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January 4, 1897, San Francisco Call, San Francisco, California, U.S.A.

A Gale Delays the Lucania

QUEENSTOWN, Ireland, Jan. 3. The Cunard steamer Lucania, Captain Mackay, from Liverpool, was delayed off this port to-day by a gale and, instead of sailing at about 8 o'clock for New York, as it usually does, did not take its departure until 12:30 p. m.

September 17, 1989, San Francisco Call , San Francisco, California, U.S.A.

Towed In With a Broken Crank Shaft All on Board Are Exported Well.

QUEENSTOWN, Sept. 16. The Cunard steamer Aurania, bound from New York for Liverpool, which was reported off the south coast of Ireland, disabled and in tow, arrived here at 2 o'clock this morning. The captain of the Aurania reports that the crank shaft broke at 9:30 p. m., September 13. At 5:15 o'clock the following evening, while the steamer was 110 milea west of Fastnet the British steamer Marine, Captain Webster, bound from Montreal to London, sighted the Aurania and took her in tow. All on board the Aurania are well. The sea was calm during her passage and no unusual incidents, with the exception of the breaking of the shaft, are to be recorded. The Aurania will wait here for the arrival of a tug, which will tow her to Liverpool. All the passengers will be landed at this port.

November 29, 1890, Sacramento Daily Union, Sacramento, California, U.S.A.

Mails Left and Received There The Passenger's Reception Famous Places.

The word "Queenstown" has an attractive sound to most travelers to and from Europe. It is as good as the end or beginning of the ocean voyage on that side as Sandy Hook is on this. It is the first stop for a steamer from New York to Liverpool, and many passengers land there instead of completing the voyage, preferring to go on by rail. The first bit of land sighted by a boat from the United States is Crookhaven. This is simply a station where the vessel is spoken and her safe arrival is telegraphed over the world. From this point to Queenstown is about eighty miles, with but little to see but high and broken cliffs as a coast line. At the entrance to Queenstown harbor is a bold promontory called Roche's point. Here the mails and passengers not going to Liverpool and transferred to a tender and taken on shore. All in-coming steamers leave the mails here, and when bound out take on the English mails. The distance from Queenstown to Liverpool is 240 miles, and steamers usually take from seventeen to twenty hours in making it.

The time is occasionally increased by insufficiency of water at the Liverpool bar. But by the mail service via Dublin acd Holyhead the time between Queenstown and London, 201 miles farther than Liverpool, is only nineteen hours, so it is possible for a mail to be delivered in London before the steamer which brought it to Queenstown has entered the Mersey. The service is by train to Cork and Dublin; thence by channel steamers across the Irish sea to Holyhead, on the Welsh coast, and from Holyhead to the metropolis by fast trains, which cover the distance, 200 miles, in six hours and forty minutes.

Emigrant Ship, Queenstown Ireland.
Passengers Boarding an Emigrant Ship
Queenstown, Ireland

In coming to America the steamers wait at Queenstown for the mail leaving London at 9 o'clock in the evening of the day on which they sail from Liverpool. If one left the latter port at noon Saturday, she would be in Queenstown early Sunday morning, and would anchor there until the arrival of the train which left London nine hours after she left Liverpool, and which would be due in Queenstown at about o o'clock Sunday afternoon. A business man also gains a working day on shore by using the mail route to Queenstown, and the steamers themselves find it a convenient port for the embarkation of emigrants from Ireland. The passengers who embark at Liverpool usually have enough time ashore at Queenstown, while the steamers are waiting for the mail, to see the harbor, the River Lee, Cork, and even to kiss the Blarney stone, and for those bound to Europe it is the best starting point for the tour of Killarney.

Queenstown harbor is somewhat like that of New York. As the Narrows protect the latter, Roche's Point and its opposite headland shut out the storms from the former and keep the water within smooth when that outs.de is raging. The circular bay, with its islands and hilly shores, is also a duplicate of what may be seen in the neighborhood of Staten Island. At the mouth the land is craggy and the hights are fortified, but further in the foliage is profuse. There is anchorage for thousands of ships and a sufficient depth of water to admit the largest at all tides.

At the head of the bay, almost straight from the Point, is the town, built in terraces, on a wooded and heathery bluff. The houses are nearly all white and uniform in feature. Their color and the frequent green which surrounds them give them a tropical resemblance, especially when the sun lights them up aud distills rainbow tints from the atmosphere. At the foot of the cliff and along the quays is a street of shops and taverns, most of them aiming for patronage at tourists, emigrants and seamen. Tlie higher terraces are principally dwellings, and the higher they are the better is the class lo which they belong. On the ridge above all tlie others are two or three houses which may be called palaces. Though the interests of Queenstown are not much varied, the lines of caste and rank are drawn with English precision. Primarily the chief interest of Queenstown is as a port of call. Like Falmouth, on the southern coast of England, it is made for by many ships consigned to order, or sent there that the choice of a port of delivery may be governed by the condition of the market aud their cargoes.

