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RMS Mauretania (1906) - History, Accommodations, & Ephemera Collection

The RMS Mauretania circa 1910.

The RMS Mauretania circa 1910. Detroit Publishing Company No. 022638. Library of Congress 2016806527. GGA Image ID # 1ba9129339

No recent event in the shipping world has excited nearly so much general interest as the completion and entry upon the Atlantic service of the two new express Cunarders, the Lusitania and Mauretania.

The performances of both vessels have demonstrated that Britain possesses two ships capable of beating all Atlantic records in them but that their superiority in speed is so great that it is not likely to be challenged for many years to come. This success is a crowning tribute to the enterprise which has distinguished the Cunard Line from its inception sixty-seven years ago to the present time.

The Mauretania and her Sister Ship Lusitania are the outcomes of an agreement made between the British Government and the Cunard Steamship Company. They contracted to produce two steamships " capable of maintaining a minimum average ocean speed of 24 to 25 knots an hour in moderate weather."

Table I: Trial Speed Runs for the New Cunard Liner Mauretania.

Table I: Trial Speed Runs for the New Cunard Liner Mauretania. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bae59cb44

24 Facts About the RMS Mauretania (1906)

  1. Built by: Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Ltd., Wallsend-on-Tyne, Newcastle, England.
  2. Designer: Leonard Peskett
  3. Owner: The Cunard Steamship Company, Limited.
  4. Tonnage: 30,696
  5. Funnels: Two masts and four funnels
  6. Dimensions: 762' long x 88' wide (790' Overall Length).
  7. Port of Registry: Liverpool (Southampton after 1921)
  8. Propulsion: Quadruple-screw, 26 knots. Four steam turbines.
  9. Launched: September 20, 1906
  10. Office Registry Number: 124093
  11. Passengers: 563 first-class, 464 second-class, 1,138 third-class.
  12. Maiden voyage: Liverpool-New York, November 16, 1907.
  13. Speed Records: Held the trans-Atlantic speed record, along with her sister ship for several years.
  14. Eastbound Crossing Speed Record: In June 1909, she made the eastward crossing in 4 days, 17 hours, and 21 minutes.
  15. Horsepower: Rated at 68,000 shaft horsepower. (90,000 horsepower after conversion to oil) Equipped with 23 double and two single-ended boilers working at 200 lb. pressure.
  16. Westbound Crossing: In September 1928, she made the Cherbourg to Ambrose Light crossing in 5 days, 2 hours, and 34 minutes, a remarkable feat for a twenty-two-year-old liner, especially as she was at the time equipped with her original "Parson's" steam turbines.
  17. Fate: The grand old ship was finally broken up by shipbreakers at Rosyth in July 1935, thus ending the career of one of the most famous and successful Atlantic liners.
  18. World's Largest Ship: She was the world's largest ship until the White Star Line RMS Olympic launch in 1910.
  19. Sister ship: Lusitania.
  20. Fuel: Coal. It was converted to Burn Oil in 1921 at Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Ltd.
  21. Nicknames: "Maury" and "Grand Old Lady of the Atlantic."
  22. Blue Riband Speed Records: Westbound Record 1909-1929; Eastbound Record 1907-1929
  23. Grand Old Lady: She held the Blue Riband of the Atlantic for 22 years, and in August 1929, when she was 22 years old, she made the fastest transatlantic passage of her career, crossing from New York to Plymouth at an average speed of 27.22 knots.
  24. Pleasure Cruising: Hull Painted White During Pleasure Cruising Period 1933.

Plate C:- Cross-Section of the Cunard Liner RMS "Mauretania."

Plate C:- Cross-Section of the Cunard Liner RMS "Mauretania." Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb53551a7 -- Click to View Larger Image

History & Background of RMS Mauretania

The Life of R.M.S. Mauretania by Blue Star Line, Graphics by Alex Beaut, 6 March 2020. YouTube Video Retrieved 2022-05-15.

Design and construction

Workmen Leaving the Mauretania at Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Ltd., Wallsend-on-Tyne, Newcastle, England Shipbuilding Yard.

Workers Leaving the Mauretania at Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Ltd., Wallsend-on-Tyne, Newcastle, England Shipbuilding Yard. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1baba439cc

The conditions laid down in the agreement entered into in 1903 between the British Government and the Cunard Company required the construction of two steamships "capable of maintaining during a voyage across the Atlantic a minimum average speed of from 24 to 25 knots (say, 27 to 29 statute miles) per hour in moderate weather." This stipulation, coupled with the large amount of passenger accommodation aimed at, the stringent requirements of the British Admiralty, and the determination of the owners to make the vessels much more robust than any other fast Atlantic vessel afloat, and to introduce every known contrivance for the safety and comfort of the passengers, compelled the designers to adopt unprecedented dimensions.

Observation Tower or Bridge of the RMS Mauretania.

Observation Tower or Bridge of the RMS Mauretania. The Brain of the Ship. The Navigating Bridge Shows the Various Control Devices and Wheel-House. All the Stone-Lloyd Watertight Doors Are Closed from This Point Simultaneously by the Pressure of a Lever. The Master, Mate and Pilot, June 1908. GGA Image ID # 1bb47814ff

When one reads about these brilliant achievements of the Mauretania or sees her driving along at full speed, one never gives a thought to the infinitely laborious experiments and calculations involved before even her keel was laid. A long list of men famous for their association with marine engineering problems—such experts as Sir William White, Sir E. J. Reed, the Honorable Sir Charles A. Parsons, Dr. Brum, Messrs. George B. Hunter, W. Johns, McQuorn Rankine, W., and R. E. Froude, together with the expert staff of the builders—contributed to her design. Many varied factors must be considered in planning a special type of vessel. There are questions of stability—one of the vital problems of the ship—speed, economy, and steadiness when traveling at full speed, not only in smooth but also in rough weather, which has to be threshed out thoroughly.

Plate LXVII Fig. 45:- Quadruple-Screw Turbine-Driven Cunard Liner Mauretania Ready to Launch.

Plate LXVII Fig. 45:- Quadruple-Screw Turbine-Driven Cunard Liner Mauretania Ready to Launch. The Striking Illustration above Shows the Stern of the Mauretania Out of the Water, the Photograph Having Been Taken. At the Same Time, the Vessel Was Being Built at Wallsend-On-Tyne by Messrs. Swan, Hunter, and Wigham Richardson. It Will Be Noticed That There Are Two Propellers on either Side of the Rudder. The Two Outermost Are Driven by the High-Pressure and the inside Two by the Low-Pressure Turbines. The Two Inner Propellers Are Also Used for Going Astern, and since the Turbine Can Only Turn In One Direction, These Two Are Each Fitted with a High-Pressure Turbine. When the Ship Is Steaming Ahead, These Astern Turbines Revolve Idly. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb4db0801

Plate LXX Fig. 47:- The Mauretania in the Fitting-Out Berth at the Wallsend Shipyard.

Plate LXX Fig. 47:- The Mauretania in the Fitting-Out Berth at the Wallsend Shipyard. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb4fd0247

For instance, to give an idea of the wind forces and their influences on speed, power, etc., it was calculated that to enable the Mauretania to maintain a speed of 25 knots per hour against a headwind blowing at an equal velocity, 12 percent more power would be required than to uphold the same speed in calm weather. On the other hand, with the following wind of identical velocity, the liner would be able to notch the 25 knots per hour with about 4 percent less power than in calm weather.

