MOORE-McCORMACK COMPANY

TIMELINE

 

September 2, 1880

Emmet J. McCormack was born in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn, Kings County, New York.  He was a son of Irish immigrants.

September 21, 1880

Albert V. Moore was born in Hackensack, New Jersey.

August 30, 1888

Robert Corwin Lee was born in Nebraska.

1905

Emmet J. McCormack organized the Commercial Coal Company with a view to supplying British tramp ships.  As he expanded his operations, he opened offices at 29 Broadway.  During the course of this activity, he became acquainted with Albert V. Moore, secretary of the Tweedie Trading Company, whose activities included ship chartering, among others.

1912

Emmet J. McCormack founded the first Staten Island-Brooklyn Ferry in 1912 with the old wide-wheeler John Inglis.

July 9, 1913

Messrs. McCormack and Moore (both just shy of 33 years of age) formed Moore & McCormack Company, Incorporated, to charter ships, then to own them.  Capitalized at $5,000 with three officer-directors (Henry F. Molloy, as Secretary), with two desks in a ninth floor office of an eleven-story building at 29 Broadway and with ambitions, plans, and hopes as the Company's major assets.

1920

Robert C. Lee began working for Moore & McCormack Company.

January 16, 1921

A new direct steamship line between Philadelphia, Cork, Dublin and Londonderry was announced by Director Sproul of the Department of Wharves, Docks and Ferries.  The line will be operated by Moore & McCormack Company, Inc.  The first steamship scheduled to sail next month will be the West Gambo.

August 29, 1921

Nine steamships formerly operated under charter by the United States Mail Steamship Company will be run as a fleet under the name of the United States Line.

The name, "United States Line," was selected by three Shipping Board Agents of which Emmet McCormack of Moore & McCormack was one.  The other two companies involved in the naming were United American Lines, Inc. and the Roosevelt Steamship Company.

November 2, 1925

The Shipping Board opened competitive bids for the sale of the Pan-America Line, consisting of four ships plying between New York City and South American ports.  Moore & McCormack and Munson Steamship Line are engaged in keen rivalry for possession of these vessels.  Munson offered $8,200,000 for the group of four, while Moore & McCormack offered $4,100,100 for the group.  After the bids were opened, the Munson Line immediately made a new bid, a verbal one, of $4,104,000 for the four vessels.  The verbal bid was protested by Moore & McCormack.  The four ships of the Pan-America Line are the American Legion, Pan-America, Western World and Southern Cross.  They are built of steel, are oil burners of the combination passenger and cargo type and have a rated speed of 15-1/2 knots.  They were built by the Government for use in transporting troops and materials during the World War.

1926

Moore & McCormack, Inc., as operators, took over the Republics Line which consisted of 11 steamers and the motorship, Tampa.

1927

The American Scantic Line was sold to Moore & McCormack and was improved under private ownership, with the Pennsylvania railroad eventually purchasing an important interest in it.

The American Scantic Line was the first of the Shipping Board lines to enter into agreements with competitive foreign lines under which the United States acquired an equal division of the freight moving between American and foreign ports.

February 1, 1927

The Shipping Board terminated its agreement with Moore & McCormack, Inc., as operators and transferred the line to C. H. Sprague &  Sons, Inc., of Boston as agents.  The decision closed one of the hardest fights the board has had presented to it for a long time on such an issue, marked as it was by influential and wide support from New York public and private interests in behalf of Moore & McCormack.  No charge of inefficiency was laid by the Board against Moore & McCormack, but the reallocation was made in the belief that an even better service would result.  The New York claim for continued operation was based upon contentions that the Moore & McCormack operation was efficient and the volume of business given the Line at that port justified its headquarters being retained there.

April 17, 1929

A contract has been completed by the American Scantic Line to establish a weekly steamship service between the North Atlantic ports of the United States and the newly created Polish port of Gdynia.  It was signed in Poland by Robert C. Lee and was celebrated at a dinner tendered by the Polish Government in Warsaw at which Mr. Lee was guest of honor.  The dinner was attended by the Polish Prime Minister and members of the Cabinet, and by Minister Stetson, Consul General Cole, and Commercial Attaché Lane.

June 30, 1931

Emmet J. McCormack, President of the New York Maritime Exchange and Vice President of Moore & McCormack, made a statement advocating conversion of the site of old Fort Schuyler, on Throgs Neck, the Bronx, for the use of the New York Merchant Marine Academy. Fort Schuyler is scheduled for abandonment by the government.

Nathan Straus, Jr., President of the Park Association of New York, urged acquisition of the site for a public park. He said "a few well-meaning, well-intentioned people want to take these 52 acres, the finest waterfront peninsular in the greater city, to train a few boys to become officers and sailors in the merchant marine." Mr. McCormack took exception to this state and said that the future of the merchant marine was of vast importance to the country. Mr. McCormack expressed surprise "that a man of Mr. Straus' prominence could take such a limited view of the merchant marine, as every one knows the merchant marine faces a future of doubt and uncertainty, as without a highly trained group of officers as the academy is designed to turn out it cannot develop properly."

Mr. McCormack also said that 1/6th of the total area of the Bronx was devoted to public park space and also mentioned many other parks in the City.

July 20, 1931

Efforts by the ship lines operating in the coffee trade between Brasil and the Gulf and North Atlantic ports to form a single conference and stabilize freight rates have failed and coffee rates were declared on an open basis.  The rates were 65 cents per 132 pounds on passenger ships and 60 cents on freight ships.  E. N. Stockard of Moore & McCormack Company said that his company sought to bring all lines into conference and had offered inducements to the other lines to obtain their approval.  This failed when the lines, Munson, American Republics Line, Furness-Prince, Lloyd Brasileiro, the International Freighting Corporation, Moore & McCormack, and the Wilhelmson Line, suggested a pool and the allotment of cargoes.

The Munson Line is opposed to the attitude of Moore & McCormack due to the fact that certain freight lines operating outside the conference have cut rates to such an extent as to prejudice not only the lines of the Coffee Conference but also the shippers who have patronized the conference lines.  "The Munson Line believes in conferences which have government approval and in the stabilizing of freight rates on coffee as being in the best interests of shippers, consignees and the shipping lines concerned.  However, during this period of open rates it will be our policy to work with all shippers and consignees in an effort to enable them to meet competitive transportation conditions brought about by this upset in coffee rates."  Mr. Munson described the situation as "unfortunate."

July 22, 1931

Robert C. Lee, Executive Vice President, having recently returned from a trip to Russia, spoke at the American Institute of Shipping, 17 Battery Place, and urged that the United States participate actively in trade with Russia and to develop what he termed "a real market for American goods and American ideas."  He continued to say that regardless of unfavorable living conditions, the country is building for the future and is more anxious to do business with the United States than with any other nation.  He could not believe that the American Government has irrefutable evidence that convict labor is employed in the production or transportation of goods which are carried in the ships of the American Scantic Line.  He experienced no restraint in going about the country and found Russians anxious to know his reaction to the Communist form of government, ready to laugh heartily when he expressed his disapproval and seldom making any effort to have him change his mind.

He stated that "If the United States and the rest of the world want to destroy the Russian Government by an economic embargo, let them do it honestly and not resort to foolish subterfuge.  Above all, I hope our government will not make the stupid blunder of simply driving this Russian trade into the hands of foreign competitors."  He continued on to say that the United States is no longer the provincial nation of 50 years ago, when the high protective tariff was the only foreign policy that we needed.

Mr. Lee defended the policy of the American Scantic Line in developing a service between New York and Leningrad with the aid of funds supplied by the government under the terms of the Jones-White Act.  Recent complaints against the transportation of Soviet cargoes by Mooremack ships are based upon a "ridiculous fallacy" since the trade was obtained only after competitive bidding and would have been carried in foreign ships if the Scantic ships were not used.

March 13, 1932

General business depression has resulted in the reduction of sailings of American Scantic ships so this allowed the passenger-cargo vessels which were built at the Hog Island yards shortly after the close of World War I, Bird City, Sagauche, Schenectady, and Chickasaw to be laid up for extensive renovation.  The accommodations for officers and crews will be enlarged and improved, their bridges will be equipped with all modern devices for safety of navigation, including gyro compasses, automatic steering gear and fathometers.  Contracts have been awarded to the Bethlehem Steel Company for strengthening the hulls.  Each ship will have room for 72 passengers, a doctor, steward, hospital, ship's officers and public rooms.  Most of the rooms will accommodate two persons and all of the rooms will have private baths with hot and cold fresh and sea water.

June 2, 1932

New York, Baltimore, and Philadelphia's shipping interests protested against the proposal of the trunk line railroads to add a charge of $1 a ton on all freight arriving by steamship at railroad-owned piers and delivered by trucks to local consignees and to double their charge for storage of freight on their piers.  The plan was conceived by the railroads as a means of meeting the competition of trucking companies for the transportation of freight from the piers on long hauls.  The steamship lines now unload without charge at the piers.

