Sunday, May 18, 2014

SATURNIA and VULCANIA in post cards

Of all the magnificent Italian transatlantic passenger liners of the twentieth century, I would say the motor sisterships SATURNIA and VULCANIA were by far the more sucessful.
When built in the late 1920s they were the largest and fastest passenger motorships in the world. 
Both were constructed in the Adriatic for the famous Triestre based Cosulich Line, and they were followed by two smaller sisters with similar magical names, the NEPTUNIA and OCEANIA, but this later more modern pair did not get the same luck as the previous pair, and both were torpedoed on the same day (18 September 1941) in the Mediterranean by a British submarine (HMS UPHOLDER) during World War Two.
SATURNIA and VULCANIA joinned the Italian Line fleet in 1937 but remained based in Trieste until the end of their Italian days in 1965 when both were replaced by the famous sisters MICHELANGELO and RAFFAELLO, the final North Atlantic twins to enter service, in 1965, and too late actually as they only lasted for 10 years in active service.
Of the North American service, SATURNIA and VULCANIA were also the Italian Line ships more frequently seen in the Portuguese ports, mainly Lisbon and Ponta Delgada.
They survived the WW2 that proved fatal to most other great Italian Line passenger ships and had another two decades of regular service becoming the late grand old ladies of the Mediterranean -New York service. 
SATURNIA was scrapped in Italy in 1965 but sister VULCANIA had a reprieve and was sold by Italia to Siosa Line and sailed as CARIBIA until September 1972 and was broken up in Taiwan in 1974. I remember very well both ships in Lisbon, they were quite a sight.
Texto e imagens /Text and images copyright L.M.Correia. Favor não piratear. Respeite o meu trabalho / No piracy, please. For other posts and images, check our archive at the right column of the main page. Click on the photos to see them enlarged. Thanks for your visit and comments. Luís Miguel Correia
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