Did You Know?
- ss Queen Mary

Model of ss Queen Mary

The first of the Cunard liners known as the "Queens" was the Queen Mary. She was built by John Brown & Co Ltd, Clydebank.

975 feet long and with a gross tonnage of 80,774 tons, building started in 1931. But the world-wide slump resulted in Cunard not being able to finance the project and work stopped, laying off 3,000 men. Construction resumed in 1934 and she was launched on 26 September 1934 by Queen Mary, wife of King George V.

Her maiden voyage, on the Southampton-Cherbourg-New York route, was on 27 May 1936. With a speed of over 30 knots, she quickly won the "Blue Ribbon" as the fastest ship crossing the Atlantic, with 2,000 passengers.

She was used as a troopship during WW2 - her first voyage in this new role was to take 5,000 Australian troops from Sydney, Australia to Scotland. After the war, she returned to the Atlantic service.

Finally withdrawn in 1967, the ship is now berthed at Long Beach, California as a maritime museum and hotel.

The illustration above is of a scale model of rhe Queen Mary in the Transport Museum in Glasgow.

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