Samuel Aiken, vice president of Moore & McCormack, objected to the plan.  He said the steamship lines were in financial straits as severe as those confronting the railroads and were unable to absorb the extra charge.  Mr. Aiken continued on stating that he believed the railroads were approaching their problem from the wrong angle. 

July 26, 1932

Robert C. Lee, Vice President of Moore & McCormack, Inc., says that in Europe shipping men had come to recognize the fact that the United States is "on the sea to stay" and that foreign shipping interests are actually looking to the United States for leadership in the fight back to normalcy.

For several years, Mr. Lee has favored the idea that an international cartel or pooling arrangement would be good for owners of ships in all trades.

August 25, 1932

Moore & McCormack made an offer to purchase the American Republics Line, owned by the government and operating between Boston, New York, South Atlantic ports and the east coast of South America.  The line is currently operated for the board by C. H. Sprague & Son of Boston, and the shipping board had long sought a purchaser.  The Sprague Company also submitted an offer, which is being considered by the board.  Moore & McCormack is willing to operate the 12 freight ships of the line with a satisfactory frequency of sailings and specified that it was willing to close the deal without the assurance of a contract with the Post Office Department for the transportation of mails.   Moore & McCormack's bid also included an offer to withdraw from the New England field if the Sprague Company agreed to withdraw from New York.  This offer stirred some opposition among New England interests who maintain that Boston was the line's home port.  Moore & McCormack replied that the majority of the freight carried by the American Republics ships is booked from New York and the interests of the line would be served at least as well by a New York company as by the Sprague organization.

November 28, 1932

Robert C. Lee, Vice President of Moore & McCormack, was notified by Chairman T. V. O'Connor of the Shipping Board that the company's application for transfer of four ships from the American Scantic translatlantic service to the coastwise route had been denied.  Mr. O'Connor pointed out that the Board would consider the transfer of the ships a violation of the intent of the contracts due to the ships having been reconditioned with the aid of a government loan and that they were operated with the aid of a government contract to carry mails.  The traffic of the American Scantic Line was quiet during the winter months.

April 19, 1935

A 348-foot Soviet freighter, Kalinin, docked at the foot of Milton Sreet, Brooklyn, with a load of ore and general cargo and with 5 young women among the 34 in her crew.  The ship was the first to arrive from the USSR under an agreement by which Moore & McCormack assumed charge of the Soviet maritime agency in the United States.  Miss Anna Tumanina, 23 years, was third officer of the ship and Miss Tamara Tchernitchenk, 25 years, was assistant engineer.  Miss Tchernitchenk, with pride, showed her large hands with the comment that they had been thus developed by "good, hard work."  Two of the girls, Maria Semenova and Lida Marchuk were stewardesses, and a third, was an assistant in the stewards' department. 

July 20, 1938

Bids were received for a fleet of 13 ships which includes three 20,000 ton luxury cruise ships, California, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, which were recently taken over from the Panama-Pacific Line.  The bidders were C. H. Sprague & Son, Inc., of Boston, which operates the American Republics Line as managing agents for the commission, and Moore & McCormack Company, Inc., of New York City.

Sprague submitted a bid of $16,970 for all 13 vessels, based on $4,000 a month for each liner and $4,970 a month for the 10 cargo ships.  Moore & McCormack submitted four different offers:  Charter of the entire fleet at $36,600 a month; (2) charter of the three liners at $18,600 a month; (3) charter of the three liners at $18,600 a month, substitution of 6 of its own cargo vessels for the same number of Republics cargo ships, and if additional vessels are needed, charter of one to four of Republics ships for $1,800 a month each; or (4) charter of the three liners at $18,600 a month, substitution of six of its own cargo vessels for six of the American Republics Line, and if additional vessels are required in the service, purchase outright of one to four of the remaining vessels at $60,000 apiece.

Letters were also presented to the Commission by H. F. Markwalter of New York, operating agent for the receiver of the Munson Line, and from the Munson Steamship Lines, making a similar offer.  The Munson Line has operated the route for a dozen years.

Rear Admiral Emory S. Land, for the commission, stated the bids were "better than a lot of people predicted and as good as some predicted."

July 22, 1938

Although Moore & McCormack offered the high bid for charter of the three reconditioned Panama Pacific liners and the ten freighters of the American Republics Line, it was reported that C. H. Sprague & Son might obtain the fleet because it is protected by a preference clause in the Merchant Marine Act of 1936, giving operators of government ships the right to meet the high figure of a competing bidder. 

July 31, 1938

Sprague is prepared to meet the terms of the only other bidder, Moore & McCormack, and apply for operation of the Panama Pacific liners and the freighters of the American Republics Line.  Moore & McCormack is already equipped with both freight and passenger staffs and will make necessary adjustments and enlargement of its office personnel.  But the Sprague memo states that the company would "farm out" certain departments of the line.

August 12, 1938

Samuel Aitken, age 58, Vice President of Moore & McCormack, died suddenly of a heart attack while walking to the Whitehall Club, 17 Battery Place, to have luncheon with business associates. He was stricken in the street a short distance from the club building and died before a doctor arrived from the Broad Street Hospital.

Mr. Aitken had joined Moore & McCormack in 1919 and supervised the reconditioning of the American Scantic Line ships. He became Vice President in charge of Operations in 1926 and in that capacity also Vice President of the American Scantic Line, Inc., Gulf Lines, Inc., Mooremack Lines and Mooremack Coastwise Carloading Company. Surviving are his widow and a son.

August 16, 1938

The contract to operate the three Panama Pacific liners, California, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, operated formerly by the Panama Pacific Line, and the ten freighters of the American Republics Line which were operated by  C. H. Sprague & Sons, Inc., was awarded to Moore & McCormack, Inc.  The liners are in dry dock, where renovations costing more than $1,000,000 are being made.  They will make a speed of 18 knots or better and reach Buenos Aires in 18 or 19 days.  Renovations have been carried out that make the ships 100% fireproof, in accordance with Federal regulations. 

The contract with the government permits Moore & McCormack to replace any of the ten freighters with ships that are at least equally fast.  The ships now operated make about ten knots, and it is planned to transfer ships now owned by the company from other services, so that a minimum speed of 13 knots will be available in the South American freight service.

The firm name of Moore & McCormack, Inc. will be changed to Moore-McCormack Lines embracing the new American Republics service and the American Scantic Line service.

August 26, 1938

Rates and schedules of the passenger and freight service between the east costs of North and South America were announced yesterday by Commander Robert C. Lee, Vice President of Moore & McCormack, operator of the service.  The first class cabin seasonal (southbound, Jan. 11-Feb. 28 and June 1-Aug. 14 - northbound, Feb. 1-May 31 and July 16-Sept. 14) rate for the trip to Buenos Aires will be $380, and for the round trip, $550.  The tourist round-trip rate will be $410, and one way $245.  The off-season rate in first class will be $480 for the round trip and $330 for one way.  The cost of deluxe suites will range up to $1,230.  For Rio, the first cabin rate in season will be $520 for round trip and $325 one way, and for off-season $455 for round trip and $285 for one way.  The tourist rate will be $200 one way and $350 for the round trip throughout the year.

Arrangements have been made with other lines for the exchange of passengers and for rate differentials to suit the demands of passengers who may plan to remain in South America for periods of time.  Grace Line is included in the agreements whereby passengers may be taken between Buenos Aires and Valparaiso to travel one way along the eastern coast of South America and the other along the western coast.  Prince Line, which calls at the eastern ports, is also included.

August 28, 1938

James Robinson, South American manager, and William Murchison, head of the South American stevedore operations of Moore & McCormack, arrived in New York from Buenos Aires last week by plane to conduct studies preparatory to the operation of the new American Republics Line service between the east costs of North and South American services. They made a tour of the South American terminals, studying the tidal and other conditions. The ships, formerly the Pennsylvania, California, and Virginia, are the largest American flag ships ever entered in the South American trade and present several problems of berthing. The opening of the service will begin on October 8.

September 8, 1938

The firm of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., was organized.  It will operate the American Scantic Line service to the Baltic Sea and the Mooremack Lines to South America.  The company is an outgrowth of the development of Moore & McCormack.  Albert V. Moore will be President and Emmet J. McCormack will be Treasurer.  The officers are Commander Robert C. Lee, Executive vice President; Captain George Holt, Vice President, and Henry P. Molloy, Vice President and Secretary.  Commander Lee will be the ranking operating officer.  Captain Holt has been assistant to Messrs. Moore and Molloy, secretary and counsel.

