The Superliners at War

The American Army sent a massive force of ground troops to France to help bring an end to the First World War. There were no airplanes to cross the Atlantic then, Everyone came by ship. The largest of the transatlantic passenger ships have been called superliners because they were so much larger than other ships engaged in the same task. They also carried a lot more troops, and traveled faster than the smaller passenger ships,

I have models of many in my collection. I’ve painted them in the camouflage patterns they wore during that war, To keep things in perspective, the OLYMPIC featured above was a sister ship of the ill-fated TITANIC, The others were of similar size. OLYMPIC actually was painted in more than one pattern.

Most of the ships were British. JUSTICIA was originally Dutch, but requisitioned by the British. She was sunk by a submarine while waiting to enter harbor. LEVIATHAN was originally the German liner VATERLAND. She was interned in the United States at the start of the war and was taken over by the Americans when the US entered the war. Her camouflage design was reported as having been designed by Norman Wilkinson. Although most models and paintings, including one side of my own, show her in black, white, and dark blue she was actually painted in light blue and light blue grey rather than white.

I modified my models by adding guns, lookout stations, and sometimes searchlight platforms.  These changes are often hard to see in models in 1:1250 scale. Also, my skill as a photographer may make some of the images less than I would desire, but here they are anyway.

PENTAX Image
OLYMPIC starboard side
PENTAX Image
OLYMPIC port side
PENTAX Image
AQUITANIA starboard side
PENTAX Image
AQUITANIA port side
PENTAX Image
JUSTICIA starboard side
PENTAX Image
JUSTICIA port side
PENTAX Image
MAURETANIA starboard sid
PENTAX Image
MAURETnia port side
PENTAX Image
USS LEVIATHAN port side
PENTAX Image
USS LEVIATHAN starboard side

 

 

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