RMS Victorian

RMS Victorian was the World's first turbine-powered ocean liner. She was designed as a transatlantic liner and mail ship for Allan Line and launched in 1904.

Victorian was built in Ireland. She had a sister ship, Virginian, which was built in Scotland and launched four months later.

Throughout the First World War Victorian was an armed merchant cruiser (AMC). In 1918 she also carried cargo and troops.

In 1920 she returned to civilian service with the Canadian Pacific Steamship Company, but in 1921 the British Government chartered her as a troop ship. In 1922 Canadian Pacific renamed her Marloch. She was scrapped in 1929 after a quarter of a century of successful service.

Contents

Background

Charles Parsons had demonstrated the speed of his marine steam turbines in Turbinia launched in 1894 and their reliability in the Clyde excursion steamer King Edward launched in 1901. But King Edward's fuel costs were higher than those of her reciprocating-engined and as a result so were her fares. Passengers accepted the higher cost on King Edward's day trips down the Clyde, but ocean liner companies did not know whether passengers, cargo customers and post offices would accept the higher cost on Atlantic crossings lasting several days.

Canadian Pacific entered the North Atlantic Trade by buying Elder Dempster Lines' Beaver Line subsidiary early in 1903. Allan Line responded by ordering a pair of new express liners. Allan Line originally planned to order conventional twin-screw ships with reciprocating steam engines, but in October 1903 it announced that it had ordered a pair of ships with turbines driving three screws as on King Edward.

On 28 January 1904, seven months before Victorian was launched, the Government of Canada announced it had awarded Allan Line a transatlantic mail contract. Four Allan Line ships were to provide a re... ...read more

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