September 16, 1938

Morrison Pretz was appointed as general traffic manager of Moore-McCormack Lines. S. J. Mueller and Charles Brockstedt as assistant managers in charge of the traffic departments of the American Scantic and American Republics Lines, respectively, also was announced.

October 4, 1938

1200 hrs.

The Argentina, Brazil, and the Uruguay were formally taken over by the operators today.  Captain Granville Conway, Director of the Maritime Commission in New York, and Robert C. Lee, Executive Vice President of Moore-McCormack Lines, signed the necessary papers.

October 8, 1938

Moore-McCormack Lines operated the American Republics Line under charter for the Maritime Commission.  After January 1, 1939, it operated it for its own account under a contract for three years.

November 13, 1938

A. V. Moore, President of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., announced the company was negotiating with Pan American Airways for a schedule of combination voyages to and from South American ports, in which passengers will travel by sea and air.  This arrangement will shorten the tour for those who cannot spare the necessary 38 days for the whole voyage by sea. 

November 19, 1938

Leo E. Archer has been appointed general passenger traffic manager of Moore-McCormack Lines. Mr. Archer was chosen party because of his experience with the three passenger liners which formerly were operated in the intercoastal run as the Virginia, California, and Pennsylvania under the Panama-Pacific flag. Bookings for these vessels were under Mr. Archer's direction as Pacific Coast passenger chief of the International Mercantile Marine Company. Mr. Archer joined the I.M.M. in 1898 as a clerk in the passenger department in New York, but had experience in freight as well as in the passenger field.

December 31, 1938

The American Republics Line was turned over to Moore & McCormack at midnight.  The company became operators of the Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay.  A. V. Moore, president of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc. stated that operation of the line indicated clearly that the service was considered essential both to the United States and South America.  The American Republics Line had three passenger ships and six 13-knot cargo carriers.  Mr. Moore announced that starting with the sailing of the Uruguay on January 17, ships of the line will call at Barbados southbound, arriving there on the 4th day, and at Rio de Janeiro on the 12th morning.  The ships also will call southbound at Santos, Montevideo and Buenos Aires, and northbound at Santos, Rio de Janeiro and Trinidad.

1939

Eleanor M. Britton began working for Moore-McCormack Lines as a Cruise Director. 

April 3, 1939

M. J. France, counsel for Moore-McCormack Lines, objected to an application for admittance by the Sprague Steamship Agency, Inc. to the United States Maritime Commission for membership in the United States-River Plate-Brazil Conference.  Mr. France stated that the conference was already over-tonnaged.  The Sprague company which formerly operated the American Republics Company to South America was planning to operate a foreign flag service.

September 4, 1939

According to Commander Robert C. Lee, passenger traffic between New York and the east coast of South America is expanding rapidly. This is based on his observations of the passenger lists of the S.S. Brazil, S.S. Uruguay, and the S.S. Argentina. Four weeks ago the S.S. Brazil set a new record with 368 passengers, two weeks later the S.S. Uruguay broke this record with 381 passengers, and this morning the record is again being broken, this time by the S.S. Argentina which is bringing in 426 passengers from Barbados, Rio de Janeiro, Santos, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, and Trinidad. One reason for the growing passenger lists is the attraction of the World's Fair in New York and the Exposition in San Francisco. Ships northbound from South America will continue to carry large passenger lists for the next two months.

November 10, 1939

Robert C. Lee announced that Moore-McCormack's American Scantic Line would resume service to Scandinavian countries tomorrow.  The company decided to try running into the port of Bergen, far north on the Norway coast, just outside the combat zone described by the President.  The Mormactide will leave tomorrow with cargo for its customary Scandinavian consignees.  A second ship, the Mormacport, is scheduled to leave on November 21 for Bergen and will make an additional call at Trondheim.  The ships will pass as far as possible from the combat areas, sailing below Iceland and above the Faroe Islands.

The Scantic Line used to run into the Baltic and as far east as Leningrad, but between the declaration of war and the establishment of the combat areas by the President, the service was partly abandoned, with Leningrad and the mine-surrounded Baltic ports omitted.  This new venture will depend a great deal on the extent of trouble and delay caused by the British contraband control system, which already has held up ships of the company at Kirkwall, Scotland. 

December 26, 1939

Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., took a lease on Pier 32, North River, a modern new terminal owned by New York City and said to be one of the best in the country.  The company will begin using the terminal in February 1940, but the company won't be able to employ it fully until midsummer 1940, due to the construction being completed at a cost of $85,000.  The vessels to use the pier will be the  Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay.  The pier, at the western end of Canal Street,  is 1,020 feet long and 125 feet wide, with a covered structure for 993 feet of its length, on a double level and containing two stories.  The pier was started years ago and was designed for the North German Lloyd Line.

Commander Robert C. Lee, Executive Vice President, said the vessels would handle an average of 30,000 tons of cargo a month on the dock.  The company will continue to use Pier 15, Brooklyn, and Piers B and D in Jersey City.  Because Mooremack is expanding its activities, the line does not intend to release any of these piers.

April 10, 1940

Bids were received today for the chartering of five ships to be operated between California, Washington and Oregon ports and ports in Argentina, Brasil, and Uruguay.  The ships involved in the charter are the City of Flint, Collamar, Independence Hall, and two others to be named later.

April 18, 1940

Robert C. Lee announced that service on the Mooremack Gulf Lines between ports of the Atlantic Coast and the Gulf of Mexico, will be discontinued within 30 days because of a shortage of tonnage.  The company had operated on the route for 17 years and employed as many as 13 vessels in the run at the peak of the trade in 1937.  The withdrawal is temporary and the company would return to the trade as soon as the market for available tonnage improved.  The ships, Southlure, Southfolk, Southland, Southerner, and Commercial Trader, were among 14 sold last fall to the Lloyd Brasileiro, a government-owned steamship concern in Brasil, for operation between Brasilian ports and the United States.  Moore-McCormack was confident that they would be able to replace the vessels, but because of the abnormal situation created by the European war in the shipping market, the company has not been able to replace them. 

May 1940

Moore-McCormack purchased the Pacific Argentine Brazil Line, operating from West Coast ports of the United States to the Panama Canal and East coast ports of South America.

August 5, 1940

When Commander Robert C. Lee arrived in the United States from the S.S. Argentina, he stated that American steamship companies would hold their South American trade no matter what the outcome of the war might be, but that it would be a hard fight.  German competition, he said, was already keen.  Nazi agents were booking orders for the Fall and were giving a 90-day cash delivery guarantee.  By the terms of these guarantees, the Germans agreed to subject themselves to a 20% penalty if they failed to deliver the goods within the specified time.  "The Germans have been maintaining deliveries by Italian ships, but they cannot do it now.  However, there is a widespread belief that Germany will win the war and Latin American countries are placing orders in that belief."

Commander Lee estimated that 80% of the people of Argentina, Brasil, and Uruguay were "violently opposed to Germany."  The remaining 20% ranged from lukewarm to highly enthusiastic.  All of them wanted the United States to arm, for they felt they were in great danger.  "Brazil is in favor of anything the United States wants to do.  She will go along with us.  We are complementary countries.  We need what she produces and she needs what we produce.  Our trade with Brasil can be greatly expanded and we need not worry about competition."

August 10, 1940

Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., arranged to buy from the Maritime Commission three new combination passenger-cargo vessels of the C-3 type for operation by its Pacific Republics Line on the West Coast.  The ships are being built and two are in the final stages having already been launched at the yards of the Moore Drydock Company in Oakland, California.  The third will be launched August 24. 

The first two ships that were purchased were the Sea Star and the Sea Panther, named for famous American vessels of the clipper ship era.  The company will scrap the old names and call the new ships the Mormacstar and the Mormacsea.  The vessels are to be powered by steam and will be 492 feet long, 69 feet in the beam and capable of between 17 and 18 knots speed.  They will weigh 11,000 tons deadweight and will have quarters for about 200 passengers. 

The third vessel will be called the Mormacsun and will be sponsored by Miss Carlotta Sepulveda Chapman of Los Angeles. 

The Mormacsea and Mormacstar will enter service in October and January, and the Mormacsun, late in the Winter.

September 14, 1940

Plans for four new passenger-cargo liners for the South American trade of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc. was announced by Robert C. Lee.  The feature of the new liners will be air-conditioning in all staterooms and public spaces.  The ships will be 492 feet long, 69.5 feet in the beam and weigh 9,800 tons deadweight.  Passenger accommodations will include 20 cabins with private verandas, 22 single rooms and 34 double rooms, a total of 76 cabins.

October 18, 1940

The U.S. Navy is seeking another new ship owned by Moore-McCormack Lines.