It is doubtful whether the construction of any vessel in the merchant marine history has ever been attended by such exhaustive preliminary work to reduce the element of chance to its most infinitesimal proportions.

The "Mauretania" Leaves the Tyne for the Mersey.

The "Mauretania" Leaves the Tyne for the Mersey. The New Cunarder, Mauretania, Which Is the Sister Ship of the Record-Breaking Lusitania, Left the Tyne on Monday for Liverpool with 500 Guests, Including Lord Brassey on Board. She Is a Magnificent Vessel. The Sphere, 26 October 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb3d0e08d

Passenger Accommodations

The passenger accommodation of the Mauretania, when its spaciousness and beauty of decoration are taken into account, certainly justify the use of the somewhat extravagant term "a floating palace." It is claimed that the vessel offers 50 percent more light and air space and deck promenade per passenger than any other liner afloat except for the Lusitania.

Plate LXXIII Fig. 65:- First Class Dining Saloons, Upper and Lower Levels Showing Dome on the RMS Mauretania.

Plate LXXIII Fig. 65:- First Class Dining Saloons, Upper and Lower Levels Showing Dome on the RMS Mauretania. Engineering Magazine, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bac2f0011

Saloon Accommodation

  • Main Saloon Dining Room. Situated amidships on "D" Deck.
  • Upper Dining Saloon. On "C" Deck," approached from the main staircase.
  • Lounge and Music Room. Amidships On "A" Deck with entrance from promenade deck, elevators, or main staircase.
  • Writing Room and Library. Forward of the lounge on "A" Deck with entrance from promenade deck, elevators, or main staircase.
  • Smoking Room. This is situated astern of the lounge on "A" Deck with entrance from the lounge and can also be entered either from the promenade decks or by staircase.
  • Verandah Café. Astern of the Smoking Room, on "A" Deck.
  • Staterooms. Situated on Boat, "A," "B," "D," and "E" Decks.
  • En Suite Rooms. Regal and Parlor Suites. These rooms are situated on both sides of " A " and " B " Decks.
  • Children's Room. On "C" Deck, just forward of the upper dining saloon.
  • Purser's Bureau. Situated off the reception room on "B" Deck. Here passengers should deposit valuables, etc., for safekeeping. The Company is not responsible for theft if valuables or money are kept in the staterooms. They should be placed in the Purser's safe, and a receipt obtained on the Company's form. However, the Company cannot accept any responsibility for loss or damage, but passengers can protect themselves with insurance.
  • Bank. For money exchange, etc., on " A " Deck.
  • Chief Steward's Office. Adjacent to the main dining saloon on " C " Deck.
  • Barber's Shop. On "B" Deck on starboard or right-hand side, astern of saloon accommodation. Open from 8:00 am.

Cabin Class Passenger Accommodations on the RMS Mauretania.

Cabin Class Passenger Accommodations on the RMS Mauretania. Cunard Line Passenger Guide - Mauretania, 1921. GGA Image ID # 1bb5d491b1

First Class Upper Dining Saloon and Dome on the Mauretania.

First Class Upper Dining Saloon and Dome on the Mauretania. The Decorations Are Carried Out in Carved Oak, in the Style of François Premier. One of the Charms of This Style Is That No Piece of Carving Is a Replica of Its Neighbors. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bac50ae57

Another View of the First Class Upper Dining Saloon on the RMS Mauretania.

Another View of the First-Class Upper Dining Saloon on the RMS Mauretania. Some of the Most Delicate Work Is Shown upon the Arched Bulkheads, Which Run at Right Angles to the Ship's Sides. The Designer Has Aimed to Keep the Larger and Lower Room Richer in Carving, Leading Up to a Simpler Treatment in the Upper Dining Saloon and Terminating with the Crowning Feature of the Lofty Groined Dome. In the Upper Saloon, Parties of 6 Persons Can Be Seated at Each Table. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bac7a5d68

The accommodation for first-class passengers placed amidships extends over five decks--the main, upper, shelter, promenade, and boat decks. Access from one deck to another is obtained utilizing the grand and other staircases and two separate electric passenger elevators, traveling from the main to the boat deck.

The more significant part of the accommodation for passengers, officers, and crew, has been carried out by the shipbuilders in their workshops. This includes all the second-class public rooms, the first-class corridors, and the majority of the first-class staterooms.

Subcontractors have done the following work. The first-class lounge and library by Messrs. Ch. Mellier and Co., London; the first-class dining- rooms, smoking room, the grand entrances, 54 unique staterooms, and the Regal Suites by Messrs. Turner, Lord, and Co., London; the children's room and 16 special staterooms by Messrs. Robson and Sons, Newcastle-on-Tyne.

A Bay in the First Class Lounge on the RMS Mauretania.

A Bay in the First Class Lounge on the RMS Mauretania. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bac7bb9e8

Another View of the First Class Lounge on the RMS Mauretania.

Another View of the First-Class Lounge on the RMS Mauretania, 1907. Altogether, the Lounge Gives a Beautiful Impression of Quiet Grandeur, with Its Panels of Beautifully Grained Mahogany, Dully Polished a Rich Brown, Each Lit by Its Surrounding Molding of Gold, and Relieved by Slender Pilasters of Fleur de Pêcher Marble of a Lilac Hue, with Caps and Plinths of Somber Ormolu. The Mantelpiece, of the Same Materials, is a Work of Art and Accentuates the Feeling That One Is in Some Grand Palace of a past Age. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bacc374df

First Class Library of the RMS Mauretania Looking Across the Ship, 1907.

First Class Library of the RMS Mauretania Looking Across the Ship, 1907. The Lounge and the Library Have Been Decorated So That upon Entering Them, One Is Transported in a Moment from the Cold Realities of a Modern Steamship to the Exquisite Taste of a French Salon of the Eighteenth Century. GGA Image ID # 1bb3ceff47

First Class Library on the Mauretania Showing Bookcases, 1907.

First Class Library on the Mauretania Showing Bookcases, 1907. The Library Extends across the Deckhouse, Being 33 Ft. Long by 56 Ft. The Deckhouse Walls are Bowed Out to Form Bay Windows, Which Is an Improvement upon the Ordinary Flat Walls Characteristic of Ships. GGA Image ID # 1bb3978a0d

First Class Smoking Room, Looking Forward on the Mauretania. The Shipbuilder, November 1907.

First Class Smoking Room, Looking Forward on the Mauretania. The Smoking Room Opens Aft from the Grand Entrance on the Promenade Deck and Is Decorated Following the Ideas of the Late Georgian Period. The Upholstering of the Chairs and Sofa Seats Is in a Dark Blue Velvet-Pile Moquette. The Work Is Done in Mahogany, Inlaid with English Boxwood and Burr Mahogany. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bad1d6d21

First Class Smoking Room, Looking Aft on the Mauretania.

