RMS Baltic III

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RMS Baltic III liner launched in 1903, history and image.

CLASS

LINER

LAUNCHED

NOVEMBER 21st 1903

BUILT

HARLAND & WOLFF / BELFAST / IRELAND

WEIGHT

23,876 TONS

LENGTH

729 FEET

WIDTH

75 FEET

SPEED

16 KNOTS - PISTON ENGINES - TWO PROPELLERS

The White Star Line designed Baltic to be the largest ship in the world. For this liner to exceed the 21,035-tons of her sister ship Cedric, she was fitted with an extra 29-foot midsection. Baltic set out on her maiden voyage from Liverpool - New York June 29th 1904. She struggled to maintain the White Star Line’s leisurely-recommended speed of 16 knots on that crossing as the extra weight proved too much for her engines. This led to Baltic being returned to Harland & Wolff to have more powerful engines installed. On January 23rd 1909, Baltic’s newly installed communication equipment picked up a message stating the liners Republic and Florida had collided 64 miles from her position. With this being the first time the Marconi system had been used in an emergency, it was soon proved a complete success as Baltic reached the accident site within a few hours and rescued passengers from both ships.

RMS Baltic III liner image

On April 14th 1912, a wireless message was sent from Baltic warning the following liner Titanic they had encountered heavy pack ice off the American coast. The failure of Titanic’s crew to respond to the warning led to one of the world’s greatest maritime disasters.

The British Admiralty requisitioned Baltic to serve as a troopship at the outbreak of World War One. On one trooping voyage in 1917, she had a lucky escape after torpedoes fired from the German submarine UC-66 failed to find their target. Emerging from that attack unscathed allowed Baltic to continue transporting US troops to Europe until the end of the war.

After Baltic’s interiors had been restored, the White Star Line re-deployed her on the Liverpool - New York run December 12th 1918. She was again called to rescue passengers in 1929, that time it was the schooner Northern Lights in danger of sinking off Newfoundland.

The aging Baltic was taken out of service in 1932 after 28 years operating between Liverpool and New York. She set out on her final voyage from Liverpool to the scrap yard at Osaka/Japan February 17th 1933.

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