S. S. Ultonia
1898 - 1917
  • Gross Tonnage - 8,845
  • Dimensions - length 500ft x beam 57.4ft
  • Number of funnels - 1
  • Number of masts - 4
  • Construction - Steel
  • Propulsion - Twin-screw
  • Engines - Six-cylindered triple-expansion
  • Service speed - 13 knots
  • Builder - Swan & Hunter, Wallsend-on-Tyne (engines by Sir C.Furness, Westgarth & C0.Ltd., Middlesbrough)
  • Originally built as a cargo steamer for the Cunard Steamship Company.
  • Launch date - 4 June 1898
  • Passenger accommodation - none initially, but accommodation for 675 3rd class passengers was later added.
  • The Ultonia was originally launched as a cargo steamer for the cattle trade. After a period of trials, it sailed from the Tyne to Boston on October 28, 1898.

    At the start of 1899, it was converted to accommodate 675 3rd class passengers. Its first voyage as a passenger ship was on 28 February from Liverpool to Boston, via Queenstown. The Ultonia continued to run this service until 9 February 1904.

    In 1904 the ship underwent a further conversion which increased the gross tonnage to 10,402 and altered the passenger accommodation to allow for 120 2nd class passengers and 2,100 3rd class passengers. This was to cater for the emigrant trade.

    On April 29, 1904, she made her maiden voyage since the conversion from Trieste to Fiume to Naples and then on to New York. This service was maintained until October 31, 1911.

    In April 1912 it briefly served the Southampton to Montreal route before returning to the Trieste-New York route. On 7th Dec.1912 she resumed New York - Trieste sailings and started her final voyage from Trieste to Fiume, Naples and New York on June 28, 1914.

    Between 1915-1916 she made several voyages between New York and St.Nazaire.

    In August 1914 the Ultonia was the means by which some of the 'Old Contemptibles' were brought from Malta to England, it then proceeded to India with territorial troops.

    It subsequently returned to the company's service and was finally sunk in June 1917, being was torpedoed by German submarine U53. At the time it was eastward bound and about 350 miles west from Land's End. The Ultonia sank in 10 minutes but fortunately it was being escorted by a 'Q boat', which picked up the crew and landed them at Falmouth. One man was killed during the operation of leaving the ship.

    ~ Cunard Steamship Company ~

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