First Class Smoking Room, Looking Aft on the Mauretania. The Smoking Room Is Aft on the Boat Deck and May Be Reached from the Deck or the Entrance Hall through the Music Saloon or Lounge. The Smoking Room Is All That Such a Room Should Be; It Is 53 Ft. Long and 50 Ft. Wide. The Roof Has Formed a Dome, Making the Veranda Bright and Attractive. It Is Decorated in the Italian Style of the 16TH Century and Is Again Remarkable for Its Hugeness. An Interesting Feature Is the Series of Cozy Corners with Divans and Card- Tables on Each Side of the Room and Portioned off by Handsome Open Screens. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bad4298bb

The Verandah Café on the Boat Deck - RMS Mauretania.

The Verandah Café on the Boat Deck - RMS Mauretania. The Provision of a Verandah Café at the End of the First-Class Smoking Room on the Boat Deck Is One of the Many Delightful Innovations of the Mauretania. Here Passengers May Sit and Sip Their Coffee in the Open Air, Perfectly Protected from the Weather. Evergreens Have Been Trained along the Glazed Roof, Giving the Passenger an Impression of Shore Comforts. The Furniture in the Verandah Café Has Been Supplied by Mr. J. P White of the Pyghtle Works, Bedford. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bad81155f

The RMS Mauretania Observation Room.

The RMS Mauretania Observation Room. This Apartment Is Situated on the Promenade Deck at the Fore-End of the Deckhouse. It Commands an Uninterrupted View over the Vessel's Bow While Affording Complete Protection from the Weather. Passengers Can Thus See the Ship Forging Ahead without Being Exposed to the Force of the Wind Caused by the Incredible Speed at Which the Vessel Travels. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bad887a45

The First Class Children's Room on the RMS Mauretania.

The First-Class Children's Room on the RMS Mauretania. In the Children's Room., Which Is Situated on the Shelter Deck and Reached from the Grand Entrance, the Work Has Been Done in Mahogany, White Enameled. The Paneling on the Walls Is Decorated with Paintings by a Well-Known Artist Mr. J. K. Mitchell of New-Castle-On-Tyne, Illustrating the Nursery Rhyme "Four and Twenty Blackbirds." Dining Tables and Seats of Suitable Height for Little Passengers Are Provided; The Oversized Rocking Horse in the Center of the Room Will Undoubtedly Be Much in Demand. As in the Public Rooms Generally, the Windows in This Room Are Square and Not the Usual Circular Lights Used in Ship-Work. A Children's Lavatory and Pantry, Besides Rooms for Four Stewardesses and Two Matrons, Open off the Children's Room. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bada741bc

Regal Suite Parlor Drawing Room on the Mauretania.

Regal Suite Parlor Drawing Room on the Mauretania. In This Part of the Promenade Deck, There Are Two Regal Suites on Port and Starboard. The Regal Suites, of Which There Are Two, Contain a Drawing-Room, Dining-Room, Two Bedrooms, a Bathroom, Pantry, and a Private Corridor. The First Two Rooms Are Divided by Wide Sliding Doors, so That They May Be Used as One Room if So Desired. The Telephone Instruments Are Fitted in the Regal Suite and First-Class Staterooms, as Shown above on the Wall to Your Right, and in the Cabins of the Ship's Doctor, Purser, Chief Steward, and Bureau. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badae9387

Parlor Room in an En Suite Stateroom on B Deck on the Mauretania.

Parlor Room in an En Suite Stateroom on B Deck on the Mauretania. Along Each Side of the Main Deckhouse Are en Suite Rooms. On This Level, There Are Six Rooms with Single Berths, Sixty-Four with Two Berths, and Thirty-Two with Three Berths. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badbc9e6f

First Class Promenade on the Boat Deck, Looking Aft on the RMS Mauretania.

First Class Promenade on the Boat Deck, Looking Aft on the RMS Mauretania. The Boat Deck, Which Extends over the More Significant Part of the Ship's Center, Contains Some of the Finest en Suite Rooms. Abaft These, the First-Class Library, the Grand Entrance Hall, the First-Class Lounge and Music Room, and the First-Class Smoking Room Are at the Forward End. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bae57cc08

Second Class Accommodation

  • Dining Saloon. On the "D" Deck leading from the second-class main entrance.
  • Lounge. On "A" Deck situated to the stern of the steamer.
  • Drawing and Writing Room. On "B" Deck, main entrance.
  • Smoking Room. Also, on " B " Deck, but astern of the Drawing Room.
  • Barber's Shop. On "D" Deck off the right or starboard alleyway, astern of the dining saloon. Open from 8:00 am.
  • Staterooms. Situated on "C," " D," and "E" Decks.

The accommodation for second-class passengers -- like the first-class - extends from the main to the boat decks, but it is further aft. The second-class staterooms are all on the main, upper, and shelter decks, while the public rooms are on the promenade and boat decks.

An inspection of these apartments reveals that the second-class quarters are surpassed by the first-class accommodation in magnificence but not in comfort. In the general design and the treatment of detail, the same care has been exercised, and, indeed, a passenger coming on board for the first time might well be excused for mistaking the second-class public rooms and staterooms for the first class.

Only a few years ago, one would have considered such accommodation fully worthy of first-class passengers. If one feature more than another will make the Mauretania popular with Atlantic travelers, it will be the beauty and comfort of this accommodation section. In catering to this class of passengers, the Cunard Company may claim to lead the way among the great steamship lines plying between the Old and the New Worlds.

Second Class Dining Room on the RMS Mauretania.

Second Class Dining Room on the RMS Mauretania. The Second-Class Dining Saloon on the Upper Deck Opens Direct from the Grand Entrance and, as We Have Already Said, has a Length of 61 Ft., Is the Entire Width of the Ship, and Has a Height of 10 Ft. The Design Is Carried Out in Oak and Parquetry Flooring to Suit. Here Also, the Georgian Period Is Simulated in Furniture and Decoration. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badc1b250

Second Class Smoking Room on the Mauretania.

Second Class Smoking Room on the Mauretania. The Smoking Room Is Aft on the Boat Deck and May Be Reached from the Deck or the Entrance Hall through the Music Saloon or Lounge. The Smoking Room Is All That Such a Room Should Be; It Is 53 Ft. Long and 50 Ft. Wide. There Is Formed on the Roof a Dome, Which Makes the Veranda Bright and Attractive. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badc58e0e

Second Class Lounge on the RMS Mauretania.

Second Class Lounge on the RMS Mauretania. The Second-Class Lounge Is Accommodated in the Deckhouse Aft on This Level and Forms the Entrance to the Second-Class Quarters. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badf0a581

Second Class Drawing and Music Room on the Mauretania.

Second Class Drawing and Writing Room on the Mauretania. Note the Upright Piano on the Far Left of the Photo. The Drawing-Room for the Second-Class Passengers Is on the "B" Deck, Opening from the Grand Entrance Forward. Here a Pleasing Effect Is Produced by Adopting Maple with Gold Decorations. The General Style Is of the Louis Seize Period. GGA Image ID # 1bb2815d4c

Special Second Class Stateroom on the RMS Mauretania.

Special Second-Class Stateroom on the RMS Mauretania. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badf5379f

RMS Mauretania Second Class Promenade on the Boat Deck, Looking Forward.

