck, with the dining salon extending two and a half decks in height to a roll back dome. The after dining room bulkhead was adorned with a large oil painting of a Grace clipper. Each cabin, whether single or double was equipped with private bath.

With the new quartet the Grace Line established the first passenger service between New York and Seattle. Calls were made at Havana, Puerto Colombia, Cartagena, Canal Zone, Punta Arenas, La Libertad, San Jose, Mazatlan, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Victoria. The first ship the SANTA ROSA sailed November 26, 1932; the last, SANTA ELENA, April 4, 1933. New York Seattle running time was 20 days, including one day in Los Angeles and two in San Francisco. Average speed 18-1/2 knots. Before the New York sailing, each ship called at Philadelphia for cargo only.

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In 1934 the port time in New York was greatly reduced and the call at Philadelphia eliminated. The time saved enabled the ships to make a shuttle run between Seattle and San Francisco. The 20 knot service and the ship’s superior accommodations to anything the Pacific Coast shipping had to offer made this an exceedingly popular run.

It was not long before other companies complained that, since Grace ships were subsidized for foreign trade they should not compete in the coastwise business. By the end of 1934 Seattle ceased to be a port of call and the voyage ended in San Francisco. Since three ships could now maintain the service, the SANTA LUCIA was reassigned to the South American run. Late in 1936 Grace acquired the Red D Line and its Caribbean Service, and early in 1937 SANTA ROSA, SANTA PAULA and SANTA ELENA entered that service: New York to Venezuela, Curacao, Colombia, Cristobal and Haiti.

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Vacation time over good old U.S. up to May 5th at which time I was ready to sail again for Venezuela.
May 5th took the Grace liner “Santa Rosa” with a rather good-sized bunch of refinery workers also destined to go to Caripito. Pete Willis was my roommate on this trip.

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Had a relatively good time on the cruise.   Of course I would meet as usual my brown-eyed “Susan”.  Anyway, her name was Anne Watsik and I expect to hear a good deal from her. Also met a Helen Korday who turned out to be a real fine girl – she was on the cruise boat taking a rest cure. Many other passengers were fine, especially the U. S. Naval group that was headed for Cartagena and Barranquilla, Colombia.

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Stopped at the Dutch Island of Curacao and had a fairly good time but what a place.  Many negroes, Englishmen, Arabians, Spaniards, etc. cluttered up the island.  The houses were again the typical loud-colored painted type as at Aarangastaad, Aruba.

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Arrived in La Guaira on the 10th of May and went through the customs.  In the afternoon we left our luggage at the Hotel Miramar, Macuto and then proceeded to enjoy myself by an excursion trip to Caracas. Sure had an unhealthy ride with the taxi driver for he took no regard for caution or the dangerous and curvy hilly climb.
Left La Guaira on the Caripiteno on the 11 th and headed for Guanta, which I reached on the 12 th.  Remained there overnight.  Left Guanta on the 13 th and headed for Caripito, where we arrived at noon on Sunday the 14  th.

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An Outpost of Progress – The Narrative – The Long Voyage Home

PROLOGUE: One of the advantages – maybe the only one – of being an expatriate is that after a long absence from home, anyplace from 6 to 18 months generally, you get sent back on a long vacation, 30 to 90 days. Since you are removed from the job site and far enough away to be out of communication it is generally a genuine vacation. After his first tour in Venezuela Bill Leach found himself bound back for the Port of New York for his first leave.

In a few short years things would happen to the ship he travelled on, to ship’s he saw and to places he saw. But this was before the Hindenburg blew up at Lakehurst and during the heyday of American dirigibles, it was before u-Boats would prowl the Gulf of Mexico and U. S. East Coast almost at will and it was before a war that would change everything. His account includes sailing through heavy weather and the way north and the sensitive with literary pretensions will probably want to make much of this as a harbinger of things to come from the storm clouds festering over Europe at the time. If he had any ideas that a war would demand his attention in three short years there is no indication of it here – the storm is simply a storm. In hindsight we have noted some of the things that happened subsequent to his travels out of a sense of poignancy and because we think they help complete the story.

PAUL H. HARWOOD a US single screw steam tanker capable of making 10 knots of 7,193 gross registered tons  was 435 feet long x 56 feet abeam. Purchased by Standard Oil Co. in 1935 she was in service until 1949.

PAUL H. HARWOOD a US single screw steam tanker capable of making 10 knots of
7,193 gross registered tons was 435 feet long x 56 feet abeam. Purchased by
Standard Oil Co. in 1935 she was in service until 1949.

Time is really flying by and vacation time is just around the corner.
Left Mata Negra Camp on March first, rode to the Boca de Aracoa where I was to get on board the Caripiteno and thence to Caripito.  Arrived in Caripito on the 2nd , and made arrangements to get for home.  Sailed 12:30 p.m. from the Caripito Terminal, arrived at Guiria at about 5:30 p.m. and had to wait for the high tide due to the low sand bar at the entrance to the Gulf of Paria.  Sometime during the night we arrived at Guiria.  When morning finally arrived our tanker Paul H. Harwood was being filled with oil.  Left Guiria 12 a.m. and sailed for the island of Aruba where we were to discharge our oil cargo.

Between 10.16 and 10.17 hours on 7 Jul, 1942, U-67 fired four torpedoes at three ships about 40 miles southwest of Southwest Pass, reported one hit and assumed that one tanker sank at 10.45 hours. The Paul H. Harwood (Master George Rasmussen) was hit by one torpedo while steaming at 12 knots in a small convoy of four ships being escorted by one destroyer. The torpedo struck on the port side abaft amidships at the #6 tank and blew a hole 15 feet by 12 feet into the hull, causing the flooding of tanks #5, #6 and #7. The tanker was stabilized by counterflooding the forward tanks and continued on her course at 10 knots into Southwest Pass to Burwood, Louisiana. She anchored at Pilottown and then proceeded to New Orleans. None of the eight officers, 32 crewmen and 16 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 4in, one 3in and four 20mm guns) reported an injury. The tanker arrived for permanent repairs at Galveston, Texas on 16 July and returned to service on 28 September.