When a passenger gets ashore he is met by as noisy and demonstrative a crowd of drivers and hawkers as he ever struck in any American city. Unless taking one of the worn and rattling jaunting cars it is a tedious and vexatious eflfort to get rid of them all. If the first mob is escaped, it is only to meet a horde of beggars it is even more difficult to shake. Then there are hawkers of various articles at outrageously high prices, who lie and flatter without limit. If a refusal to buy is persisted in, the soft talk turns to abuse and curses.

Cork is eleven miles from Queenstown, on the River Lee. Five miles beyond is Blarney. The town is a busy village, devoted to making cloth, but Blarney Castle, once lived in by the Earls of Clancarty, is only a ruin. The alleged power of the Blarney stone to endow any one kissing it with a "special gift of "soft and insinuating speech" is familiar; but as it is necessary to be hung head first from the top of the tumbling castle to reach the stone set in the wall, a genuine osculation is rarely enjoyed. If there is time, a visit to Glengariff and Killarney is very pleasant. The region abounds in natural beauties, all enhanced by history, tradition and poetry. There are "lakes and mountains, hills and valley, fertility and barrenness, green lanes and bleak uplands. To reach Glengariff a short railroad is taken to Bantry, a little town on a bay breaking in seven miles from the Atlantic. Glengariff is at the head of the bay among the mountains.

From a hight above the scene is one of sterile and tawny colored splendor. The water spreading out to its gates is encircled by savage mountains; the rocks are bare and'brown; the sky is cold. But getting down to a lower level there is an elastic turf, springing under the foot, a sound of many rills which gush out from between the rocks, and a delightful mildness of the air. The very hedges, as dense as the hawthorn of English fields, are compact masses of blossom, and the vines clamber np above every stone. There are several houses and a couple of hotels, and so genial is the climate that they are occupied the whole year through. The three lakes of Killarney are in a long valley among the mountains forty miles beyond. The road promises nothing but what is bleak and wild, but once there the pasture and woodland open np beautiful beyond words to tell. It is hard to decide where to stop. Days can be passed in continuing the jaunt, for there are the Acherontic pools, sweet Junisfallen, Ross Castle, Muckross Abbey, the Colleen, Bawn caves and the Eagle's nest, every one paid homage to by poet and painter.

December 16, 1898, San Francisco Call , San Francisco, California, U.S.A.

Supposed to Be One of the Transatlantic Liners and Shows Signals.

SKIRBEREEN. Ireland. Dec. 15. A dispatch received here from Baltimore, about seven miles south from this place, saysthat a steamer, supposed to be a transAtlantic liner, is in distress off the coast there. She has been showing signals of distress for some time. The White Star liner Teutonic sailed from Queenstown at 1:10 p. m. today for New York. The Red Star liner Rhynland also sailed to-day from Queenstown for Philadelphia.

March 26, 1905, Los Angeles Herald, Los Angeles, California

Big Immigration From Ireland

QUEENSTOWN, March 25. The season's tide of emigration fully set in today when the steamer Celtic took 1040 Irish from this port for America. Reports from the interior lead to the conclusion that emigration from Ireland this year will exceed the record for several years past.

1899. World's Fleet. Boston Daily Globe

Lloyds Register of Shipping gives the entire fleet of the world as 28,180 steamers and sailing vessels, with a total tonnage of 27,673,628, of which 39 perent are British.

Great Britain10,990 vessels, total tonnage of 10,792,714
United States 3,010 vessels, total tonnage of 2,405,887
Norway 2,528 vessels, tonnage of 1,604,230
Germany 1,676 vessels, with a tonnage of 2,453,334, in which are included her particularly large ships.
Sweden 1,408 vessels with a tonnage of 643, 527
Italy1,150 vessels
France 1,182 vessels

For Historical Comparison
Top 10 Maritime Nations Ranked by Value (2017)

  Country # of Vessels







1 Greece 4,453 206.47 $88.0
2 Japan 4,317 150.26 $79.8
3 China 4,938 159.71 $71.7
4 USA 2,399 55.92 $46.5
5 Singapore 2,662 64.03 $41.7
6 Norway 1,668 39.68 $41.1
7 Germany 2,923 81.17 $30.3
8 UK 883 28.78 $24.3
9 Denmark 1,040 36.17 $23.4
10 South Korea 1,484 49.88 $20.1
Total 26,767 87.21 $466.9

The Project

Maritime Nations, Ships, Sea Captains, Merchants, Merchandise, Ship Passengers and VIPs sailing into San Francisco during the 1800s.



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Sources: As noted on entries and through research centers including National Archives, San Bruno, California; CDNC: California Digital Newspaper Collection; San Francisco Main Library History Collection; and Maritime Museums and Collections in Australia, China, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Wales, Norway, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, etc.

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