Baltic-American Line Fleet and Services - 1920
SS Latvia, Polonia, Lituania, and Estonia
PEACE at last. Disarmament is more than a theory. Since the cessation of hostilities, distinct instructive progress has been made by the world. The evils left by the war are rapidly becoming localized and isolated, or have completely disappeared.
Work is now the slogan in every European country -- Cannons and swords are hammered into plowshares, automobiles and sewing machines--Factories are working full blast -- New Trade connections are being established--Yet Europe is vastly different.
Even old, seasoned travelers who have "done" Northern Europe year after year in pre-war times will find great changes wherever they go today: Empires are dismembered -- Provinces have changed rulers -- New nations and independent small republics have sprung up.
Free cities have again come into existence, all destined to become great vehicles for commerce and industry. While the entire face of Central Europe has changed, some old customs have been resurrected. The "Leipziger Messe" is in full swing, bigger than ever.
The "Passion Play" at Oberammergau, as an embodiment of simple old world faith and piety, after an enforced period of twelve years dormancy, will again be produced.
Railway travel in Europe, including dining and sleeping car service is practically back to normal.
Hotels, many with the same luxurious appointments of our great hotels, are prepared to take good care of their guests, and best of all, owing to the low rate of exchange, expenses figured in American Dollars are exceedingly low.
Truly today is a day of travel opportunity. The American Tourist seeking rest, recreation, study or new business connections in Europe can therefore not find a more opportune time to go than during next summer, using all the exceptional facilities offered by the "BALTIC-AMERICA LINE," which combines the four paramount factors: -- "SERVICE" "ACCOMMODATIONS" "SPEED" "RATES"
THE Service of the Baltic-American Line is maintained by four modern twin-screw passenger steamers :-- "Latvia," -PoIonia,- "Lituania," "Estonia," embodying in their construction all improvements of merit and being equalled in point of safety, comfort, sanitary and practical appointments, only by the very best equipped steamships of today.
Only recently all steamers of the Baltic-American Line have been furnished with the newly invented Gyroscope Compasses, securing the highest degree of safety for navigation also in foggy weather.
The ports served by the steamers of the Baltic-American Line are:
- NEW YORK -- Terminal port in the U. S.
- HAMBURG -- Port of call in Germany.
- DANZIG -- Free City, port of call for passengers desiring to return to the United States from Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Roumania, and other states in Central Europe.
- LIBAU -- Terminal port for the Baltic States (Latvia, Esthonia, Lithuania) and Russia.
- HALIFAX -- Port of call for Canada.
A glance at the map will show that this route is equally convenient for travelers bound for Great Britain, France or Central Europe, as Hamburg is the favorite gateway for travel to London, Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Prague, Warsaw, Budapest and other principal cities of Europe.
RATES -- The rates in effect in the First and Second Cabin on the Steamers "Lituania" and "Estonia" and the Cabin Rates on the Steamers "Latvia" and "Polonia," will also without any doubt appeal to the traveling public, to whom a tour of Europe is most valuable in a business and educational way, and who do not feel justified in spending much money solely for the trip across the ocean.
The service of the Baltic-American Line will appeal especially to doctors, instructors, lecturers, artists and other professional people who go to Europe annually and who prefer to spend less on travel without giving up any of the comforts.
SERVICE AND CUISINE
The service of the Baltic-American Line is of the highest order. It is entrusted to able and experienced "Chefs," assisted by a corps of well trained stewards and stewardesses, with whom courtesy and willingness are prime qualifications. The cuisine and table has a most enviable reputation for its excellence and variety. It provides the best which the markets of both Europe and America afford.
SATISFACTION -- Unsolicited testimonials, expressing gratitude and satisfaction with accommodations, excellence and lavishness of table, and courteous treatment, signed by hundreds of passengers who traveled on our steamers are the best proof and eloquent endorsement of the service of the Baltic-American Line.
ON the following pages the Baltic-America ' Line takes pleasure in giving a short description of each steamer, hoping thereby to convey a somewhat adequate idea of the splendid accommodations at the disposal of the passengers.