November 16, 1940

During a launching reception for the Mormacyork, Emmet J. McCormack, Vice-President, said that when the last of the present construction program is completed by next Spring the concern will have a fleet of ships representing a value of $80,000,000.  He said he and other officials had undertaken an expansion program of this magnitude because they had "great faith" in the future of the United States and its South American commerce.

December 12, 1940

Debutants served as manikins at a Christmas cruise luncheon and fashion show given at Armando's, 54 East 55th Street, for the benefit of the Seamen's Church Institute of New York.  Proceeds from the fete will be added to a fund to provide Christmas dinners for 1,000 merchant seamen at the institute.  The setting was decorated with materials contributed by Moore-McCormack, American Republics, and United Fruit Steamship Lines, which also have made donations to the benefit fund.

January 7, 1941

A large amount of stock to be sold to Kuhn, Loeb & Co. had been arranged by Albert V. Moore and Emmet J. McCormack due to the fact that the bankers had been helpful in developing business.

February 1, 1941

Moore-McCormack cooperated in stimulating teacher and student travel to and from Latin American countries.  The United States Maritime Commission announced a rate reduction of 50% on one-way fares for accredited students and teachers traveling between the United States and South America for those spending one year in study or instruction.  Other known participants are the United Fruit Company, the United States Lines, the Grace Line, and the Mississippi Shipping Company.

February 1941

Officials of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., announced they were planning a long-range campaign in South American countries to increase northbound shipments and improve the trade balances of these countries.  Executive Vice-President, Robert C. Lee, sailed on the S.S. Brazil for Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires to organize traffic for the Summer and lay plans for "the distant future."  He stated, "In my opinion the problem of increasing our normal purchases in Latin America is one of the most important features of our good-neighbor policy."

April 2, 1941

Moore-McCormack reported total assets by the end of 1940 amounted to $24,063,377.

May 20, 1941

The Maritime Commission requisitioned the four unfinished Rio Hudson class combiliners.  Mooremack officials declined comment, referring all questions to the Maritime Commission.  The Commission stated that the four ships would be converted for defense purposes.  America's ally, Britain, stood alone against Nazi Germany and Britain needed the ships to survive.  President Roosevelt approved the "Lend-Lease" of American vessels and the British took over the Rio Hudson class ships and were probably intrigued by their motors.

Moore-McCormack officials deplored the Maritime Commission's move, pointing out that while American steamship companies were thoroughly willing to help defend the nation, inter-American relations were likely to suffer and trade curtailed.

NOTE:  After the War there was talk of a new series of Moore-McCormack Lines combiliners designed by George Sharp.  Nothing ever came of the idea. 

May 22, 1941

At the annual dinner of the Propeller Club, Commander Robert C. Lee said the United States stands today "at the crossroads" that will determine her future existence as a free nation. The country must soon choose whether to follow the path of "sweat and blood" that will assure the preservation of its freedom or the path of "apparent temporary safety" that will lead to eventual defeat by the totalitarian nations. "There is no escaping our destiny. Either we shall lead, and lead into paths that we have found worthwhile, or we shall fall and sink into oblivion because we were not equal to our destiny. Our participation in this war, whatever it may be, is not to save England, but to save ourselves. Let's get on with the job."

June 21, 1941

Moore & McCormack Company, Inc., began operation between Philadelphia and Cork, Dublin and Londenderry.

July 30, 1941

Ten new freighters of Moore-McCormack Lines have been "lost" to the Government.  Moore-McCormack Lines has pointed out on several occasions that they are anxious to cooperate in the Government's defense program, but fear that South American trade relations will suffer if more tonnage were withdrawn or denied to this trade.  Nelson Rockefeller, Coordinator of Cultural and Commercial Relations with the Latin American Republics, also is warning the Government that the friendship and economic relations with Latin American nations are an important factor in American defense.

August 26, 1941

A ship tonnage shortage has developed in the East Coast service as a result of cargo increases and the requisitioning of freighters by the government, therefore, the Collamer, Independence Hall, and City of Flint have been moved from the Pacific Republics Line to operate in the East Coast trade.  The Government has requisitioned about half of the Maritime Commission vessels for the Navy and Army or for assignments vital to national defense.  A few have also been turned over to Great Britain.

October 1941

After researching for the Disney animated film, "Os Três Cabelleros," Walt Disney and some from his team (El Grupo) left on a Grace Lines ship, Santa Clara, leaving from Valparaiso, Chile, on October 4, arriving in New York on October 20.

Director Jack Cutting remained behind in South America, but shipped some records, books, newspapers, and other materials to the studio on the S.S. Brazil.  For this reason, Moore-McCormack was mentioned in the credits at the end of the film. 

Later when the Disney Studio was working on the documentary, "South of the Border with Disney," they needed additional South American footage to supplement the scenes they had shot themselves.  They bought some stock shots from another documentary, "By Air to Argentina," which had been produced by Moore-McCormack.  Mooremack was acknowledged for this in the opening credits of the Disney film, as was National Geographic, which had also provided footage.

December 7, 1941

It was announced today, Nassau is preparing a full program of social and sports activities.  In late December the Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay will include Nassau in the schedule of their southern cruises this winter.

February 22, 1942

Moore-McCormack announced today that the passenger steamers to Brasil and Uruguay have been taken off the South American run due to being requisitioned by the U.S. Government.  The S.S. Argentina was removed some months ago so this means that the River Plate is cut off completely from the United States so far as first-class passenger ships are concerned.

March 13, 1942

The American Scantic Line will spend $1,360,000 in the next 90 days for the reconstruction of four of the 11 ships which it operated between North Atlantic ports and Copenhagen and the Baltic.  The work will be done with the aid of Federal Government funds

March 27, 1942

It was announced that the freight and passenger vessel Puebla, formerly the German transatlantic liner Orinoco, has been leased to Moore-McCormack Lines.  Mooremack will use it in the Atlantic coastwise traffic between the United States and South America, also touching Mexican ports.  The contract is for the duration of the war at $20,000 monthly and the ship will fly the Panamanian flag.

October 5, 1944

Moore-McCormack Lines proposed to enter the aviation field with a 30-hour flight from New York to Buenos Aires and a circle route between New York and Atlantic and Caribbean Islands.  Albert V. Moore told the Civil Aeronautics Board that steamship lines must be allowed to offer coordinated air service to meet competition from American airlines and from shipping concerns operating sea-air service.  He continued to state that Moore-McCormack might be forced to withdraw three luxury liners from service to the east cost of South America if a second airline to that area is authorized and his company is not allowed to operate air service.

July 27, 1945

Moore-McCormack Lines filed a petition in Washington asking for a rehearing on the Civil Aeronautics Board's ("CAB") recent award to American Export Airlines and American Airlines of the air route through Scandinavia and the Baltic to Moscow.  The petition stated that CAB made its decision "without pleadings or proof" from either of the recipient air companies, and in disregard of Moore-McCormack, long-time ship operators to the Baltic region.  The Board is requested to review the denial of this route to Moore-McCormack.

"This action has practically nullified the purpose and intention of the Merchant Marine Act of 1936 and of the United States Maritime Commission."  The CAB decision made American Export Lines, through its air affiliate, a competitor of Moore-McCormack Lines, in the route assigned to the latter by the Maritime Commission.

1945

During World War II, Moore-McCormack Lines operated more than 150 ships, lost 11 vessels, transported 754,239 troops, and carried 34,410,111 tons of war cargo.

January 1946

It was announced that Moore-McCormack Lines will have routes to the East Coast of South America, to Norway, Sweden and Finland.  The company will build and operate two large express liners to be constructed by the Maritime Commission in the South American trade.  They will carry 600 passengers each and have speeds of 25 to 28 knots.  For the Scandinavian service, Mooremack plans to use a few passenger-cargo vessels.

February 19, 1946

Walter T. Moore has been appointed a director of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc. and re-elected Vice President. A lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army, he returned last week from the Pacific theater of war.

March 27, 1946

In an annual report to its shareholders it was stated Moore-McCormack returned more than 219,512 troops to the United States since V-E Day and completed 500 voyages in 1945 as agents of the War Shipping Administration.  In addition, vast quantities of vital food and fuel are continuing to be delivered to the stricken areas of Europe and elsewhere. 

Commercial service was re-established on the South American and Scandinavian routes in 1945 and 44 vessels are now in the company's regular liner berth service.  The rest of the fleet will be returned to private operation in the next few months and will replace an equivalent number of vessels now operated to the Government on an agency basis.  The offices in Copenhagen, Oslo, and Stockholm have been reopened to handle the American Scantic service.  Resumption of passenger service to the east coast of South America is expected late next summer or early in the fall.

