America’s Greatest Naval Architect and His Quest to Build the S.S. United States

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Hour 2

“Getting there is half the fun,” is rarely a desire of the modern traveler, but back when the S.S. United States made its maiden voyage, this passenger luxury liner was built for speed and comfort. It has been 60 years since Harvard College-drop out and self-taught engineer William Francis Gibbs’ technological masterpiece was launched. She carried dignitaries and Hollywood starlets, her image has been featured in high-profile films, and her top-secret speed broke many nautical records in her time. Now the ship’s two red, white, and blue funnels’ peeling paint is an image peering out from its docking on the Delaware River in South Philadelphia, a memory of America’s postwar maritime greatness. Historian STEVEN UJIFUSA tells the story of Gibbs and his dream ship in, “A Man and his Ship: America’s Greatest Naval Architect and His Quest to Build the S.S. United States.”

Steven Ujifusa’s blog:

http://www.stevenujifusa.com/blog/

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[audio: 072312_110630.mp3]

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