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Ports of Call for Steamships and Ocean Liners

Ports of Call

The Ports of Call of the many steamship lines have varied histories and backgrounds. They operated much like the hub and spoke system of the World Airlines of today. Smaller ports were often unable to accommodate the largest steamships but handled the valuable traffic from feeder lines that brought many immigrants to the major ports.

Harbor of Antwerp, Belgium circa 1921

Port of Antwerp

Antwerp harbor is unique, lying about fifty miles from the North Sea, on the right bank of the river Scheldt, at the crossing of the most important maritime route and the densest and most extensive net of rivers, canals and railroads.

Map of the Bermuda Islands circa Late 1930s.

Port of Bermuda

The Bermudas, or Bermuda as this group is known today, is the world's most northerly group of coral islands, situated in a southeasterly direction, 666 miles from New York, 568 miles from Cape Hatteras, and 720 miles from Halifax.

Boston Harbor and Waterfront

Boston Harbor

Boston offers to steamship lines serving the United States exceptional inducements to bring their through immigrant passengers via Boston. Photographs, Maps, Articles and Information on the History of the Port of Boston and Immigration and usage by Steamships.

A View of Bremerhaven at the Kaiserhafen circa 1927.

Bremerhaven Port

Bremerhaven, a port on the Weser, near 10 miles from its mouth, was founded by Bremen in 1827 on ground acquired from Hanover, and soon became a thriving place. It has extensive docks and quays, and may be regarded as the seaport of Bremen.

The Norddeutscher Lloyd Tender Departs with Passengers at Cherbourg Quay.

Port of Cherbourg, France

Cherbourg has attained a position of importance as a port of call for transatlantic liners because of its 40-mile proximity to the routes followed by vessels plying between North and South American ports and Southampton or between North and South American ports and North European ports via Plymouth or Cobh.

Scene in the Copenhagen Free Harbor

Port of Copenhagen

Situated on the highway of traffic from the Atlantic to the Baltic, Copenhagen is the foremost port of transshipment for the trade from America to the Baltic countries and the home port of the Scandinavian-American Line.

The Landing Stage at Cuxhaven circa 1929.

Port of Cuxhaven

The port of Cuxhaven, which lies on the south bank at the mouth of the Elbe about 64 miles below Hamburg, comprises a considerable part of the Ritzebuettel district, a detached part of the Free State of Hamburg.

Mauretania Passengers Coming Ashore.

Port of Fishguard, Wales

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.

The Port of Genoa, Italy circa 1907.

Port of Genoa, Italy

The approach to Genoa, from either Naples or the western Mediterranean, is in sight of noble shores. Arriving from the West the course is along the French Riviera, with the bold cliffs and famous cities and the Maritime Alps in full sight.

The Port of Gibraltar circa 1905.

Port of Gibraltar

Nearing the Strait of Gibraltar, the vessel crossing the Atlantic first sights the bold cliff shores of Cape St. Vincent in the southwest corner of Portugal. Lighthouse and signal stations here are plainly seen.

View of Glasgow Upper Harbour Looking Westward.

Port of Glasgow, Scottland

Today, the quayage of Glasgow is over ten miles in length, sufficient to berth forty or fifty ocean vessels at a time, and the total area of the harbor and docks includes over 181 acres of water.

The Port of Gothenburg, Sweden, Which is Being Enlarged and Modernized to Handle Greatly Increased Traffic.

Port of Gothenburg, Sweden

The Gothenburg Free Port has a total pier frontage of 3.640 feet with 30 feet of water alongside. A concrete warehouse of five stories. and several enclosed sheds have been built for the storage and parceling of goods.

General View of the North End of Hamburg Harbor.

Port of Hamburg, Germany

Hamburg is, by far, the most important port in the German Republic. Its yearly commerce is slightly in excess of the combined total traffic of all other German seaports. Its trade is not only greater in volume and value but it is also more diversified and widespread than that of any domestic rival.

Hull's Busy Waterfront - Queen's Dock.

Port of Hull, England

Hull's right to be numbered among the great seaports of the world does not rest simply upon its present preeminence as a shipping port. It has older claims to the distinction.