RMS Mauretania Second Class Promenade on the Boat Deck, Looking Forward. There Is Splendid Promenading Space on This Boat Deck, and the Boats, if an Obstruction from Some Points of View, Affords Protection from Wind and Sun for Passengers on the Deck Chairs. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badffec7b

A well-known authority on steamship decoration who happened to enter the public rooms for the second-class passengers before reaching the saloons for the first-class passengers was surprised when told that he had not been in the principal rooms of the ship, so satisfactory did he consider these second-class rooms.

Third Class Accommodation

Third Class General Activity Room on the RMS Mauretania.

Third Class General Activity Room on the RMS Mauretania. GGA Image ID # 1bb2e48eb2

 

The builders' representatives strongly condemned using the word " Steerage" on the Mauretania. The correct designation appears to be " Third Class, " and the rooms provided for this section of the traveling public are in keeping with the general luxury and comfort of the shin.

The bathrooms and lavatories are superior to those provided by most hotels in the provinces, and the accommodation generally is relatively equal to what one finds in the first-class on some of the boats that ply between Venice and Trieste and other ports in the Adriatic Sea and the Mediterranean, as the writer can testify.

The public rooms for the third-class passengers are on the upper and shelter decks forward, and the sleeping accommodation is on the lower and main decks. Two main staircases extend from the main to the upper deck, one giving direct access to the dining saloon on the upper deck.

Table XI:- Summary of Passenger Accommodations on the RMS Mauretania.

Table XI:- Summary of Passenger Accommodations on the RMS Mauretania. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1baf3171bb -- Click to View Larger Image.

General Information

Baths, Lavatories, Etc. On each deck are Ladies and Gentlemen's Baths and Lavatories. Arrangements should be made with a steward in charge of the use of the bath.

Doctor. The Consulting Room is on the "C" Deck leading off the main entrance. The Doctor is authorized to make customary charges, subject to the commander's approval, for treating any Passengers at their request for any illness not originating on board. In cases of sickness contracted on board, no charge will be made, and medicine will be provided free.

Library. A Library of classic books under the control of the Library Steward is at the disposal of passengers during the voyage. Current reviews, magazines, etc., are also placed on board.

The Kitchen of the RMS Mauretania.

The Kitchen of the RMS Mauretania. The Galleys, Pantries, Bakery, Confectionery Room, and Knife-Cleaning Room for the First-Class Accommodation Extend for 130 Ft. The Entire Width of the Ship. Situated on the Upper Deck between the First and Second-Class Dining Saloons, Convenient Service Is Ensured to Both. Travelling Palaces: Luxury in Passenger Steamships, 1913. GGA Image ID # 1bb0d946aa

The Galleys. The galleys, pantries, bakery, confectionery room, and knife-cleaning room for the first-class accommodation extend for 130 feet, the entire width of the ship. It is claimed that they form the most extensive kitchen afloat. Situated on the upper deck between the first and second-class dining saloons, convenient service is ensured to both.

Electricity plays a large part in the culinary operations onboard the vessel. The main cooking range, heated by a coal fire, is 24 feet long by 8 ft. wide. In addition, there are four large steam boilers, twelve steam ovens, three large electric grills, and various roasters driven by electric motors. The pantries are fitted with carving tables, bain maries, and electric plate-washers.

A View of a Kitchen on the RMS Mauretania.

A View of a Kitchen on the RMS Mauretania. GGA Image ID # 1bb1421220

There are numerous ovens in the baker's shop and an electrically driven dough -mixer. The confectionery room is fitted with a long marble lopper table, an ice cream machine, etc.

Four electrically driven knife-cleaning devices are provided in the room specially set apart for this operation. Lifts are arranged from the galley to the engineers' and officers' mess rooms on the deck above and below the storerooms.

Another View of a Kitchen on the RMS Mauretania.

Another View of a Kitchen on the RMS Mauretania. GGA Image ID # 1bb17bc52b

Baths and Lavatories. The bathrooms and lavatories on board the Mauretania are attractive given their great size and the variety of marble introduced in their construction. The first-class baths are Vit enamel, with a white veined marble base. All are fitted with a shower and spray. The needle baths, of which there is a good number, are in Blomp P. Marble is provided with shower, spray, and "wave" fittings.

First and Second Class Toilet on the RMS Mauretania.

First and Second-Class Toilet on the RMS Mauretania. The Syren and Shipping, 23 October 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb6688075

Ventilation. Air ducts ventilated all the public rooms and staterooms for first, second, and third-class passengers. The air is directed into each compartment utilizing electrically driven centrifugal fans. Passengers may regulate the flow into each cabin. The atmosphere is suitably heated in cold weather before being passed into the same series of pipes, etc.

Concerning the lavatories, galleys, etc., the air is sucked from these spaces by electrically driven fans. The ventilation system may entirely change the atmosphere throughout the ship at 10 minutes. Thus, one will observe that the ventilation system can efficiently ventilate the vessel should the side ports be closed through the stress of weather.

Water Supply

In the olden days, the water intended for domestic purposes had to be carried aboard in barrels or stored in tanks, somewhat after the practice with railway trains. Such a method, however, would be rather impracticable nowadays, when some 3000 passengers and crew demand attention, because, based on only 30 gallons per day per passenger, some 500,000 gallons of freshwater represent a deadweight of over 2000 tons for a six days' voyage, would need to be stowed somewhere or other onboard the ship. Moreover, fresh, or distilled, water is required for the boilers for steam, and obviously, it is quite impossible to carry a reserve on board for all these purposes. The engineer has devised ways and means of drawing all requirements in these directions from the ocean itself by evaporating and distilling machines so that the modern liner carries complete waterworks. This installation upon the Mauretania can supply no fewer than 1,8 000 gallons of drinking water and 1,5 000 gallons of water for washing and bath purposes during the 24 hours so that so long as engineers can keep the pumps and plant going, there is no danger of the ship running short of this essential commodity.

Telephone System

Telephone Switchboard on the Mauretania.

Telephone Switchboard on the Mauretania. The Switchboard and Exchange Apparatus Is Contained in a Room Amidships Set Apart for the Purpose. The Central Battery System Is Employed, and the Power Panel Is Placed at the Top of the Switchboard, as Shown in the Illustration. On the Mauretania, There Are at Present 89 Stations and 10 Exchange Lines Connected to a Switchboard with a Capacity of 200 Stations and 20 Exchange Lines. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb3470264

Table Showing the Arrangement of the Decks on the RMS Mauretania, 1907.

Table Showing the Arrangement of the Decks on the RMS Mauretania, 1907. There Are Nine Decks in the Mauretania, Seven Entirely above the Load Water-Line. The Eighth, the Orlop Deck, Is Wholly Given to Machinery, except for the Forward Holds, Where Insulated Space Is Provided with the Carriage of Supplies for the Cuisine Department and Perishable Cargo. The Other Decks, Which Are, as Far as Possible, Given Up to the Accommodation of Passengers, Are Designated by Letters from the Boat Deck Downwards. GGA Image ID # 1bb32f78de -- Click to View Larger Image.