March 30, 1946

Due to a post-war shortage of passenger ships to move business travelers, Moore-McCormack Lines acted as ticket agent for nearly 900 passengers on the Swedish liner GripsholmThe Gripsholm, departed New York for Le Havre and Scandinavian ports where she will be turned back to the Swedish-American line.  During the war, the Gripsholm and her Swedish crew had many voyages to succor from prison and hospitals thousands of civilians and sick and wounded combatants whom she carried safely to their homes again. 

April 4, 1946

Several Mooremack vessels have been assigned to transport United States citizens stranded abroad and foreign nationalists waiting under the immigration quota system.  On outbound voyages, the vessels will carry replacement troops and civilian passengers.  Passage will be restricted to necessary passengers, most of whom probably will be businessmen.

The ships involved are the S.S. Argentina which leaves on April 13 to Southampton; Marine Tiger and Robin Line leave on April 17 to Cape Town, South Africa, and the Marine Lynx leaves from San Francisco to Australia and New Zealand.  On April 18 the Marine Flasher will leave to Bremen, Oslo and Gothenburg.  On April 20, the Uruguay and Marine Perch will leave to Bremen, Oslo and Gothenburg.

May 1946

Due to tax claims made by the Government against construction funds deposited with the Maritime Commission by Moore-McCormack, it was decided to cancel the building of the two medium sized, 200-passenger vessels for its American Scantic Line run to Scandinavia.  The rest of Moore-McCormack's building program is to have two large, fast passenger liners built for the South American route.

The three passenger ships, Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay are to be reconverted for peacetime operation to east coast South American ports.

May 22, 1946

The Civil Aeronautics Board rejected applications of steamship companies to operate scheduled air flights in conjunction with surface routes.

May 28, 1946

Eleven shipping companies joined in the maritime industry's campaign to break the Civil Aeronautics Board ("CAB") opposition to correlated sea-air transport.  American shipping lines have contended before CAB that the United States Government was favoring foreign lines by failing to insist on their meeting the same requirements of "public convenience and necessity" as are applied to American companies seeking air certificates.  CAB denied applications of four steamship companies, Grace Line, Moore-McCormack, Waterman and Atlantic Gulf and West Indies Lines, for air-routes in Latin American waters in conjunction with their surface routes. 

June 15, 1946

Moore-McCormack Lines predicted that travel to the east coast of South America and the Caribbean, in the first full post-war travel year, would be divided three to one between air and surface.  Air operators in subsequent years would nibble away more and more of the trade, hauling four times the sea trade by the fifth year, they believe.

July 1946

President Truman recommended to the United States Maritime Commission that plans for construction of two Moore-McCormack luxury liners to serve the South American trade routes were to be held in abeyance for at least a year.  The ships, each to exceed 700 feet in length and to have accommodations for 550 passengers, were destined for operation on routes to the east coast of South America.  The ships were to be constructed entirely with government funds and would be chartered to Moore-McCormack Lines for operation.  The ships would cost $34,800,000 and their annual operating loss is estimated at $2,800,000.  Shortage of materials was a reason for delaying the construction of the ships.  Material for ship construction was still in acutely short supply and substantial naval construction was still in progress.  The shipyards had a large volume of reconversion and repair work to do.

In the meantime, the Commission would re-examine the entire project with a view to reducing the heavy burden upon the taxpayers of both construction costs and anticipated operating deficits.

July 3, 1946

Two Moore-McCormack ships caused the Lines' passenger backlog to take a drop with two sailings today.  The Marine Marlin will depart from Pier 7, Bush Docks, Brooklyn and will make the South American voyage.  The Marine Perch, from Pier 95, North River, will go to Europe.  Both ships are C-4 type vessels.

The Marlin's departure is taking more than 300 passengers to Argentina and Brasil and marks the first large passenger movement to that area since before the war.  She will then leave South America, stopping at Caribbean ports en route, for Bremen, returning German undesirables, internees, and prisoners of war.

August 1946

During the first week of August a reunion of the Moore-McCormack liners Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay took place when the Argentina arrived in New York from Le Havre and Southampton with 498 passengers.  It was the first time in several years that the three sister ships had come together in one port.

Captain Thomas Simmons, master of the Argentina, recalled that they had been together in the convoy that participated in the invasion of Oran in November 1942.  Before that the three liners lay for 77 days off Gourock, Scotland, at the mouth of the Clyde River, until the order to join the Africa-bound convoy was received.

November 1, 1946

Albert V. Moore and his wife left on the Mormacisle for east coast ports of South America. Mr. Moore hopes to arrange the resumption of the "Good Neighbor Fleet" passenger service, and to review the possibilities of expanding Mooremack's facilities to offer a cargo service of maximum effectiveness.

January 1, 1947

Resumption of Government operating-differential subsidies was announced by the United States Maritime Commission.  Subsidies were suspended when America entered World War II.  They intend to enable American operators to compete on essential trade routes with foreign countries whose operating costs are lower.  Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc. was one of 12 steamship companies affected.

March 20, 1947

Robert C. Lee, Executive Vice President, returned from Scandinavia saying that tourists who plan to visit Europe would be wise to wait a year if the trip is not a necessary trip abroad. Travel and hotel accommodations were so bad everywhere that tourists will "get the shock of their lives." "They'd better stay at home," he added. Traveling on the Norde Express, Mr. Lee said the train he took from Stockholm on his way to Paris was 15 hours late on a 12-hour run, and that there was no light, no food, and no heat. "In the middle of the night we had to get out at a border for inspection and to have our money counted," he declared. "The world over there is topsy-turvy, and everyone is mentally dazed."

Three things affecting the Swedish economy, he added, were the extreme Leftist bearing of the Government, the Russian situation, and the "over-optimistic buying by importers, who have taken more than the country can absorb."

The American Scantic Line is operating 20 freighters in the Scandinavian service and there is no present plan to extend the service to Poland or Russia, as before the war. Due to the unsettled conditions and the doubtful future, the plan for building passenger ships for this route has been indefinitely postponed.

April 18, 1947

Robert C. Lee stated that port congestion in South America and ice in the Baltic Sea are keeping 39 Moore-McCormack vessels immobilized.  Three vessels has been "frozen in" in the Baltic for more than two months and eight others are waiting for the ice to break up so they can enter ports and discharge cargoes.  28 ships are waiting in South American ports to unload.  The congestion is due to the fact that South American countries are attempting to handle "1945 ships at 1845 docks."  Mr. Lee further remarked that it was futile to load a new, fast ship, send her to a South American port at high speed, then watch her "stand in line" for weeks or even months to get to a pier.  He estimated that the 39 "non-working" ships were costing the company $2,000 a day each.

Increased wages don't tempt men who refuse to work because they feel there's nothing they can buy with it.  Mr. Lee thinks that perhaps it's just post-war reaction, but it's not good for the people, nor is it a healthy condition for the maritime industry.

May 24, 1947

Lack of adequate quarters on ships holds back thousands of women working on ships.  Robert C. Lee, executive vice president of Moore-McCormack Lines, explained that his company had "reluctantly given up the idea only after a thorough investigation" of having women on board their ships.  The company considered using waitresses on the "Good Neighbor" ships, but the lack of segregated crew quarters had dictated abandonment of the idea.  Mr. Lee predicted that new vessels to be built will probably be so constructed that women may be employed in the crew in increased numbers.

August 1947

The return to service of the Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay has been delayed by a strike by 67,000 union members employed in 19 major yards.  The Argentina should have left on her first post-war passenger voyage on July 25, but is awaiting completion of her reconversion at the Bethlehem yard in Brooklyn.  She had booked more than 500 passengers.  The Brazil is in the Atlantic Basin Iron Works yard in Brooklyn which has caused a suspension of her reconditioning.  The Uruguay is under repair at a Todd graving dock in Brooklyn, but she is to return to United States Steel's Federal yard in Kearny, New Jersey, for completion of her reconversion.

November 8, 1947

The 136-day old strike of 22,000 shipyard workers in the Atlantic Coast yards of the Bethlehem Company was settled today with the granting, among other things, of a 12 cent-an-hour wage increase, which raises the base pay of hourly workers from $1.38 to $1.50. 

The return to work means immediate resumption of reconversion work on the S.S. Argentina which still had about one month's work to be done when the strike started.

December 1, 1947

A two-for-one split of the common stock of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., was approved and became effective today.

December 12, 1947

Moore-McCormack Lines purchased the five-story office and warehouse building at 59-61 Barrow Street through to 25 Commerce Street, in the Greenwich Village area in a cash deal negotiation.  Moore-McCormack intends to use the building as an auxiliary office and warehouse for its expanding steamship passenger service department.

December 31, 1947

91 ships sailed under the Moore-McCormack flag this year.

March 1948

The net profits of Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc., for the 12 months ended December 31, 1947, were $9,145,080 after federal income taxes.  Net profits for the preceding year were $3,771,285.