Photograph 7a: S. S. Latvia
The steamer "Latvia," built by Barclay, Curle & Co. of Glasgow, Scotland, is entirely of steel, 475 feet long, 57 feet wide and 41 feet from keel to upper deck.
This steamer embodies all the latest improvements in shipbuilding, and all modern services for the safety and comfort of travelers by sea, including cellular double bottom, bilge keels, wireless telegraphy, mechanical ventilation, gyroscope compasses, etc.
All the staterooms on the bridge deck are large outside, light rooms. These rooms have mostly two berths (one upper and one lower) and a sofa; and can accommodate two or three passengers and some cabins four passengers.
Photograph 7b: S. S. Polonia
Forward of the staterooms on the promenade deck is the elegantly equipped dining room; and on the upper promenade deck music and smoking rooms.
The steamer "Polonia" is similar in type to the well-known steamer "Latvia." This steamer, called "The Queen of the Baltic Sea" offers the same comfort and luxury for which the line is renowned.
The cabin passengers' accommodations are situated amidships and extend over two decks, namely: the promenade and bridge decks. The dining room, extending the full width of the ship, is exquisitely furnished.
Photograph 8: S. S. Lituania
Throughout all sections light and ventilation have been provided according to the most advanced ideas. The following will describe the size, construction and technical equipment of this steamer: The length is 450 feet, beam 58 feet and height from keel to upper deck 38 feet.
The steamship "Lituania," as well as her sister ship "Estonia," were built by Barclay, Curle & Co. at Glasgow, Scotland, and all the latest improvements in shipbuilding have been incorporated in these steamers.
Photograph 9: Cabin Dining Room -- Steamers Polonia and Latvia
On their trial trips, made in the presence of expert engineers, shipbuilders and representatives of the English Lloyds, they received the highest certificate of commendation from these representatives.
Four hundred twenty-five feet in length, these vessels are identical in dimensions and internal equipment -- each has been provided with the same safety devices, as well as commodious staterooms.
Steadiness in rough weather is secured by the use of large bilge keels. Wireess telegraph devices, equipped for both short and long distance work, keep the ships in touch with the world on both shores of the Atlantic and with sister ships upon the sea. It is by the use of this device that the Company obtains news matter which is edited and printed upon each ship during the voyage.
Photograph 10: First-class Dining Room -- Steamers Estonia and Lituania
The staterooms of the "Lituania" and "Estonia" were designed with one idea -- the comfort of the passengers, and therefore, even the second class rooms on both steamers are located directly amidships on the promenade and main deck.
Both vessels have earned for themselves an enviable reputation for steadiness and general comfort.
In addition the Baltic-American Line has exerted every effort to make travel on all steamers as safe as possible. They are equipped with submarine bell signals, double cellular bottoms, water-tight compartments, gyroscope compasses and carry a sufficient number of lifeboats and life preservers to provide for the entire number of passengers and crew.
Photograph 12: First-class Ladies' Salon and Music Room -- Steamers Polonia and Latvia
INDEPENDENT TRAVEL TOURS DURING NEXT SUMMER SEASON
Cabin reservations and registration for tourist parties to Europe during the coming spring and summer season predicate a very heavy travel and cabin accommodations should, therefore, be made as far in advance as possible in order to avoid disappointment and inconvenience.
Photograph 11a: Main Stairway
Conditions in Europe are now better than at any time since the war.
Photograph 11b: Smoking and Card Room -- Steamers Estonia and Lituania
Traveling in Central Europe is now just as comfortable as before the war.
There are dining and international sleeping cars on most of the routes. Hotel accommodations in all principal European cities are first class. The embargo on tourist travel to foreign countries is being gradually lifted, and last but not least the low rate of foreign exchange, figured in American dollars, will induce many Americans to consider a trip to Europe as a well-planned.
Route Map of the Baltic-American Line (1920s)
The total expenses, for steamship tickets, first class railroad fares, hotel accommodations with three meals daily, and state and luxury gratuities, will amount to only an average of $10.00 per day. If the tour is carefully planned and arranged beforehand all travel trouble is eliminated.