Between 10.16 and 10.17 hours on 7 Jul, 1942, U-67 fired four torpedoes at three ships about 40 miles southwest of Southwest Pass, reported one hit and assumed that one tanker sank at 10.45 hours. The Paul H. Harwood (Master George Rasmussen) was hit by one torpedo while steaming at 12 knots in a small convoy of four ships being escorted by one destroyer. The torpedo struck on the port side abaft amidships at the #6 tank and blew a hole 15 feet by 12 feet into the hull, causing the flooding of tanks #5, #6 and #7. The tanker was stabilized by counterflooding the forward tanks and continued on her course at 10 knots into Southwest Pass to Burwood, Louisiana. She anchored at Pilottown and then proceeded to New Orleans. None of the eight officers, 32 crewmen and 16 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 4in, one 3in and four 20mm guns) reported an injury. The tanker arrived for permanent repairs at Galveston, Texas on 16 July and returned to service on 28 September.

Going out of Guiria and through Boca de Sierpo the water was choppy and rough.  Finally arrived in Aruba on the 6th and it was rather smoky due to the refineries working at full capacity.  The view of the houses from the harbor was just a flash of brightly colored houses – they certainly do go for loud colors.  The boat was being unloaded on the 6th and 7th and in the meantime, Lenert, LeBlanc, Hewes, McClendon, Willis and I went out to do our shopping.  Bought quite a few interesting articles for folks at home.  Imagine that all will be appreciated. Left Aruba at about 6 p.m. on the 8th and headed directly for the Windward Passage.  Stood by the rail to enjoy the night view of Aruba. The refinery plant lights vent flares and smoke make the night scene of the island rather an interesting one.

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On the 9th we were well in the Caribbean Ocean and I was out at the bow looking into sea as we rode safely, rode above the deep-seated coral beds.  It was around the vicinity of the Island of Haiti (8 a.m) that I saw three octopi, numerous orchid-colored jelly-fish, flying fish, squids, and a giant sea eel. Saw the Island of Cuba about 5 p.m. but it was about twilight and nothing could be seen.  Saw the lights of a number of tankers, freighters and a cruiser. On the 10th at 5 a.m. we were off to the west of Crooked Island.  Saw the usual amount of jelly-fish and flying fish. At 3 p.m. we were off the west coast of the Island of San Salvador, and about 10 p.m. we were about due east of the southern tip of Florida.

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The Italia Società di Navigazione a Vapore was founded in Genoa in 1899 to operate services between Italy and South America. Although registered in Italy, the company was controlled by Hamburg America Line. In 1906 Hamburg America sold their share of the company to Navigazione Generale Italiana and sailings to New York and Philadelphia started in 1908. In 1917 Italia was absorbed into the new company Transoceanica Società Italiana di Navigazione.

March ll th. The sea was rough all day.  We had a heavy wind-blown sea. The waves washed over the lower decks; the wind whistled and lightning snapped quite often.  We did not however get the heavy part of the storm.  At times the waves splashed well over the bow of the tanker. The ship rolled as much as 16 degrees.  Some of the passengers did not feel so good and remained in their rooms.  Periodically the ship’s whistle blasted its warning since visibility was not very good.  The sea was heavy all night. Between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. the sea was at its worst.

Built by Cantieri Riuniti dell'Adriatico, Monfalcone in 1931 for Lloyd Sabaudo, she was a 48,502 gross ton ship, overall length 814.6ft x beam 96.1ft, two funnels, two masts, four screws and a speed of 27 knots. There was accommodation for 360-1st, 375-special, 400-tourist and 922-3rd class passengers. Launched on 28/10/1931, she was transferred to Italia Line (which was an amalgamation of three former independent lines) in January 1932. She was one of the first ships to be fitted with gyro-stabilizers which, it was claimed, maximized her rolling to three degrees. She was sunk in shallow water at Venice by British bombers on 11/9/1943

Built by Cantieri Riuniti dell’Adriatico, Monfalcone in 1931 for Lloyd Sabaudo, she was a 48,502 gross ton ship, overall length 814.6ft x beam 96.1ft, two funnels, two masts, four screws and a speed of 27 knots. There was accommodation for 360-1st, 375-special, 400-tourist and 922-3rd class passengers. Launched on 28/10/1931, she was transferred to Italia Line (which was an amalgamation of three former independent lines) in January 1932. She was one of the first ships to be fitted with gyro-stabilizers which, it was claimed, maximized her rolling to three degrees. She was sunk in shallow water at Venice by British bombers on 11/9/1943

March 12th: The sea was heavy all day, and a cold wind blew from the northwest.  Remained in our cabins all day as the ship rolled as high as 17 1/2 degrees; our ship had to slow down to 3 1/2 knots per hour and we were pitching badly.  About 4 p.m. the CONTE DI SAVOIA liner passed us on the east side and it was literally plowing thru the heavy seas.
March 13th and 14th the sea had quieted down somewhat but the air was rather chilly.

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March 15th: Sighted the Jersey coast, saw the air maneuvers of an Army blimp from Lakehurst.  Gradually pulled into the New York Harbor and thence to Bayonne, N. J. where we remained overnight.

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March 16th: Went thru the customs inspections.  Met Mary and Dell at the pier.  Then went to Hotel Taft where reservations were made for me. Straightened up business, bought a new  Plymouth 2-door De Luxe sedan and headed for Amsterdam.

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