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Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc. Scrapbooks and Advertising Proofs, 1929-1970

Identifier: SC-0012

Contents of Collection

The collection chronicles the history of the Moore-McCormack cruise and shipping lines via publicity, news coverage, and advertising proofs. 62 large scrapbooks contain newspaper clippings from various national and international newspapers. Four boxes of advertising proofs demonstrate how the company was portrayed to the public.


  • 1929-1970


Language of Materials

Materials are in English, Swedish, Danish, Estonian, Polish, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Conditions Governing Access

Appointments to examine materials must be made in advance. Please e-mail for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Conditions Governing Use

Reproductions may be provided to users to support research and scholarship. However, collection use is subject to all copyright laws. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Historical Note

The Moore and McCormack Shipping Lines Company was established in 1913 by Albert V. Moore and Emmet J. McCormack to charter ships for commerce. The company was instrumental in promoting maritime trade with South America and introducing North American production know-how and equipment to the region. The corporation began offering passenger services lines in 1917.

After World War I, Moore-McCormack played an important role in President Herbert Hoover's American Relief Administration Program, delivering shipments of food to Russia and the Baltic. During the Great Depression, the company not only added new ships to its fleet, but it also provided jobs at a time of record-high unemployment rates. (One source of work was refurbishing older vessels, transforming them into modern passenger ships.)

As the corporation grew, it acquired other shipping lines, including Panama Pacific, American Republics, Pacific Republics, American Scantic, and Mooremack Lines, offering passenger service to South America, the Pacific Northwest, Canada, and Eastern Europe.

When the United States entered World War II, Moore-McCormack passenger service was suspended, and several of the company's vessels became Navy ships for the duration of the war. The company was appointed an agent of the War Shipping Administration and transported over 750,000 troops and more than 35 million tons of war cargo. Eleven of the company's ships were lost during the war.

By 1948, the corporation had become one of the largest owner-operators of American-flag shipping and offered passenger service between the Atlantic coast and the east coast of South America (the American Republics Line), between California and the east coast of South America (the Pacific Republics Line), and between New York and Scandinavia (the American Scantic Line).

Moore-McCormack adopted many innovations to improve passenger comfort and to optimize commercial shipping. Passenger-liner improvements from the 1950s included fin stabilizers (which reduce roll), draft-free air conditioning, and climate control for individual cabins. Commercial improvements of the 1960s included new techniques for transporting heavy equipment, refrigerated cargo, liquid cargo, and dry products. The corporation adopted containerized shipping at this time as well. In the 1970s, the company began to founder financially in the wake of competition with air travel, which was becoming more popular than cruise shipping for tourists. In 1969, the company sold its cruise ships to Holland-America. After efforts to diversify the company (involving attempts to enter the energy industry) failed in the 1980s, Malcolm McLean, owner of the United States Lines, purchased Moore-McCormack's fleet and routes in December 1982. The United States Lines filed for bankruptcy in 1986, and Moore-McCormack was formally liquidated in 1992.


24 Linear Feet : 62 scrapbooks and four document boxes


The Moore-McCormack Lines shipping company was established in New York in 1913 by steamship operators Albert V. Moore and Emmet J. McCormack to charter ships for trade services. The Moore-McCormack Lines Scrapbook Collection contains 62 scrapbooks of newspaper clippings from various national and international newspapers that focus on the history of the MooreMcCormack Lines from 1929 to 1970. The collection also includes a scrapbook that commemorates the company’s 50th anniversary in 1963 and contains many advertising brochures from 1959 to the early 1960s.

Arrangement of Materials

The collection is comprised of two series, Publicity Scrapbooks and Advertising. Both series are arranged chronologically.

Physical Location

Stephen B. Luce Library, SUNY Maritime College 6 Pennyfield Avenue Bronx, NY 10465 Telephone: (718) 409-7231

Custodial History

The collection was donated to the Stephen B. Luce Library in 2004 by Bill Miller, a maritime historian specializing in the history of ocean liners. A summary written by Mr. Miller, accompanying the deed of gift, describes the collection as "The Moore-McCormack Archives." He notes that from 1928 to 1970, the Office of the President of Moore-McCormack Lines was responsible for maintaining the scrapbooks. It is unclear how long the materials were in Mr. Miller's possession prior to the donation to the college.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection was donated to the Stephen B. Luce Library in 2004 by Bill Miller, a maritime historian specializing in the history of ocean liners.

Moore-McCormack Lines, Inc. Scrapbooks and Advertising Proofs, 1929-1970
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Edition statement
The original finding aid described the scrapbooks and was created by Johnamarie Macias (no date). Katie Hessler prepared the section on advertising proofs and Greg Murphy edited the finding aid in it's entirety in 2014. In October 2016 the collection was revised based on DACS standards and entered into Archives Space by Margaret Hammitt-McDonald and Annie Tummino.

Repository Details

Part of the Stephen B. Luce Library Repository

6 Pennyfield Avenue
Bronx NY 10465 United States
(718) 409-7231