While a number of travelers prefer escorted tours, there are a great number of tourists who will desire to travel by themselves rather than as members of an associated party.
Photograph 13: First Cabin Stateroom
It is for the independent tourists that the Baltic-American Line compiled a few tentative two-month tours, the cost of which, including steamship tickets, first class rail and hotel accommodations in first class houses, including meals, and state and luxury gratuities are as follows:
TOUR No. 1 -- $575.00
- Visiting: Hamburg, Berlin, Leipzig, Dresden, Prague, Vienna, Cracow, Warsaw, Danzig.
- All expenses, including first class accommodations on the steamer, Round trip, $575.00.
TOUR No. 2 -- $585.00
- Visiting: Hamburg, Bremen, Cologne, Frankfort, Prague, Cracow, Warsaw, Danzig.
- All expenses, including first class accommodations on the steamer, Round trip, $585.00.
TOUR No. 3 -- $600.00
- Visiting: Hamburg, Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Lemberg, Cracow, Warsaw, Danzig.
- All expenses, including first class accommodations on the steamer, Round trip, $600.00.
- The same tour, 3 months duration, Round trip, $700.00.
TOUR No. 4 -- $575.00
- Visiting: Hamburg, Bremen, Frankfort, Nuremberg, Munich, Leipzig, Berlin and Danzig.
- All expenses, including first class accommodations on the steamer, Round trip, $575.00.
All these rates are based on the present rate of exchange on German marks and, therefore, they are subject to fluctuation.
It will be noticed that our suggested tours have Hamburg as a starting point and Danzig, a city well worth a visit as will be seen in a more detailed description further on in our pamphlet, as a returning point.
In addition to the possibility of returning via Danzig, prospective first and second class passengers may also return with our steamer from Copenhagen, which undoubtedly will be of great interest for tourists, as this city is one of the most beautiful and interesting capitals of Europe.
Photograph 14: Second Cabin Stateroom
Photograph 15a: Promenade Deck
Our offices abroad are prepared to assist travelers whenever called upon, and guides with education and experience, able to disseminate information, speaking English in addition to the native language can be supplied for parties.
Photograph 15b: Boat Deck
From Danzig connection can also be made by steamers of our Anglo-Baltic Line Service maintaining regular weekly sailings to and from London.
AMERICAN BAPTIST FOREIGN MISSION SOCIETY
276 Fifth Avenue
Cable Address: "TAVOYAM, NEW YORK"
February 23, 1922.
Passenger Department 9 Broadway,
New York City.
On November 23, I sailed from New York to Europe on your Steamship "Estonia" commanded by Captain H. K. Christensen. It gives me pleasure to inform you that except for the stormy weather, over which you had no control, I found everything on this ship satisfactory.
The cabin accommodations were comfortable and the meals were excellent. Throughout the voyage I was impressed with the evident intention of the officers and the crew to keep every part of the ship scrupulously clean. This voyage will long remain in my memory as one of the delightful experiences of my life.
I wish to say a personal word about Captain Christensen. I found him to be one of the most interesting men I have ever known, always solicitous as to my comfort and welfare, and always ready to show me every possible courtesy. It was such a pleasure traveling with him, that the next time I go to Europe I shall do everything possible to arrange my trip in such a way as to cross on whatever ship he may be commanding.
Under separate cover I am sending you copies of recent issues of our Baptist publication, in which I have described some of my experiences on this voyage. You will remember that we sent on the "Estonia" 1400 bales of clothing and other relief supplies and more than 100 barrels of soap for distribution in Poland, Latvia, Estonia and Russia. These were discharged respectively at Danzig and at Libau.
Very truly yours,
WILLIAM LIPPHARD, Associate Secretary
NEW-YORKER STAATS ZEITUNG UND HEROLD
22.24 No. William Street
NEW YORK CITY
February 24th, 1922
Mr. Max Straus, Pres.,
Baltic-American Line, Inc.