The Company's fleet in service during 1947 was 31 vessels, which would soon be increased to 34 upon the delivery of three additional C-3 type vessels purchased from the Maritime Commission. 

Stockholders were also notified that a proposed increase in the authorized shares of  common stock from 1,000,000 of $10 par value to 2,000,000 shares of $5 par.  This would involve a split-up on a two-for-one basis.

All the outstanding preferred stock has been called for redemption at the close of business on December 31 at $53.125, representing $52.50 a share plus the 62-1/2 cent dividend accrued to that date.

July 1948

Commodore Robert C. Lee, Executive Vice President of Moore-McCormack, on his return from a tour of South American offices, announced that the company has decided to make permanent a new freight run 1,000 miles up the Amazon River to Manaus, Brasil.  Mr. Lee said the service would permit the tapping of hitherto untouched and rich resources of mahogany, sorba gum, snake skins, hides, Brasil nuts and other products.

Mr. Lee said, "Development of the Amazon territory is now possible, because tropical diseases are being controlled and rough roads are being constructed into the jungle to bring out the area's products."  Mr. Lee also said five freighters will be used in the service and that passenger ships may be added next year.

July 22, 1948

An offer to invest $20,000,000 as Mooremack's share of the cost of building two large, fast passenger liners for operation in the New York-East Coast of South America service was announced by Albert V. Moore, President of Moore-McCormack Lines.  The offer was submitted to the Maritime Commission at a conference in Washington, D.C.  The two ships proposed would cost an estimated $50,000,000 to $60,000,000.  Details of the new vessels were not announced, but two years ago the Maritime Commission asked bids for vessels for the South American route that would be capable of speeds of 28 knots.

The proposed liners would operate to ports in Brasil, Uruguay, and Argentina over a route now served on a fortnightly basis by Mooremack's three liners recently reconverted after war service.

Moore-McCormack is one of the largest owners and operators of American-flag shipping which has three services--the American Republics Line, operating between the Atlantic Coast and the East Cost of South America; the Pacific Republics Line, linking California with East Coast South America, and the American Scantic Line operating from New York to Scandinavia.

September 20, 1948

Moore-McCormack revised its plans for construction of new liner tonnage for the New York-South American route.  The project is tentative, but Moore-McCormack notified the U.S. Maritime Commission of intention to build new vessels.  Originally, discussion was held regarding large, fast liners, but Mr. McCormack said the plans now under consideration are for 20-knot ships with capacity for 300 passengers and 5,000 tons of cargo each.  Mr. McCormack added that consummation of the project would depend upon agreement with the Commission on construction and operating differentials.

Many shipping men as well as Government shipping authorities are questioning the wisdom of building luxurious 28-knot ships for the South American run.  Slower vessels, with relatively large cargo capacity, are receiving more consideration in the Government agency's study.

Mooremack operates under charter from the Government the three Good Neighbor passenger liners.  After war service the liners were rebuilt at high cost and shipping experts considered the vessels to be among the most expensive, from the operating standpoint, of any in the merchant marine.

The Maritime Commission's discussions with Moore-McCormack are part of a wide program involving various lines that are planning or already are committed to construction.  The Commission's drive to get new ships under way is in line with a shipbuilding revival program urged on Congress by President Truman and by military and naval authorities.

May 31, 1949

Captain George M. Auten, 78 years old, Assistant Secretary of Moore-McCormack Lines, died this afternoon in the Methodist Hospital, Brooklyn. He had joined Moore-McCormack in 1914. Captain Auten was devoted to the sea and seafaring activities, including ship chandlery, dredging, stevedoring, terminal operations, and the early management of the Brooklyn and Richmond ferry. Beginning in the 1890s and continuing until the outbreak of World War I, Captain Auten specialized in the outfitting of steam and sailing yachts in the U.S. and abroad.

July 1949

An expansion program concerning the "Good Neighbor" liners Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay will now call at Port of Spain, Trinidad, on their southbound voyages as well as northbound.  This will enable the line to offer an 11-day cruise to Trinidad with passengers sailing on one liner and returning on another. 

The passenger rates for the entire South American service will be revised to separate the cost of shore excursions and Buenos Aires hotel accommodations from the basic cruise rate.  The ships will now serve as the passengers' hotel throughout the trip, which can now be made for as low as $990 in first cabin, compared to the previous $1,165.

Another new feature involves a combination sea and air itinerary Mooremack arranged in cooperation with Pan American Airways and Pan American-Grace.

August 27, 1949

Scandinavian countries are hungry for American materials.  Mr. Robert C. Lee returned from a month's visit to Mooremack's offices in Scandinavia.  The eight ships that maintain regular service to Scandinavia contain 12 passenger cabins each and they could easily be filled, but once they arrive in Scandinavia there is not enough room for the tourists.  Scandinavia needs dollars.  Mr. Lee stated that it is impossible to do shipping business with their Scandinavian colleagues during the summer months.  They only have about 60 days of good sun and they don't want any interference with their vacations.  Mr. Lee stated that "No one wants to talk business.  They just close down factories and offices and go away."

October 31, 1949

Captains Harry N. Sadler and Thomas M. Simmons have been commissioned captains in the United States Naval Reserve in recognition of their wartime service. Captain Sadler of the S.S. Brazil and Captain Simmons of the S.S. Argentina have been in command of the vessels since 1938, stayed with their ships during the war, and did not enter the Navy on active duty.

Moore-McCormack Lines is the only company to have the non-military service of two of its masters during the war recognized in the form of promotions to captain by the Navy.

February 21, 1950

Public bids were invited for the bareboat charter of the three "Good Neighbor" vessels with the proviso that the successful bidder must eventually replace the ships, Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay, with new passenger tonnage.  The Maritime Commission extended the present charters on the three ships from May 8 to October 31.  Mooremack applied for resumption of the operating subsidy for the three ships last fall after a wartime suspension of such payments.  C. W. Robinson, Maritime Commissioner trial examiner, upheld one of the six points of contention submitted by Mooremack in support of its application.  It regarded Mooremack's claim that passengers carried by foreign-flag cargo vessels in the same trade route constituted competition for the "Good Neighbor" ships.  Mooremack took issue with this report and following an appeal in January, the Commission heard oral arguments in the case. 

The vessels originally were chartered by Mooremack in 1938, on a five-year basis.  When released from wartime transport service, the vessels were overhauled and returned to Mooremack in 1947 for completion of the unexpired time of the charters.

April 6, 1950

The Argentine State Line may make a bid for the New York-Buenos Aires passenger traffic which has been served almost exclusively since the war by Mooremack's Good Neighbor Fleet.  The company launched three new modern passenger liners, the Rio de la Plata, the Rio Tunuyan, and the Rio Jachal.

April 15, 1950

The Maritime Commission approved the application of Moore-McCormack Lines for the resumption of an operating differential subsidy on the three "Good Neighbor Fleet" liners.  The order makes the re-established subsidy retroactive to May 8, 1949.  Passenger carryings of foreign flag cargo vessels and of certain cruise ships in the route constituted foreign competition and that an operating subsidy was necessary to meet this competition.

April 21, 1950

New bids to charter the Good Neighbor Fleet were opened today.  The Maritime Administration said the new charter hire bids "shall not be less" than the amount of a bid previously made by Moore-McCormack but rejected for technical reasons as being "not responsive" to that invitation for bids.

April 22, 1950

Mooremack will seek to renew its charter operation of the Good Neighbor Fleet.  The service is labeled Essential Trade Route No. 1 in the Commission's post-war plan for merchant marine development, and the next contract will stipulate, as a term of the bidding, that the three passenger liners must be replaced.  Mooremack held construction discussions with the Commission and has plans and specifications for new ships.   

Mr. Moore stated, "We subscribe to the Government's idea that the fleet must be replaced, and with ships that will do credit to the nation in this most important trade route.  The country cannot afford to have less than the best in this route.  Through the Good Neighbor Fleet, which was a conception of the late President Roosevelt, we as a nation have made an important place for ourselves in the South American market."

Mooremack's three passenger vessels and their own freighters carried 89.4 percent of all travel business on Trade Route 1.  Mr. Moore expressed that the foreign-flag freighters and the foreign cruise liners paralleling Mooremack's route in whole or in part do mean real competition, in that they tend to take the "cream" of the cruise trade in sufficient numbers to spell the difference between a year's profitable operation and one of loss.  When Mooremack began its charter period in 1938, an imposing fleet of first-class foreign vessels under the Italian and German flags, maintained regular services to the east coast of South American from European ports.  Mr. Moore stated that they definitely contributed to the tendency of South America to look toward Europe.  He added that European nations were now beginning to return to this trade and that the United States must maintain superior tonnage in the route to meet this additional competition.

He continued, "Regardless of whether we are the successful bidders this year, this is a vital service to this country.  It must be maintained, whether by us or someone else.  It is a national asset."

