Mooremack Names Simmons First "Commodore"
Captain Thomas Simmons has been promoted to the rank of commodore by Board action, it was announced by E. J. McCormack, Chairman of
Commodore Simmons is master of Brasil, which just completed her maiden voyage to South America.
Commodore Simmons is the first Mooremack master to hold that rank in the 45-year history of the company. Commenting on that fact,
Mr. McCormack pointed out that "our company has had an unusual growth in recent years, both from the standpoint of regions of the world we serve and number of ships that fly the Mooremack house flag. Naming our senior
passenger-ship master the lines first commodore takes cognizance of this growth."
Commodore Simmons, a seafaring man for 47 years, has been with Mooremack for the past 20 years. He was master of Argentina
on her first voyage to South America in 1938. When the passenger vessels were withdrawn due to World War II, he continued in command while she served as a troop ship. After the war, he sailed her again, in South American cruise
service, until she was retired earlier this month.
Second in command of Brasil is Captain
Robert H. Bradsell, as staff
captain, Mr. McCormack said. Captain Bradsell, 45, is a graduate of the New York State Maritime Academy. He has been with Mooremack since 1944 and in his career has been master of more
than 20 of the company’s cargo ships. He has also been relief master on now retired Argentina and Brazil.
Commodore Simmons has 13 grandchildren. "They are a lively gang, and give me a lot of relaxation," he says. The commodore looks
the part of a long-time sea-going master. He carries himself with an erectness many a younger man would envy. Pictures of his staff on the Brasil appear below.”
On New Ocean Queen
Deep in the Brasil are Denny-Brown stabilizers, installed at a cost of about $400,000, ready to go into action should the
luxury cruise ship encounter rough weather and begin to roll.
The Denny-Brown equipment was tailor-made for Brasil, and she and her sister ship, Argentina, whose maiden voyage is
scheduled for December 12, are the first American-flag ships designed from the outset to use this equipment, developed and perfected in World War II.
Push-button science, in the case of Brasil, works like this: The master on the bridge casts an appraising eye over the surface of the sea and decides to use the stabilizers; he pushes a button and so
flashes a signal, "START STABILIZERS," on a control panel down below in a compartment where the stabilizers are installed; an engineer throws switches activating motors powering the stabilizers and small gyroscopes which control
the action; the engineer then signals the master, "STABILIZERS READY"; the master pushes another button and the stabilizers project out into the sea, and their action begins. All this takes about two minutes.
When not in action, the stabilizers are withdrawn into their water-tight compartment. They perform an important function. They
are built in such a way that when rolling occurs, the forward velocity of the ship causes the water to exert an upward force on the fin on the descending side of the ship, and a downward force on the fin on the ascending side.
The fins are properly angled to produce the most efficient smoothing action by the small gyroscopes which, through a system of electrical and hydraulic relays, automatically operate the fins' mechanisms.
Even though Brasil and Argentina are 617-foot ships, the stabilizers, when fully extended, reach out into the ocean
only 13 feet and they are only 6 feet 6 inches wide. Their effectiveness is so great, however, that they will reduce the roll of the ship from 30 degrees to less than 3 degrees, according to their designers.
"The Brasil and the Argentina will be in service on what is perhaps the smoothest long distance voyage in the world,"
according to Admiral Robert C. Lee, Mooremack’s vice chairman of the board who is in charge of the lines' new-ships construction program. "We did not have stabilizers on the ships that are being replaced by the new Brasil
and Argentina, and our passengers almost universally found that this voyage is smooth and sunny. But our new ships stress luxury. On a really luxurious cruise, any chance of our passengers experiencing distressing
symptoms through the ship’s roll must be minimized. Therefore we have installed the stabilizers on a run that might occasion their use two days out of the 31-day voyage."
The Denny-Brown stabilizers for the Brasil and the Argentina were built, over a 12-month period, at the Lidgerwood
Manufacturing Company plant in Superior, Wisconsin. Several weeks were required for installation when the ships were under construction at the Ingalls Shipbuilding Corporation yards in Pascagoula, Miss. These stabilizers also
enable the ship to proceed in rough weather without time without time loss.