History of service

Maiden Voyage. On Tuesday afternoon, the Mauretania's Maiden Voyage, The Cunard liner Mauretania left the Tyne. It commenced what may be regarded as her maiden voyage, the run-around to Liverpool, where she is to be docked, cleaned and painted before the official trials being run. The course to be shaped is round the North of Scotland and possibly a circuit around Ireland if the weather is favorable, but the captain will make no high-speed tests. The vessel is due in Liverpool on Thursday evening and was clear of the Tyne pier heads at 3.45 Tuesday afternoon so that there was ample time for the extended cruise. The guests number about 450, and among them are Lord and Lady Inverclyde, Lord Brassey, Mr. Arnold Morley, Sir Isambard and Lady Owen, Sir Walter and Lady Runciman, Colonel and Mrs. Swan, Major-General Sterling Sir J. Troubridge, Sir W. Arbuckle, Sir F. D. Blake, Mr. and Mrs. T. H. Bainbridge, Sir F. and Miss Hopwood, Sir W. H. White, the Hon. C. H. Wellesley Wilson and Lady Marjorie Wilson, Mr. C. T. Leyland, Sir W. B., and Lady Forwood, Mr. G. B. Hunter, and Mr. Wigham Richardson.

Cunard's Mauretania and Lusitania were each certified to carry 2,200 passengers and a crew of 900, a total of 3,100 souls. They were far better-designed vessels than the White Star Line Olympic and the Titanic. (Tramps and Ladies, 1959)

The White Star Line Olympic failed in taking the Blue Riband for speed from the Mauretania. On her maiden voyage, she attained an average speed of 21.17 knots, but the Mauretania held the Blue Riband in 1909 with a speed of 25.89 knots and in 1910 with 26.06 knots, setting a record that stood for twenty years after that. (Tramps and Ladies, 1959)

The Mauretania, built in 1907, was, and perhaps remains, the most illustrious steamship ever constructed. Her most recent blue-ribbon voyage had been made in 1924 at an average speed of 26.25 knots. By 1929 many vessels had surpassed the Mauretania in size. Still, none had developed the ratio of power to tonnage necessary to equal this sistership of the ill-fated Lusitania in speed. (Lives of the Liners, 1947)

Mauretania Interior Overview

The Mauretania has been described as the costliest decorated vessel afloat. But it is British in style, treatment, and artistry, solid and durable so that it fulfills national traditions. On the other hand, it is stated that the British firms do not offer very much material encouragement to our artists. In other words, while being works of art, the mural paintings are not specimens of famous living painters. This is undoubtedly true because an atmosphere of anonymity pervades the whole decorative scheme, but it is a moot point whether the traveler does not benefit. He is spared "artistic atrocities," usually the fruits of fame. (Talbot, Steamship Conquest of the World, 1912)

WWI Involvement

The Mauretania in Dazzle Camouflage During World War I, In New York Harbor, 2 December 1918.

The Mauretania in Dazzle Camouflage During World War I, In New York Harbor, 2 December 1918. Baines News Service. Library of Congress # 2014708123. GGA Image ID # 1baf997116

Initially intended for employment as an armed cruiser, we find the Mauretania converted into a troopship in 1915 and a Hospital Ship in 1916. In 1917, she again became a Transport fitted with 6-inch guns. In the Spring of 1918, the "Mauretania" brought 33,000 American soldiers to Europe.

In all these capacities, she did magnificent work, not without imminent risk of destruction, and it was only by the brilliant seamanship of Commander Dow, one of the Cunard Company's oldest and most trusted skippers, that she escaped being sunk while plying between England and Mudros, in her role of Troopship.

Attacked by a submarine, Commander Dow noticed the wake of the approaching torpedo on his starboard bow and immediately ordered the helm to be flung hard; apart, the torpedo was missed by not more than 5 feet, the Mauretania's great speed fortunately after that placing her beyond the range of the enemy.

Key voyages of RMS Mauretania

Rescue of Ovidia

The Cunarder Mauretania has been presented with a golden plaque by the Swedish Navy League in gratitude for the vessel's rescue of twenty-eight persons from the Swedish freighter Ovidia which sank about 400 miles off Cape Race. On 19 November 1930, Mauretania rescued 28 people and the ship's cat of the Swedish cargo ship Ovidia which foundered in the Atlantic Ocean 400 nautical miles (740 km; 460 mi) southeast of Cape Race, Newfoundland.

Rescue of Fall River

Captain John Pritchard, Commander of the RMS Mauretania, Standing on the Bridge.

Captain John Pritchard, Commander of the RMS Mauretania, Standing on the Bridge. The Bridge Is a Spacious Place in Keeping with the Rest of the Mauretania. The Indicator Board, Which Lights up When the Water-Tight Doors Close, Is Particularly Interesting. The Sphere, 2 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bafab2ff2

The British Board of Trade has received through the Foreign Office a binocular glass for Captain John Pritchard, master of the British steamer Mauretania, of Liverpool, awarded him by the President of the United States, in recognition of saving life from a shipwrecked American schooner barge the Fall River, last year. In making the presentation, the chairman, Captain J. Guffey, V. D., explained to the local Marine Board at Liverpool that the Fall River left Philadelphia on Tuesday, January 21, 1908.

She and two other barges laden with coal were in tow of the tug Concord, bound for Fall River. The weather at the outset was fine, and all went well until Thursday. The draw and its heavy tows had arrived off Point Judith, close to their port, when a storm suddenly arose from the northeast, with thick snow showers.

The weather became so bad that the tug was obliged to put back with its charges and run for shelter in Long Island Sound, but the snow fell faster and thicker as the night advanced. They lost sight of land, and on the following day, it was decided to run before the storm in a southwesterly direction.

That (Friday) evening all the tow went adrift, and the shipping of a heavy sea damaged the pumping gear and carried away the rudder of the Fall River so that she became helpless and drifted about at the mercy of wind and sea. On Saturday, the crew decided to abandon their vessel and trusted themselves to the frail dory.

No sooner had they put their resolve into execution than the barge foundered. Then commenced a struggle with the elements. The men pulled with all their might towards land but were repeatedly driven back. One steamer, bound eastward, passed them during the morning. However, in the afternoon, they rejoiced to find a large steamship "coming along like an express train."

The fast-traveling vessel soon proved to be the Mauretania. The watch officers descried the little dory, and Captain Pritchard immediately bore down towards the boat. Ropes were thrown to the dory, which was then hauled alongside as far as could be done with safety, and the distressed seamen were helped aboard the liner.

The rescue was effected amid the cheers of hundreds of passengers and the crew. The captain of the Fall River was loud in his praise of the skill shown by Captain Pritchard in bringing his great liner quickly into a position which enabled him to effect so rapid a rescue, notwithstanding that at the time, the wind was blowing strongly, and the sea was rough.

The chairman went on to say that Captain Pritchard added to the services he had already rendered by utilizing the Marconi telegraph equipment on his ship to communicate with the owners of the wrecked vessel and the friends of the crew, who were thus promptly acquainted with the rescue of the men.

Much domestic suffering was avoided by this act of kindness by Captain Pritchard. Colonel Goffey concluded by handing a binocular glass to Captain Pritchard and remarking that it gave him great pleasure to be the medium selected for making such a presentation on behalf of the President of the United States.

 

Captain Pritchard, who was greeted with applause, acknowledged the presentation in a few words, assuring his hearers that he had done nothing but his duty, " the same as any other British captain would have done." (The Master, Mate and Pilot, May 1909: 494)

One Year of Voyages for the Mauretania

In one season, the Mauretania completed 27 Consecutive trips across the Atlantic—13 1/2 round trip voyages —reeling off no less than 77,500 knots—89,242 miles—at an average speed of 25 1/2 knots, or 29.36 miles per hour. Mauretania's record is unprecedented in the whole history of the steamship.

