Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Aboard the Passenger Steamer COLUMBUS in 1934

A recent gift to the Museum consists of passenger steamship ephemera of different types of materials including menus from various passenger lines from the first half of the 20th century. This illustration of a menu cover is, oddly enough, from a Mediterranean cruise in February of 1934 aboard the Norddeutscher Lloyd steamer COLUMBUS. A small selection of the delectables available at lunch included Eggs Lukullus, “Frizzled” Smoked Beef, Braised Oxtail, Semolina Crullers and Bel Paese cheese. Norddeutscher Lloyd graphics (and luncheons!) were some of the most creative and colorful of the steamship lines.

Menu, Norddeutscher Lloyd ship COLUMBUS, 1934.

The COLUMBUS was the second ship of that name built for NDL in the 20th century. The first was handed over to Great Britain after World War I and renamed HOMERIC. This, the second COLUMBUS, was begun as a sister ship to the first and when she was finished being constructed after the War, she was allowed to stay in German hands. She had originally been called HINDENBURG but was renamed COLUMBUS in 1922. During a cruise in 1939 she landed her passengers in Havana because of the outbreak of war. While attempting to return to Germany she was overtaken by the British destroyer HYPERION, and instead of surrendering to the British, her captain burned and sank her. It was an ignominious end to a beautiful ship.

Postcard of Steamer COLUMBUS, Norddeutscher Lloyd.
Mystic Seaport accession number 1951.1776
Originally from the collection of the
Steamship Historical Society of America

This link to a previously cataloged ephemera collection  is a listing of some of the other steamships and lines represented in the collections at Mystic Seaport.

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