Images from the Golden Age of Cruising
By John Graves
Maritime Photo Service was the first company to take photographs of passengers as they traveled by ship to exotic locations across five continents on the seven seas. The company grew with the travel industry beginning in the 1920s when immigration slowed to a trickle and the cruise industry took hold in earnest. The legacy is a vast collection of sumptuous images which provide us with a view on the world that has since vanished forever. Now known as the Waterline Collection of 16,500 negatives, the National Maritime Museum has selected two hundred inspiring, entertaining, informative and beautifully composed images that perfectly capture the golden age of cruising. First hand accounts also provide insight into the limitations of working at sea with improvised darkrooms in the most inauspicious locations, seasickness, loneliness and the demands of passengers made the business-on-board photography quite an undertaking. Such difficulties were eased by the adventures to be had on every trip. Through the photographers own eyes, the era of traveling on majestic ships, John Graves, the NMM’s curator, draws on these previously unpublished images to explore the self-contained world on board, the destinations, the famous ships themselves and the ever powerful lure of the sea. Hardbound in canvas-like cloth with an attractive dustjacket. Gorgeously illustrated with sharp black and white photos. 256 pages. Coffee table-size book 9 X 11 1/2.