May 26, 1950

Emmet J. McCormack stated that the tramp shipping industry as it has been known in the last half-century is a dying enterprise. He believes that the American merchant fleet, now rapidly declining in size from the abnormal post-war volume, will shrink still further, leveling off at a point determined by Government subsidies permitting parity with low-cost foreign competition.

Mr. McCormack continued to state that England, the outstanding developer of tramp shipping, is already moving in another direction. There has been much said in recent months, including the shipping hearings at Washington, about preserving tramp shipping by paying subsidies to it. Even if they get a subsidy they will not be able to compete with low-cost foreign competition.

On the future of the American merchant marine, Mr. McCormack said he did not believe that the common carrier of tomorrow, under the American flag with its costly and unmatched safety standards and its high operating costs, could compete without subsidies. The character and size of the United States flag fleet would be determined almost exactly by the extent to which the nation wished to subsidize, for trade security and for national security.

June 1, 1950

Moore-McCormack submitted the only bid to the Maritime Administration for chartering the three passenger ships.  Mooremack offered a monthly hire of $22,000 a vessel.  A bid of $20,000 a month ago was rejected.

October 31, 1950

Mooremack agreed to build two new 23-knot passenger liners for its New York-South American service.  The proposal to construct the new vessels was a requirement of a chartering agreement by the Maritime Administration.  Mooremack was the only concern to file a bid, offering a charter rate of $20,000 a month for each of the vessels now in operation, an increase from $10,865 a month. 

The period of the charter is to extend until completion of the voyage in progress at the time the replacement vessels are delivered but is not to exceed four years.

November 12, 1950

Plans for the two fast new liners for the route between New York and South America will be pressed as rapidly as possible, calling for the start of construction early next summer.  Mooremack pledged to construct two 23,000 gross ton luxury ships with a speed of 23 knots.  The ships would be 647 feet long, 88 feet in the beam and capable of making 20 round-trip voyages a year. 

The officials who built Mooremack into one of the largest under the American flag, expressed the opinion that the passenger-carrying potential in the South American trade had not been approached, and that given adequate tonnage of the right type, the trade between the continents would be vastly expanded.   Mr. Moore stated, "Our new ships will have space for about 700 passengers in two classes ... They will have room for 496 persons in first class and 220 in cabin ...."

April 12, 1951

The Federal Maritime Board rejected the bid for Mooremack's operation of the Government-owned "Good Neighbor Fleet" liners.  Mooremack will bid again when a new invitation for bids would be returnable on June 1.  Rejection was made after the General Accounting Office studied the bid and criticized it.  The G.A.O. ruled "that the bidder's offer in so far as the bonding requirements were concerned was not in strict compliance with the terms of the invitation."  When Mooremack made its bid, the bond requirement was $4,500,000.  Under the bidding now in prospect, a $250,000 bond "guaranteeing compliance with all stipulations imposed by the board" must be furnished.  The reduction in the amount indicated that the G.A.O. was concerned chiefly with the form or wording of the bond.

April 20, 1951

Sea commerce was severed when the Government of Poland barred the American Scantic Line from the Communist-dominated port of Gdynia.  Poland also withdrew the passenger liner Batory from her North Atlantic run.  This is in retaliation to the restrictive security measures applied to the Batory since the escape of Gerhart Eisler, who secretly fled homeward on the liner two years ago.   Poland complained of "a deliberate iron curtain policy pursued by the Government of the United States," and charged that the Batory and her personnel were harassed on every voyage to New York.  Custom officials have held the Batory at the entrance of the harbor for intensive searches, ostensibly for atomic weapons or other means of sabotage.  Squads of guards have been maintained on the ship and at her pier during her presence in the port.

Moore-McCormack has several American citizens employed in its Polish office and is concerned about getting them back to the United States.  The company was responsible for the building of the Port of Gdynia as a rival to Danzig which was dominated in the 1920s by Germany.  The company put up money for the first terminal structures more than 20 years ago and Mooremack took a leading role in the next two decades in building up Poland's export business.

July 1, 1951

The Maritime Administration accepted the bid of Moore-McCormack Lines to operate the steamships, Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay under charter from New York City to the East Coast of South America.  Moore-McCormack's charter expired yesterday.  Charter fees were $22,000 a month for each of the three vessels and construction of two new ships will be started when required by the Maritime Administration.

August 16, 1951

Poland's ban against Moore-McCormack in Poland's territorial waters was lifted.  A ban had been imposed by Poland due to a retaliatory move for the barring of the Gdynia America liner Batory from New York piers last March.  The ban against the Batory was lifted a few weeks after it was imposed.  It was Mr. McCormack's belief that the Batory had been withdrawn for better business abroad and that the liner would probably not return to New York. 

November 18, 1951

Moore-McCormack started a large-scale refurbishing of the three ocean liner vessels.  32 staterooms and 2 suite, on the B decks are to be redesigned without removing the ships from operation.  Plans for the staterooms call for installation of toilets and showers.  New fixtures, rugs and furniture will be added to the rooms.  With the heavy demand for space to South America this winter, it was decided to rush the renovation work. 

June 2, 1951

Moore-McCormack Lines is unable to go ahead with construction of the two new passenger liners plans because of the inability of the Federal Maritime Administration to negotiate a firm contract.  "No shipowner can afford to build a new ship in the present state of uncertainty," Robert C. Lee said.  "You never know when you've got a contract.  It seems to me there will be nothing in the way of new building until the air clears."  The Maritime Administration started with certain assumptions on the price a steamship company would pay for a ship and the amount of subsidy the Government would grant for special defense features.  But anyone in Government, Mr. Lee asserted, can say later that the cost assumption was wrong.

March 1952

Operations during the year 1951 resulted in a record net profit of $10,148,000 of which $7,600,000 represents tax-deferred deposits made in reserve funds chiefly for investment in new and replacement ships.  During the year, 35 owned cargo vessels and the three Good Neighbor vessels of Moore-McCormack Lines completed 183 voyages and carried 2,920,000 tons of cargo.  The Good Neighbor vessels carried 20,939 passengers.  Mr. Moore stated the earnings will unlikely continue at the present high level because he anticipates some decline of foreign exchange difficulties in some of the countries served.

January 8, 1953

Mr. Albert V. Moore visited Mr. and Mrs. Emmet J. McCormack aboard the S.S. Argentina at 1700 hrs. before the ship departed.  Mr. Moore passed away at 2300 hrs. that evening at his home in 65 Tennis Place in Forrest Hills, Queens, New York.

March 29, 1953

Charles T. Mattman, formerly a special representative in Moore-McCormack's local and South American offices, was named to the post of Assistant Vice President. S. J. Mueller was made head of the company's operations to South America; John F. Sand, was placed in charge of Scandinavian operations, and R. Bruce Wallace was put in charge of conferences and rates.

September 10, 1955

The United States Federal Maritime Board decided that the Federal Government should contribute about $20,000,000 toward the cost of building two new passenger liners for Moore-McCormack Lines.  The best bid came from a United States yard, Ingalls, at $24,444,181 per ship.

November 13, 1955

The monthly report of the Shipbuilders Council of America listed contracts for two new Moore-McCormack Lines passenger vessels.  It was the first time in more than five years that an order for a passenger liner had been placed in the USA.  The ships will be 617 feet long, with a speed of 21 knots.  They will have a gross tonnage of 18,200 and will carry 553 passengers each, in one class.  The Government will pay about $20,000,000 toward their construction for differential and national defense features.

July 6, 1956

The first keel components were joined today of a new $25,000,000 liner, yet to be named (S.S. Brasil).  This was the first step in a $313,000,000 ship construction program pledged by Moore-McCormack.  It is the first liner ever specially designed for the American-flag route to the East Coast of South America.  Rear Admiral Robert C. Lee, Vice-Chairman of Moore-McCormack, drove the first rivet joining an inner-bottom assembly section to the heavy steel keel plate.  By nightfall the entire bottom section was in place.

December 9, 1957

Today, the S.S. Brazil was replaced by the Excambion.  The Excambion had been scheduled to sail for the Mediterranean on December 13.  Passengers booked for this trip were accommodated on three similar ships operated by American Export Lines or on that company's luxury liners, the Constitution and Independence.  American Export Lines said it was able to offer the Excambion for charter because of current light demand for passenger space to the Near East and because the company has three similar ships on the run.

December 23, 1960

Captain Jesse R. Hodges passes away.

April 25, 1961

Joseph A. Medernach, who has been with the company since 1930, was promoted to the post of Vice President of Moore-McCormack Lines. Mr. Medernach had been Assistant Vice President and will continue as assistant to the President.