To give an idea of the wind forces and their influences on speed, power, etc., designers calculated that to enable the Mauretania to maintain a speed of 25 knots per hour against a headwind blowing at an equal velocity, 12 percent, more power would be required than to uphold the same speed in calm weather. On the other hand, with the following wind of identical velocity, the liner would be able to notch the 25 knots per hour with about 4 percent less power than in calm weather.

-- Steamship Conquest of the World, Frederick A. Talbot, 1912

Men Working in the Boiler Room After the RMS Mauretania Conversion to an Oil Burner in 1921.

Men Working in the Boiler Room After the RMS Mauretania Conversion to an Oil Burner in 1921. GGA Image ID # 1bb1aac329

Conversion to Oil Burner

The most important result of the lengthy lay-up has been converting the vessel from coal to oil burning. Already holding the Blue Ribbon of the Atlantic, it is confidently expected that her great speed will be further increased with the substitution of oil for coal fuel. The work involved in the conversion has been of considerable magnitude.

Extending the entire length of the four boiler rooms on each vessel's side, the coal bunkers have been subdivided and suitably strengthened to store liquid fuel. The system of oil-burning which has been installed is known as the Wallsend-Howden. Capacity has been arranged for about 5.350 tons of oil fuel.

To provide this capability, the wing watertight compartments, previously used as coal bunkers and extending for the entire length of the boiler rooms, have been converted to oil-fuel tanks. There are fifteen tanks on each side of the vessel or thirty separate tanks. One tank on each side of each boiler room is arranged as a settling tank, to which the fuel is transferred from the remaining storage tanks before passing to the pumping and heating pump units which supply oil to the burners.

There is a transfer pump in each boiler room for transferring the oil fuel from the storage to the settling tanks. The settling tanks are provided with heating coils to bring the fuel to a suitable fluidity for pumping to the burners. Three pumping and heating units are fitted in each boiler room, two for regular use and one as a standby.

There are four filling stations for taking oil fuel on board, arranged two on each side of the ship above the main deck. The supply pipes from the supply source are coupled up to the ship's piping system at these stations. At each filling station is a filter.

After passing through the filter in each case, the fuel is led by a vertical line to the mainline of filling and suction piping, which extends on each side for the entire length of each boiler room. From these main pipelines, branches are taken to each tank. Each branch is provided with a valve so that oil may be supplied to or taken back from any tank, as desired.

The next stage is the transfer pumps to draw the fuel from the storage tanks through the main pipelines and pass it through a discharge piping system to the settling tanks. The oil is taken from each settling tank through a separate valve on the tank and piping system to the oil-fuel pressure pump units.

Air pipes are provided from the top of each tank to permit the escape of air when filling the tanks and act as a means of overflow to prevent undue stress upon the structure of the tanks. For overflow purposes, these branch pipes are connected to main pipelines on each side of the ship.

These main lines have a droop aft so that any overflow of oil is led to the aftermost wing tanks on each side, which act, therefore, as overflow tanks and have relief valves placed above the waterline to prevent undue pressure on the tanks. A system of enumerator gauges has been installed to show the oil level.

Forecasts New Transatlantic Record

The Cunard Liner Mauretania arrived in New York Friday morning, March 31, 1922, from Southampton via Cherbourg after an absence dating back to the last week of July 1921.

She has been equipped as an oil burner during that interval and otherwise generally reconditioned. Conversion to an oil burner is intimated to effect a saving of something like $25,000 on each round trip.

She made the passage from Cherbourg to the Ambrose Channel Lightship, 3,161 miles, in 5 days, 12 hours, and 17 minutes, her average speed being 24 knots which is the fastest time recorded by any vessel since the outbreak of the war in August 1914.

Captain Arthur H. Rostron, R. N. R., master of the Mauretania, says that he had no doubt she would beat her own record westbound of 4 days, 10 hours, and 41 minutes easily when conditions were right.

The biggest day's average was from noon the day before until 6.30 o'clock of the morning when she reached the Ambrose Channel Lightship. She logged 25.31 during that time. (American Shipping, 10 April 1922)

Due to the installation of oil-burning equipment in the boiler rooms of the Cunard liner Mauretania, the engineering staff totals now 175 as against 446 when the vessel operated as a coal burner. Of course, the difference in numbers is due entirely to eliminating stokers and trimmers.

Retirement & Scrapping of RMS Mauretania

Reconditioning and Refitting the Mauretania as an Oil Burner

Reconditioning

The extensive reconditioning work has been the perfection of her already luxurious and spacious accommodation. One of the most notable alterations is the introduction of a specially designed parquet floor for dancing in the center of her stately lounge. Here passengers can dance without interfering with the general comfort of non-dancers, the nooks of the lounge being utilized as sitting-out rooms.

The lounge forms a charming ensemble representative of an 18th-century French Salon. The carpet of soft green blends delicately with the chairs and settees, while the dull polished mahogany of the paneling, with their gilt moldings relieved by Fleur de Pecher, the marble pilasters, and the Aubusson tapestry panels complete an attractive picture.

The two-tiered dining saloon with its massive dome is one of the most magnificent rooms ever installed onboard a ship. It is executed in light oak, left unpolished, thus preserving its natural color, with hand-carved panels in no fewer than thirty-two different designs. The Francois Premier scheme of decoration enhances its incredible beauty.

There has been a re-arrangement and extension of the small tables, while four-legged chairs of the decoration period have been installed. The floor is laid with marble tiling.

The renovation work in the smoking-room brings out the beauties of the Italian decoration of the period of the fifteenth century, while the new upholstery and carpet in the Louis Seize writing room and library add materially to the coziness of the stunning apartment with its iron-wrought dome.

A further improvement that brings the Mauretania into line with the latest practice in the most modern and luxurious hotels anywhere is the inclusion of numerous additional private bathrooms in her stateroom accommodation. The stateroom accommodation has been re-laid with new carpets, and many of the en suite rooms have been paneled with silk.

Final Voyage

Twenty-eight years of service came to an end when Cunard withdrew the Mauretania from service following a final eastward crossing from New York to Southampton in September 1934. On 1 July 1935, she left Southampton for the last time, beginning the 488-mile journey north to Rosyth, Scotland sailing past Amble on her way to the docks at Rosyth arriving at 6 am on July 4, 1935.

Captain A. T. Brown commanded the Mauretania on this final voyage with a skeleton crew and few passengers. Her final destination, the Rosyth Naval Base and Dockyard, is located on the southern coast of Scotland in Fife, west of Inverkeithing. Interestingly, the Mauretania underwent her official speed trials just 50 miles from Rosyth in November 1907.

Excerpt from Mauretania 75th Anniversary - Cunard's Edwardian Liners. https://edwardianliners.weebly.com/mauretania-75th-anniversary.html

Mauretania's Last Voyage (1935) by British Pathé. YouTube Video Retrieved 2022-05-15.

Officers and Crew

Members of the Crew of the RMS Mauretania.

Members of the Crew of the RMS Mauretania. GGA Image ID # 1bb30f60b4

Cunard will employ over 800 persons on various duties on board the Mauretania. Of these, the more significant number is the engineers' and the stewards' staff, comparatively small sailing staff.