RMS Lusitania at the Liverpool Landing Stage (1912)

Port of Liverpool, England

During the latter half of the 19th century Liverpool became Britain's No 1 port for passengers wishing to travel to America, and earned for itself the soubriquet The Gateway to the West'.

The Centre Branch Dock -- Tillbury Docs

Port of London, England

The Port of London consists of the river Thames from the sea to the outskirts of the Metropolis, with enormous areas devoted to various docks, besides Wharves, warehouses, and factories which line the river for mile on mile.

The Port and Harbor of Naples, Italy.

Port of Naples, Italy

Vessels entering the Bay of Naples pass close to the mountain island of Ischia on the left of the route. Testaccio and Barano above are particularly noticeable towns on the slopes of the hills leading up to Mount Epomeo, which tops the scene.

View of Hudson River From West Side of Manhattan.

New York Harbor - Pre World War II

The geographical conditions which themselves made New York the logical gateway of this country by reason of its great expanse of waterfront, its favorable tide conditions, its deep channels and its ready access to the ocean, caused a. growth that has no parallel in history.

Aerial View of New York City and Vicinity. Hudson River at Left; East River at Right.

New York Harbor - Post World War II

New York City is located in the southeastern part of New York State and is the focal point of the Port of New York. The port includes a waterfrontage of 755 miles measured along the shoreline of its many bays, rivers, and indentations within the port district.

View of the piers at the Union Municipal Terminal, Army Supply Base, Norfolk.

Norfolk Harbor

Already the world's greatest coaling port, Norfolk attracted conspicuous attention in 1920 by doubling its exports, and increasing its imports five-fold.

Common Sight at Plymouth - Seeing the Firemen and Coal Passers Cooling Off at the Rail.

Port of Plymouth, England

Plymouth - Its advantage as a landing place and the attractiveness of the surrounding country, rapidly becoming the most important recreation ground in England, are bringing to it a degree of prominence in American thought scarcely second to that which Southampton has attained.

New Building on the Port of Providence State Pier in 1915.

Port of Providence, Rhode Island

Steamship Lines at Present Using the Port of Providence Regularly include Fabre Line, to Naples, Marseilles, Cape Verde Islands and New York; Colonial Navigation Company, to New York; Hartford and New York Transportation Company, to New York; and others.

Ocean Liner at Queenstown circa 1905.

Port of Cobh, Ireland

For American travelers making their first visit to the British Islands, and wishful to see some of the beauties of the Emerald Isle, a good plan is to land at Queenstown and proceed through Glengariff to the far-famed Lakes of Killarney.

The Masshaven, 148 acres in area with 28 feet depth of water, is a busy place, filled with seagoing steamships and river boats.

Port of Rotterdam

Rotterdam is, par excellence, a "transit port." It is one of the main gates of entrance to and egress from the interior of Europe and an entrepot or transshipping station for the merchandise of the world.

Approaching the Port of Southampton, Cunard White Star Docks. The Queen Mary Dock is on the Right.

Port of Southampton

The Southampton docks, 78 miles from London, owned and managed by the London and South Western Railway Company, are situated within a perfectly sheltered harbor, one of the best lighted in the United Kingdom, making the docks as accessible by night as by day.

Port of Trondheim, Norway

Trondhjem is built on the Trondhjem fiord, and occupies the delta formed by the river Nid, with suburbs extending up the surrounding hills. With its 40,000 inhabitants it is the third town in Norway in point of size. (1906)


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The Folks Behind the GG Archives

The GG Archives is the work and passion of two people, Paul Gjenvick, a professional archivist, and Evelyne Gjenvick, a curator. Paul earned a Masters of Archival Studies - a terminal degree from Clayton State University in Georgia, where he studied under renowned archivist Richard Pearce-Moses. Our research into the RMS Laconia and SS Bergensfjord, the ships that brought two members of the Gjønvik family from Norway to the United States in the early 20th century, has helped us design our site for other genealogists. The extent of original materials at the GG Archives can be very beneficial when researching your family's migration from Europe.