Cunard Line - company profile


cunard logo 150The traditional British shipping company looks back in 2015 Cunard line looks back on 175 years of eventful company history. The Canadian businessman who was born in Halifax / Nova Scotia in 1787 gave the impetus to found the shipping company Samuel Cunard. Together with several financially strong partners, he founded the British & North American Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, which was colloquially called the "Cunard Line".

The industrial revolution in England, which changed social and economic conditions at the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century, required a functioning postal system at home and abroad. The foundation of the company was based on a contract concluded with the British Admiralty for the carriage of mail overseas. The contract required the company to make 14-day trips in summer and 4-week trips in winter between Liverpool in England and Halifax and Québec in Canada. This service cost the Krone 81.000 pounds a year.

Queen Victoria in the port of Istanbul

Queen Victoria in the port of Istanbul


The postal service began symbolically in 1840 with the steamship Britannia. This was a 63-meter-long and 10-meter-wide paddle wheel steamer that could carry a maximum of 115 passengers in addition to mail. The journey to the west took 13 days and 6 hours. In an easterly direction, the ship only needed 11 days and 3 hours due to the wind and current conditions.

Elevation of the Britannia in the port of Halifax / Nova Scotia

Elevation of the Britannia in the port of Halifax / Nova Scotia


In the same year the structurally identical ones were used as further ships of the company Acadia, Caledonia and Columbia put into service. Further new buildings were commissioned by 1850. In the course of the company's 175-year history, the company has procured more than 180 ships.

Cunard Building in Liverpool

Cunard Building in Liverpool


Driven by the success of the Cunard Line, serious competitors quickly emerged. The consequence of this was that at that time global freight and passenger shipping with steamships developed rapidly.

Incidentally, the competing shipping companies were constantly trying to win the “Blue Ribbon” for the fastest Atlantic crossing. At first it was not a problem for the Cunard Line to secure the “Blue Ribbon”. In the course of time, however, Cunard's steamers lost the "Blue Ribbon" because the steel ships of the competitors were technically superior to the wooden Cunard ships. To make matters worse, the company's economic situation worsened as subsidies for the parcel service were cut to just £ 70.000 a year.

Queen Mary 2 in Southampton at the Queen Elizabeth II Terminal

Queen Mary 2 in Southampton at the Queen Elizabeth II Terminal


To strengthen the capital base, the Cunard Steamship Company Ltd. was founded in 1877. founded in the legal form of a stock corporation. Later, between 1911 and 1916, the company, which had since recovered, took over several British shipping companies. The acquisitions made Cunard one of the world's largest shipping companies. The world economic crisis at the beginning of the 1930s brought another setback. At that time the company was forced to work with the White Star Line Cunard White StarLtd. to merge. After the pooling and injection of fresh capital, the project was 80.774 GRT and 310 meters long Rms queen mary completed. She followed with the RMSQueen Elizabeth an even bigger ship. Both ships were used successfully for a while after the Second World War.

Queen Mary 2 in Brooklyn / NY Harbor

Queen Mary 2 in Brooklyn / NY Harbor


The advent of transatlantic air traffic, however, sealed the end of passenger and mail traffic by ship. The shipping company could not continue to exist in its old form. It was smashed. Remnants of the company were in 1997 by the Carnival Corporation accepted. The company is managed as a premium brand under the aegis of Carnival. It relies on large ships that represent the British way of life. In detail these are:

Queen Mary 2

Baptism: January 8, 2004
Tonnage: 148.527 GT
Length:                      345 meters
Number of cabins: 1.310


Queen Victoria

Baptism: December 10, 2007
Tonnage: 90.000 GT
Length:                      294 meters
Number of cabins: 995

 

Queen Elizabeth

Baptism: October 11, 2010
Tonnage: 90.900 GT
Length:                      294 meters
Number of cabins: 1.045

 

Queen Mary 2 is the flagship and at the same time the oldest and most representative ship in the fleet. It provides regular liner services across the Atlantic to the west and east. The shipping company's program also includes world trips with all ships and selected cruises in Europe, North and South America and the Caribbean.

Halifax - Sir Samuel Cunard - son of the city

Halifax - Sir Samuel Cunard - son of the city


For his services to Great Britain, Samuel Cunard was named by Queen Victoria in 1859 1st Baronet Cunard raised to the nobility. In Halifax Harbor, visitors are greeted by a statue of the city's great son and benefactor. An elevation of the Britannia can also be seen there. On board the Queen Mary 2, the portrait of the company founder is allowed in Sir Samuel's Café be admired.

Queen Mary 2 - Sir Samuel's likeness on board Queen Mary II

Queen Mary 2 - Sir Samuel's likeness on board Queen Mary II

(Karl Beyer) July 2015


 

 

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