 A complete list is given in the following table:

  • The captain's rooms are placed at the forward end of the deckhouse on the boat deck, immediately beneath the navigating bridge.
  • The officers are berthed in a house on top of the sun deck, just behind the wheelhouse, and they have a messroom upon the shelter deck aft.
  • The seamen and petty officers have rooms right forward upon the main and upper decks.
  • The engineers' accommodation is situated upon the shelter deck, adjoining the engine casing.
  • The firemen and trimmers are berthed on the main deck over the No. 4 boiler and engine rooms.
  • The doctor, pursers, chef, and chief stewards have pleasant rooms situated amidships close to the grand entrance. The stewards are mostly berthed aft.

Table Showing the Employee Count of Officers and Crew of the Mauretania, 1907.

Table Showing the Employee Count of Officers and Crew of the Mauretania, 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bb3246744

Additional Photos of the RMS Mauretania

Entrace on the Boat Deck Showing Elevators (Lifts) on the RMS Mauretania.

Entrance on the Boat Deck Showing Elevators (Lifts) on the RMS Mauretania. As the First-Class Passenger Accommodation Is Situated on Five Decks, Considerable Exertion Is Required to Go up the Staircase from the Lowest to the Uppermost Deck. Therefore, for the Comfort of the Passengers, Two Electrically Driven Passenger Elevators Have Been Fitted at the Main Stairway by Messrs. R. Waygood & Co., Limited, of London. These Lifts Have a Vertical Travel of 37 ft. 6 in., Extending from the Main to the Boat Decks. The Controller Is Magnetically Operated and Is Worked from the Car Utilizing a Special Car Switch Having an "Up," "Down," and " Stop " Position. The Lifts May Be Called from Any Deck, and an Electric Bell and Indicator Being Provided in Each Elevator. There are 14 Waygood Lift Elevators on the SS Mauretania. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bac150358

The First Class Regal Suite Bedroom, Starboard Side, Looking Aft.

The First-Class Regal Suite Bedroom, Starboard Side, Looking Aft. With the Regal Rooms, One Is Immediately Impressed by an Air of Delicate Refinement throughout the Suite, Which Comprises a Drawing-Room, Dining-Room, Two Bedrooms, Bathroom, and Private Corridor, All Starting from the Main Alleyway on the Promenade Deck. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1badbb4578

Plate LXXIV Fig. 66:- Lower First Class Dining Saloon on the Mauretania.

Plate LXXIV Fig. 66:- Lower First Class Dining Saloon on the Mauretania. The Height from the Floor of the Lower Dining Saloon to the Top of the Dome Is about 28 Feet. Immediately Abaft the Grand Entrance Is the Lower Dining Saloon, While Two Spacious Corridors on Each Side of the Ship Lead in the Opposite Direction to Numerous Staterooms. The Lower Dining Saloon Tables Accommodate 5 to 14 Passengers. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bae798d75

Plate LXXVI Fig. 70:- First Class Lounge, Starboard Side, on the Mauretania.

Plate LXXVI Fig. 70:- First Class Lounge, Starboard Side, on the Mauretania. The First-Class Lounge or Music Room, Situated on the Boat Deck, Is 80 Ft. Long, 56 Ft. Wide, and Lift. 9 In. High. It Is a Noble Apartment, Treated in That Charming Style Obtained in France in the Last Quarter of the Eighteenth Century, and of Which the Petit Trianon Is Perhaps the Most Typical Example. The Arrangement of the Panels, and the Delicacy and Design of the Carvings and Columns, Might Have Been the Work of Gabriel or Miqué. Still, in His Scheme of Color, the Architect Has Been Inspired More by the Sumptuous Furniture of the Period than by the Wall Decoration, and That with the Happiest Result. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bae98e560

Plate LXXVI Fig. 71:- Tapestry Panel at the First Class Lounge on the Mauretania.

Plate LXXVI Fig. 71:- Tapestry Panel at the First Class Lounge on the Mauretania. The "Mauretania's" First-Class Music Room and Lounge Stand Out, Perhaps, as the Prominent Feature of This Magnificent Vessel. It Is an Apartment of Immense Size and Palatial Decoration and Would Compare with the Best Hotels. It Is, indeed, Difficult to Realize That One Is on Shipboard. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1baea21c95

First Class Library and Writing Room on the Mauretania.

First Class Library and Writing Room on the Mauretania. The Library or Writing Room, a Somewhat Smaller Room than the Lounge, Is Situated on the Same Deck and Is Decorated in the Same Style, Although the Color Scheme Is Entirely Different. Many Passengers Will Probably Regard This Room as the Most Beautiful in Color on the Ship, Although We Have Inclined to Award This Distinction to the Lounge. The Wall Paneling Is of Sycamore Stained a Silver-Grey. The Veneering Has Been Selected to Bring Out the Fine Grain, the Plain Portions of the Wood Being Entirely Discarded. As in the Lounge, the Carved Moldings Are Gilt, but the Gold Used Has a Slightly Greenish Tint to Harmonize with the Paneling. A Bookcase Forms the Paneling of One Side of the Central Portion of the Room, the Delicate Carving and Gilt Trellis of the Doors Greatly Enhancing the Appearance of the Wall. On the Opposite Side of the Room Is a Carved Chimneypiece of White Statuary Marble Surmounted by a Mirror Similar in Design to the Central Doors of the Bookcase, which it Faces and Reflects. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1baeb0185b

Fireplace in the First Class Smoking Room on the RMS Mauretania.

Fireplace in the First-Class Smoking Room on the RMS Mauretania. The Shipbuilder, November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1bad7aabca

Ordinary Stateroom on D Deck of the Mauretania.

Ordinary Stateroom on D Deck of the Mauretania. Several More Ordinary Staterooms Are Provided on the Upper Deck, Fitted to Accommodate One, Two, or Three Passengers. They Are Furnished with Folding Lavatories, Dressing Tables, Sofas, and Wardrobes, the Furniture and Fittings Being Generally Similar to Those in the Rooms on the Main Deck. GGA Image ID # 1bb1382e08

Plate XCIV Fig. 175:- Stokehold No. 3 on the Mauretania.

Plate XCIV Fig. 175:- Stokehold No. 3 on the Mauretania. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1baec62afc

Plate XCVII Fig. 186:- Pumping Engine Room on the RMS Mauretania.

Plate XCVII Fig. 186:- Pumping Engine Room on the RMS Mauretania. Engineering Magazine, 8 November 1907. GGA Image ID # 1baee13ea5

Mauretania's Engines Showing Starting Platform.

Mauretania's Engines Showing Starting Platform. The Syren and Shipping, 1 January 1908. GGA Image ID # 1baffec6e3

 

FAQ - RMS Mauretania

Did the Mauretania help the titanic?

The RMS Mauretania was on a westbound voyage from Liverpool to New York beginning on 10 April 1912. Since the Mauretania was docked at Queenstown, Ireland, during the RMS Titanic disaster, the ship did not factor into the rescue operations for the Titanic.

What is the Mauretania famous for?

