Friday, July 11, 2008
Cunard vs. White Star Line
For years, the Cunard and White Star line have gone head-to-head. The Cunard Line was started by Samuel Cunard and after his first ship, he built more and more putting others out of business. The White Star Line was started by Pinkerton and Trelfall and the company was given to many other business-men including J.P. Morgan. The two companies were trying to make their ships bigger, faster, and more luxurious ships. At one point, Cunard built the Lusitania and Maurentania which became the fastest (setting a record time across the Atlantic Ocean), largest, and most luxurious ships ever. That fame and glory lasted only two years when the White Star Line built three ships far bigger and more luxurious than the Lusitania and Maurentania. The three ship's names were the Olympic, TITANIC, and Gigantic. The Olympic was built and became world-famous. The TITANIC was built but as you know, she sank on her maiden voyage. The White Star Line renamed it's final sister Britannic. The Britannic was being constructed and the paneling was just beginning to be installed when his majesty's royal navy pressed the ship into military service. The Britannic was made a hospital ship. On it's 6th voyage, the Britannic struck a mine and sank. The White Star Line lost it's credibility and soon, the Cunard Line won. The White Star Line became Cunard-White Star Line. The Olympic remained in the fleet and was retired and scrapped. The Cunard-White Star Line went out of business and later, Cunard was bought out by the Carnival Line which currently owns all of the ship companies. There remains today, one White Star Line ship as far as we know.