This Week in History
The Ship has come in!
|For the week of Monday July 13, 1998
On July 17, 1840 the paddle steamer Britannia arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia, 12 days after leaving Liverpool, England. The ship then went on to Boston, Massachusetts, completing the new Liverpool–Halifax–Boston mail route in 14 days and 8 hours. This was the first scheduled transatlantic mail service by steamship, a blow to the "Age of Sail" and the start of the Cunard Line, which would thrive until the era of the jumbo jet.
In 1839, Cunard and several associates established the British and North American Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, which soon became known as the Cunard Line. Cunard won an Admiralty contract to provide a fixed schedule service to carry the Liverpool-Halifax-Boston mail. The first Cunard ship sailed in May 1840, and Britannia made her historic mail run two months later.
For his commercial empire of shipping, banking, lumber, land and coal, Sir Samuel Cunard is recognized by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada as a person of national historic significance. He is commemorated by a plaque in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
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