For 28 years, the Mauretania played a poignant part not only in the maritime history of the world but in business life, as well as being of invaluable service to the United States in times of war. When launched in 1907, the Mauretania was the largest ship ever built by man. For almost 22 years, she remained the fastest liner ever produced. Even after losing her world championship for size and speed, she remained the world's most famous steamship. It wasn't just her size or speed that had given the Mauretania her fame. That rested on something more secure and intangible — on her personality, for the Mauretania was a ship with a fighting heart.

Did the Mauretania sink?

No. The Mauretania (1906) was scrapped and dismantled in Rosyth, Scotland, to the dismay of her most loyal patrons. Most of her furnishings were sold before or during the scrapping process.

How long did it take the Mauretania to cross the Atlantic?

The RMS Mauretania was an Express Liner capable of over 26 knots top speed. She could cross the Atlantic, either eastbound or westbound, in about 4 1/2 days.

Speed Records Set

  • 30 November – 5 December 1907 Fastest Eastbound Crossing of the Atlantic with an Average Speed of 23.69 knots.
  • 26 to 30 September 1909 Blue Riband for the fastest westbound crossing in 4 days, 10 hours, and 51 minutes with an average speed of 26.06 knots. Mauretania maintained that record for 20 years, losing it to Norddeutscher Lloyd's liner Bremen in July 1929.

Blue Ribbons

  • Holder of the Blue Riband Westbound Record 1909-1929
  • Holder of the Blue Riband Eastbound Record 1907-1929

RMS Mauretania (1906) Ephemera Collection

Digitized Ephemera for the RMS Mauretania. Typical ephemera items in our maritime collection include passenger lists, brochures, event and entertainment programs, and other memorabilia produced for a voyage or ship.

Passenger Manifest, Cunard Line Mauretania 1909 Liverpool to New York

1908-04-11 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: Saloon
  • Date of Departure: 11 April 1908
  • Route: Liverpool to New York
  • Commander: Captain John Pritchard
Front Cover, "Famous Cunarders," Published by the Cunard Line 21 March 1910.

Famous Cunarders - 1910

8-Page Booklet/Leaflet from 1910 titled "Famous Cunarders" provided an illustrated introduction to their "A"-List Cunard fleet, including the Campania, Carmania & Caronia, Carpathia, Lusitania & Mauretania, Pannonia, and the Saxonia & Ivernia.

Page 1 of 2, Cunard Line RMS Mauretania Saloon Passenger List - 14 June 1911.

1911-06-14 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: Saloon
  • Date of Departure: 14 June 1911
  • Route: New York for Liverpool via Queenstown (Cobh)
  • Commander: Captain W. T. Turner, R.N.R.
Front Cover, Cunard Passenger Log Book circa 1913

Cunard Passenger Log Book - 1913

Rare Third-Class Accommodation on Cunard Liners featuring interior and exterior photographs of the ships and accommodations for third class/steerage passengers. Undated brochure circa 1913. Its contents were meant to entice the immigrants to book passages to the New World. Ships Featured: Lusitania and Mauretania, Caronia and Carmania, Franconia and Laconia, Campania, Ivernia and Saxonia, and the Ascania.

Front Cover, Fishguard Information for Passengers. Published 1913 Cunard Line.

Fishguard Information for Passengers of Cunard - 1913

Fishguard is situated on the southwest coast of Wales and is the nearest British port to New York used by Atlantic liners. It affords the quickest means of reaching London and is also a convenient port for the Continent. Ships Featured: Lusitania and Mauretania.

1921 Brochure Cover, Cunard Line Passengers' Guide to the RMS Mauretania.

1921 - Cunard Passenger Guide - RMS Mauretania

Shirt Pocket Sized 18-Page brochure from the Cunard Line provided a handy reference guide to navigating the RMS Mauretania covering all three passenger classes -- Saloon, Second, and Third. A lot of information but only a few images.

1921-06-25 RMS Aquitania

1921-04-30 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: Cabin
  • Date of Departure: 30 April 1921
  • Route: Southampton to New York via Cherbourg
  • Commander: Captain A. H. Rostron, C.B.E., R.D., R.N.R.
1928-09-26 RMS Mauretania

1928-09-26 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: Second Class
  • Date of Departure: 26 September 1928
  • Route: New York to Plymouth, Cherbourg, and Southampton
  • Commander: Captain R. L. Alexander, D.S.O., R.D., R.N.R.
Front Cover, Cunard Line RMS Mauretania First Class Passenger List - 2 August 1930.

1930-08-02 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: First Class
  • Date of Departure: 2 August 1930
  • Route: Southampton to New York via Cherbourg
  • Commander: Captain W. Prothero
Front Cover, Cunard Line RMS Mauretania Tourist Class Passenger List - 22 August 1931.

1931-08-22 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: Tourist
  • Date of Departure: 22 August 1931
  • Route: Southampton to New York via Cherbourg
  • Commander: Captain R. V. Peel, R.D., R.N.R.
Front Cover, Cunard Line RMS Mauretania First Class Passenger List - 6 April 1932.

1932-04-06 RMS Mauretania Passenger List

  • Steamship Line: Cunard Line
  • Class of Passengers: First Class
  • Date of Departure: 6 April 1932
  • Route: Southampton to New York via Cherbourg
  • Commander: Captain R. V. Peel, R.D., R.N.R.
Easter Dinner Menu, RMS Mauretania, Cunard Line, 1934

1934-04-01 RMS Mauretania Easter Dinner Menu

The beautiful graphic cover provides an entryway to an exceptional and extensive Bill of Fare for this Au Revoir Easter Dinner onboard the Mauretania. Entrées included Fresh Turtle Steaks, Sirloin Steaks Chasseur, and Roast Quarter of Lamb.

 

Ephemera contained in the GG Archives collection represent the souvenirs provided to the passengers of each voyage. Many of these souvenir ephemeral items have disappeared over the years.

Our selection varies considerably by ship and likely contains only a sampling of what was originally produced and printed by the steamship lines.

Bookmark pages you're researching and check back periodically for additions as we continue to digitize our extensive ephemera materials.

Bibliography

"The Cunard Turbine-Driven Quadruple-Screw Atlantic Liner 'Mauretania' Constructed by Messrs. Swan, Hunter, and Wigham Richardson, Limited, Wallsend-on-Tyne, Engine by The Wallsend Slipway and Engineering Company, Limited, Wallsend-on-Tyne," in Engineering, London: Offices of Engineering, 1907.

"Monarchs of the Seas: Cunard Liners 'Lusitania' and 'Mauretania,' the Largest Ships in the World," in The Master Mate and Pilot, New York: The American Association of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, Vol. 1, No. 1, June 1908, pp. 20-25.'

"The Ship of the Year. Cunard Express Liner 'Mauretania,' Built by Messrs. Swan, Hunter, and Wigham Richards, Ltd., Wallsend-on-Tyne," in The Syren and Shipping Illustrated, Vol. XLVI, No. 592, 1 January 1908, pp. 30-39.

A. G. Hood and H. Bocler, Compilers, "The Cunard Express Liner 'Mauretania.'" In The Shipbuilder: A Quarterly Magazine Devoted to The Shipbuilding, Marine Engineering, and Allied Industries, Vol. II, Special Number, November 1907.

Frederick A. Talbot, Steamship Conquest of the World, London: William Heinemann, 1912.

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