Other promotions were Anthony C. Visceglia from Assistant Vice President in charge of Finance to Vice President for Finance. Hubert F. Carr who was Assistant Secretary, is now Secretary of the company.

April 24, 1962

Robert C. Lee, Chairman, and George L. Holt, Executive Vice President, retired from Moore-McCormack Lines. Both men will continue as directors. Mr. Lee joined the company in 1920 as a vice president, and Mr. Holt had been with the company since 1926.

The board elected William T. Moore to succeed Mr. Lee. He will also retain the title of President and Chief Executive Officer.

February 1965

Moore and McCormack Company, Inc., was formed this month as a holding company to allow diversification. 

February 24, 1965

At the age of 84 years, Emmett J. McCormack passed away at Good Samaritan Hospital in West Palm Beach, Florida.  He had been ill for some time and wintered in Florida.  His permanent home overlooked the Narrows at 9411 Shore Road, Brooklyn.

February 1966

Captain Harry N. Sadler passes away.

April 27, 1966

Grace Line and Moore-McCormack Lines have concluded there is only room for one of them to provide service from the West Coast of South America and the Caribbean.  The Maritime Administration was asked to approve the sale of the Pacific Republics Line to Grace for $5.7 million.  Pacific Republics Line operates six C-3 type freighters on two essential foreign trade routes—Pacific ports to Caribbean and the East Coast of Mexico ports, and Pacific ports to ports on the East Coast of South America.  Under the terms of the proposed contract, Grace would acquire the six Moore-McCormack ships, the Pacific Republics name, good will and trade route.

June 12, 1966

William T. Moore, at the Senate Merchant Marine subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee, urged that recapitalization of the financial structure is needed for the American merchant marine.  Such a step is advisable to enhance the profitability of the shipping operations.  Mr. Moore further stated that for the last 12 years profits by the subsidized segment of the American merchant marine had yielded the lowers returns on capital of any sector of American industry.

June 30, 1969

Joseph A. Medernach, a vice president and assistant to William T. Moore, chairman and president, announced his retirement effective today.  He joined Moore-McCormack in 1930 and served in Central and Eastern Europe until the outbreak of World War II.  He headed the company's trade development bureau until wartime service as chief of the air transport division of the Foreign Economic Administration.  After the war he returned to reorganize the trade development bureau and play an active part in inter-American affairs and international trade committees.  He was named assistant vice president in charge of advertising and public relations in 1957 and a vice president in 1961. 

He and his wife plan to retire to a home they are building in Camino Gardens, Boca Raton, Florida.

March 27, 1970

Commodore Thomas N. Simmons, first Commodore of Moore-McCormack Lines' fleet, died today at the age of 74 in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.  Commodore Simmons joined Mooremack in 1938 to take command of the old Argentina on her first voyage to South America.  During WWII, he continued to command his ship while she was in military garb as a troop carrier.  After the war, he and the Argentina went back into the South American cruise trade until the Argentina was retired in August of 1958.  When the new luxury liner Brasil made her maiden voyage in 1958, Commodore Simmons was on the bridge.  He retired in 1963.  Commodore Simmons was decorated by the Government of Brasil with the National Order of the Southern Cross in 1963.  He is survived by his wife, Enid May, 6 children, and 18 grandchildren.

November 16, 1970

The City Investing Company (a diversified company whose interests include real estate and land development, mobile homes, manufacturing and insurance), which owns 16% of the outstanding common shares of the Moore & McCormack Company, Inc., announced that it expanded its holding in the shipping company to 26%.  City Investing purchased 227,400 common shares of Moore & McCormack, but declined to say what it paid for the shares.  It acquired its original holdings in Moore & McCormack in 1968.

Moore & McCormack closed on the New York Stock Exchange up 7/8 at 12.

April 14, 1971

The Moore & McCormack Company, Inc., elected James R. Barker, chairman and chief executive officer of the company and its subsidiary, Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc.  Mr. Barker is succeeding William T. Moore, chairman of Moore & McCormack since 1965 and Moore-McCormack Lines since 1962, who is becoming chairman of the executive committee.  Mr. Barker was executive vice president of Temple, Barker & Sloane, Inc., transportation consultants.

September 1, 1971

Rear Admiral Robert C. Lee died at his home in Beekman Hotel, New York, after a long illness for several years.  During World War I Admiral Lee served on the U.S.S. Arizona, then on destroyer duty in the Bay of Biscay, and as United States Naval Port Officer at Nantes, France.  He resigned from the Navy in 1920 in order to enter the Moore-McCormack organization.   Later he was recalled to active duty in World War II as special assistant to the Chief of Naval Transportation Services.  While serving on various assignments.  He also served in Honolulu and London where he was General Eisenhower's Navy representative in the Normandy invasion. 

Admiral Lee was also instrumental in promoting the importance of the American Merchant Marine and was a member of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers and the Maritime Exchange.  He also served for three consecutive terms as national president of the Propeller Club of the United States. 

He is survived by his widow, the former Elsie Calder, daughter of the late Senator William Calder of New York, three daughters and a son, a sister, 12 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Admiral Lee was buried at Arlington National Cemetery on September 3.

December 21, 1972

Moore & McCormack Company announced that it agreed in principle to purchase substantially all of the assets and to assume substantially all of the liabilities of Pickands Mather & Co. for more than $60 million.  Payment will be made in cash, short-term notes and senior preferred stock.  A proposed closing will be on or before April 1, 1973; approval by Moore & McCormack stockholders will be requested as soon as possible.

In 1971 Moore & McCormack had net income of $2,114,000 on sales of $56,386,000.  For the first nine months of this year, the company needed $4,044,000 on sales of $40,501,000.

April 7, 1976

William Talman Moore, 62 (son of Albert V. Moore), former chairman and president of Moore-McCormack Resources, Inc., died in Community Hospital, Glen Cove, Long Island, following a heart attack.    He joined Moore-McCormack in 1935 and spent his entire business career with the Moore-McCormack Lines which is now a major subsidiary of Moore McCormack Resources, Inc.

Mr. Moore was credited with raising the shipping concern to a top position in the American merchant marine.  In 1957 he was instrumental in acquiring the Robin Line, which expanded the operations of the company to take in South and East Africa and Indian Ocean islands.  He directed the reorganization of the company in March 1965 so that the parent organization could engage in non-shipping activities.  In 1971 he was named chairman of the executive committee of Moore & McCormack, which became Moore McCormack Resources in 1974.  He was named chairman of the audit committee in 1975.

In 1959 the American Legion gave him its Distinguished Service Medal, and in 1959 Brasil awarded him the Order of the Southern Cross with the degree of commander.  He is survived by his wife, the former Jean Campbell, a son, William T. Moore, Jr., a sister, Barbara Mattman, and four grandchildren.

May 14, 1978

William Talman Moore, Jr., 41 (son of William T. Moore), was killed today in an automobile collision near his home in Minter City, Mississippi.  Mr. Moore had resided on the family plantation, Equen, which he had managed.  In the late 1960s he was vice president of Moore-McCormack Lines, which was founded by his grandfather, Albert V. Moore.  He resigned Moore-McCormack in 1969.

Mr. Moore, like his father, was a prize-winning yachtsman.  He competed in major sailing events from both coasts, including the Olympic Sailing Class, in which he was among the skippers represented the United States in the British-American team cup races.

Survivors are his wife, the former Caroline Roosevelt, four daughters, his mother, Fae Equen Rhodes, of Equen, two sisters, a brother, and his grandmother, Mrs. Albert V. Moore of New York, and his stepmother, Mrs. William T. Moore, Sr., of Oyster Bay.

December 1982

As the popularizer of container services, McLean was judged the ideal person to handle the transition to containers in the African and South American routes; after quick discussion, Malcolm McLean purchased the fleet and routes of Moore-McCormack in December 1982

November 1985

Moore-McCormack Lines was the first in the projected series of American shipping company reunions to be held at the American Merchant Marine Museum at Kings Point on Long Island Sound.  Among the captains reminiscing were Charles W. Spear, master of the Liberty ship, Henry Miller, and Otto Heitmann, master of another Liberty ship, John Bascom.   Both captains were on their respective ships during WWII when the ships were struck by the enemy.  Also attending were Eleanor Britton and a singer on the S.S. Brasil, Nan Garcia Hicks.  Other attendees included cooks, engineers, pursers, cruise directors, radio operators, seagoers and shoreside personnel.  Victor E. Kelly and his wife, Anne, who met on board the S.S. Argentina also attended the reunion.  Mr. Kelly was chief baker on the ship and he believed that he was the first black to achieve that post on a large liner. See photo of the Moore-McCormack reunion at Kings Point. (Photo courtesy of Captain Harold Vanderploeg)


   
   

The CompanyOcean LinersCargo LinersInformationGuest BookE-Mail UsHOME