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Clip #: TFA-45G
Library: TFA Network
Region: South Pacific
Country: United States
Subject: Ocean Liners
Lurline at sea with smaller boats alongside, kids swimming alongside, coming into dock, dockside, passengers waiting to disembark, coming down ramp
Lurline was launched on July 18 1932. On December 27 1932, Lurline left San Francisco for her maiden voyage bound for Sydney Australia, and other Pacific ports, she returned to the San Francisco on 24 April 1934. After her Pacific voyage, she, together with her older sister the Malolo, was placed on the popular San Francisco to Honolulu service. On 7 December 1941, whilst the Lurline was approximately half way from Honolulu to San Francisco, the Japanese air force bombed Pearl Harbour. She set her engines at maximum speed for San Francisco. However, in a convoy with her two sisters, she returned to Hawaii, laden with troops and much needed supplies.
She proudly continued her wartime service, including visits to Australia. She even transported Prime Minister (Australian) John Curtin to America to meet with President Roosevelt.
Mid 1946 the Lurline was returned to Matson Lines, and underwent and extensive refit at Alameda, during 1947/8. Estimated costs were $US 20 million. On April 15 1948, the Lurline resumed her San Francisco to Honolulu service. As prior the war, the Lurline was christened the Pacific Ocean�s top liner. During her career, she was also used a film set for the "Ma and Pa Kettle Go To Hawaii" movie. In 1950, due to incredible success of Laconia, it was decided to also refit her sister ship, the Monterey, which was renamed Matsonia. From this point, both liners now provided only a first class only service between the States and Hawaii. From time to time, cruises were also undertaken. However, as with ships around the world Jet airliners became a serious competition and caused passenger loadings to fall. Matsonia was laid up in September 1962.
On February 3, 1963, Lurline arrived in Los Angeles with serious engine trouble in her port turbine. Matson decided to place her on the market, the repairs were considered too excessive. With the decline of the Lurline, Matson brought the Matsonia out of the mothballs, and, characteristically, changed her name to Lurline, as this name was loved by all. The original Lurline was sold to Chandris Lines in 1963
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