New York City.
My Dear Mr. Straus,
It gives me great pleasure to tell you that I have received from my nephew, Mr. Oscar Wintrab, sailing on your S. S. Lituania, December 21st to Hamburg, a letter, in which he states that he enjoyed this trip during the winter time and it was the most pleasant trip he ever had on his way to Europe. Not only did he receive wonderful treatment from the Captain and Officers but that this ship was the best he ever travelled on.
The food preparing, service and all the other comforts gave him such pleasure that his Christmas Holiday and New Year's Eve was the greatest joy for him and all the passengers with him.
The ship sailed for ten days and arrived at Hamburg on New Year's Day. He also writes me that there never was more thankfulness and acknowledgment of a good treatment and one of the most pleasant trips that he and the passengers ever had on this great steady steamer between New York and Hamburg.
ON BOARD S. S. "LITUANIA"
Leipzig 4 Januar 1922
Sehr geehrter Herr Straus:
Die erste Gelegenheit zu schreiben ergreife ich heute um unser Versprechen gemaess Ihnen von unserer Weihnachtsreise mit der "LITUANIA" zu berichten. Wir koennen nur das Schoenste und Beste sagen die Reise verflog trotz des unguenstigen Wetters so schnell, dass wir fast bedauert haben am I Januar in Cuxhaven das gastliche Schiff zu verlassen.
Die Kost und die Bedienung waren ausgezeichnet und wir haetten die erstere mehr genossen wenn wir vom hohen Seegang nicht ab und su mitgenommen worden waeren. Unsere kleine Reisegesellschaft war aber so nett dass wir im Uebrigen reichlich entschaedigt waren.
In erster Linie aber durch die liebenswuerdigste Gast freundschaft der Herren Kapitän, Ingenieur, Doctor, Zahlmeister und ersten Officiere die alle miteinander wetteifert haben um uns uneren Aufenthalt auf dem Dampfer angenehm und freundlich zu gestalten. So verlebten wir Weihnachts und Sylvesterabend so angenehm und gemütlich wie es nur uberhaupt denkbar ist und glauben an den Herren Officieren rechte Freunde gewonnen zu haben.
H Wir hatten am vorletzten Tage Gelegenheit gehabt die ganze Einrichtung des Schiffes zu besichtigen alle Betriebe und alle Klassen und wir hörten überall nur Lob und die sympathischesten Aeusserungen uber unseren lieben Kapitan.
Bitte wenn die Herren am Ende des Monats wieder in New York Sie besuchen unsere besten Grusse auszurichten und nehmen Sie, Herr Strauss unseren besten Dank und herzliche Grüsse entgegen von Ihren.
ergebenen Reisenden auf der "Lituania”
Elisabeth und Sandor Vas (Pianist)
Emil Talmany (Violin Virtuos)
English Translation of German Text for Testimonial # 3:
Dear Mr. Straus:
The first opportunity to write, I rise today to our promise to you according to our Christmas trip with the "LITUANIA" to report. We can only the best and most beautiful say the trip flew despite the unfavorable weather so fast that we almost regrets I have at Cuxhaven January in the hospitality ship to leave.
The food and service were excellent and we had the former enjoyed more if we are not of high waves and su had been taken. Our little tour company was so nice that we in the rest were ample compensation.
First and foremost, but by the gracious hospitality of the men's captain, engineer, doctor, purser and first Officier which vies with each other all around us have undesirable stay on the steamboat pleasant and friendly. So we [verlebten] Christmas and New Year's Eve dinner as pleasant and comfortable as it is conceivable only [uberhaupt] and believe in the right Officier gentlemen friends to have won.
H We had an opportunity on the penultimate day had the entire body of the ship to inspect all farms and all classes and everywhere we heard only praise and the most pleasant comments about our love Kapitan.
Ask if the gentlemen at the end of the month again in New York you visit our best Grusse out and take you, Mr. Strauss our sincere thanks and cordial greetings from your opposite.
humble traveler on the "Lituania"