by Michael Gallagher, Miles Cowsill and Richard Tennant
A very readable yet detailed account of the famous liner’s last voyage to Long Beach in California.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2018
RMS Queen Mary
£28.50

THE FINAL VOYAGE
by Michael Gallagher, Miles Cowsill and Richard Tennant
A very readable yet detailed account of the famous liner’s last voyage to Long Beach in California.

THE FINAL VOYAGE
by Michael Gallagher, Miles Cowsill and Richard Tennant

Richard Tennant, the son-in-law of the final Master of the RMS Queen Mary, has, with Cunard’s recently retired historian, Michael Gallagher, with Miles Cowsill - the proprietor of Lily Publications - produced a very readable yet detailed account of the famous liner’s last voyage to Long Beach in California. That epic voyage, taking the ship away from the Atlantic for the first time, and around Cape Horn, was made over 50 years ago. Built by John Brown in 1936, the Queen Mary’s service as a hotel and resort has way exceeded her remarkable thirty years at sea in peace and war. Her delivery was delayed by recession in the aftermath of the 1929 Wall Street crash and resumed after UK government assurances in return for Cunard agreeing to take over White Star Line. It’s a credit to the editors to bring together so much detailed material from so long ago, including fascinating accounts of various crew members and passengers. The book is largely comprised of seven extracts from the diaries and photo albums of the 806 crew and 1,093 passengers who set off from Southampton in October 1967. A complete list of the non-USA resident passengers is provided. Funnily enough – and there’s plenty of humour in this book – one account is entitled: Round Cape Horn on a bus…alluding to the two red double-deckers that were lashed to the after-deck – with the passengers delighting in rounding Cape Horn on a London bus.
The book is well illustrated with fine resolution colour and b&w photogaphs (some 200 in total) and copies of typical paper memorabilia including the Log of Voyage No. 516 – ‘the Last Great Cruise’, tickets, menus, and programmes featuring Johnny Mathis and the many other entertainers during the Queen’s 39-day voyage. The publication has a good introductory chapter by Michael Gallagher concerned with the construction and delivery of the ship – and her valiant service during WW II ferrying US servicemen and supplies across the Atlantic – and being able to outrun the U-boats by virtue of her 28.5 knots’ service speed. In fact, the Americans were just as proud of the Queen as the British; 94% of passengers on the final voyage came from the US.
The latter pages of the book provide interesting data and information including the crew details, short biographies of the entertainers, ships’ fares, closing with fine gallery of colour photographs of the Queen as she is today, compiled by Miles Cowsill.

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