- She was launched by Britain’s Cunard Line in 1914. This is the same company that owned the Lusitania. Unfortunately, her maiden voyage in May 1914 was overshadowed by tragedy. On May 29th, the R.M.S. Empress of Ireland sank with a loss of over 1,000 people. As if that weren’t enough, the next month, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated, and World War I began.
- After the Titanic disaster, the Aquitania became one of the first ships to carry lifeboats for all passengers and crew.
- The Aquitania was 1 ½ times the size of her sister ships, the Lusitania and the Mauretania, which were among the fastest ships on the Atlantic at the time.
- 901 feet long, she was about 20 feet longer than the Titanic but weighed about 7,000 tons less.
- She was the only Pre-1914 ship to serve as a troop ship for the entire duration of World War II.
- Some considered the Aquitania the most popular ship on the transatlantic run, which must be true to some degree if she was able to hang on until 1950. By then, commercial air travel had supplanted steamers as the preferred method of crossing the Atlantic.
Source: Credo Reference, Ships of the Line encyclopedia