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The Fleets

Luckenbach Steamship Co., New York, 1850-1974

Luckenbach Steamship Co. was one of the longest-lived and most successful of US shipping companies.
Lewis Luckenbach started with a single tugboat in New York and initially built his fortune by pioneering tug-and-barge transport of coal from Norfolk, Virginia (the outlet for the coal fields in what is now West Virginia), to New England. Luckenbach was later a major force in the intercoastal trade.
After World War II the company took over from the United States Maritime Commission several standard ships to make up for the wartime losses.

In 1960 Randolph Sevier, President of the Matson Line, sought acquisitons or mergers with Isthmian, along with United States Lines, States Lines, Luckenbach Steamship and others. In the end, nothing was produced from any of these negotiations.

Edgar F. Luckenbach reorganized the company between 1960 and 1970 by withdrawing ships from the unprofitable intercoastal trade and re-deploying them on the international charter market. At the same time, he broadened the shore side activities of the firm. The Luckenbach Steamship Company and its affiliates served over 150 ship-owning principals and their vessels on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. The end came in 1974.

Many thanks to Henk Jungerius and Ted Finch for their assistance in collecting this data. The following list was extracted from various sources. This is not an all inclusive list but should only be used as a guide. If you would like to know more about a vessel, visit the Ship Descriptions (onsite) or Immigrant Ship web site.

  • Routes:
    • Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Panama Canal, Philadelphia, New York, Boston. Seattle
    • Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Panama Canal, New Orleans, Houston, Mobile

Funnels & Flag:

Fleet:

Funnel Funnel Flag
Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Andrea F. Luckenbach (1) 1919 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | 10 March 1943 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U.221. 6,565
Andrea F. Luckenbach (2) 1945 built by North Carolina Shipbuilding Co., Wilmington, NC. | ex- Ottawa standard ship type C2-S-AJ3 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1947 purchased renamed Andrea F. Luckenbach, 11 March 1951 struck submerged object off Kauai Island, abandoned, refloated and scrapped in situ. 8,160
Audrey J. Luckenbach 1946 built by Kaiser Company, Richmond Yard 3, Richmond, California | ex- Marine Snapper standard ship type C4-S-A4 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1961 purchased renamed Audrey J. Luckenbach, 1968 sold renamed Overseas Jason, 1969 renamed Overseas Suzanne, 1972 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 10,600
Dorothy Luckenbach 1919 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | ex- Edellyn built for United States Shipping Board, 1922 purchased renamed Dorothy Luckenbach, 1944 renamed Ernest Koranda for US Navy, 1946 returned renamed Dorothy Luckenbach, 1957 scrapped at Oakland. 6,370
D. N. Luckenbach 1883 built by Wigham, Richardson & Co., Newcastle upon Tyne | 27 October 1917 torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine in the Bay of Biscay. 2,919
Edgar F. Luckenbach (1) 1916 built by Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Company, Newport News | 21 July 1939 damaged in collision and scrapped. 6,002
Edgar F. Luckenbach (2) 1944 built by North Carolina Shipbuilding Co., Wilmington | ex- USS Tolland standard ship type C2-S-AJ3 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1946 purchased renamed Edgar F. Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Blue Grass State, 1970 sold to Reliance Carriers S.A., Panama, renamed Reliance Cordiality, 1971 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 8,170
Edgar F. Luckenbach (3) 1946 built by Kaiser Company, Richmond Yard 3, Richmond, California | ex- Marine Leopard standard ship type C4-S-A4 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1961 purchased renamed Edgar F. Luckenbach, 1968 sold renamed Overseas Edgar, 1969 renamed Overseas Daphne, 1972 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 10,600
Edward Luckenbach (1) 1899 built by Neafie & Levy, Philadelphia | 03 April 1915 wrecked off False Cape, N.C. 401
Edward Luckenbach (2) 1916 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | 01 July 1942 struck mine and sunk with the loss of 1 life. 7,916
Edward Luckenbach (3) 1943 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Snipe standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1946 purchased renamed Edward Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Aloha State, 1971 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,870
F.J. Luckenbach (1) 1886 built by R. Thompson & Son, Southwick | ex- Euskaro built for M.M.de Arrotegui, ex Marie 1906, 1907 purchased from Merritt Chapman renamed F.J. Luckenbach, 1914 missing last seen off Jacksonville. 2,472
F.J. Luckenbach (2) 1917 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | Scrapped 1951 n/a
F.J. Luckenbach (3) 1943 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Barb standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1949 purchased renamed F.J. Luckenbach, 1960 sold to Pope & Talbot renamed P & T Seafarer, 1963 sold renamed American Hawk, 1971 damaged by underwater explosion and scrapped. 7,888
Florence Luckenbach (1) 1910 built by A. Stephen & Sons Ltd., Linthouse | ex- Damara, 1915 purchased renamed Florence Luckenbach, 29 January 1942 torpedoed, shelled and sunk by Japanese submarine I.64. 5,049
Florence Luckenbach (2) 1944 built by North Carolina Shipbuilding Co., Wilmington | ex- Starlight standard ship type C2-S-AJ built for United States Maritime Commission, 1948 purchased renamed Florence Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed, Badger State, 1970 sank 1,500 miles northwest of Hawaii after explosion in cargo. 8,166
Fred K. Luckenbach 1888 built by J. Readhead & Sons Ltd., South Shields | ex- Charters Tower built for F. Stumore & Co., London, ex- San Mateo 1889, 1915 purchased from M.E.M. Makalua renamed Fred K. Luckenbach, 1923 sold to Wabash SS Corp. renamed Castle Lodge, 1923 sold to C.H. Callaghan renamed Virginia Pretelt, 1924 sold to Hans Jensen renamed Kirsten Jensen, 1924 scrapped at Genoa. n/a
George Luckenbach 1943 built by Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp., Pascagoula, Mississippi | ex- Sea Star standard ship type C3-S-A1 built for United States Maritime Commission, 1946 purchased renamed George Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Buckeye State, 1973 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,868
Harry Luckenbach (1) 1881 built by Wm. Gray & Co Ltd, West Hartlepool | ex- Surrey built for Atlantic Transport Line, 1888 renamed Michigan ,1888 sold to Williams, Torrey & Field's Bernard SS Co. not renamed, 1889 sold to Christopher Furness not renamed, 1889 sold to R.L. Chilchrist, 1890 sold to Charles Lilburn, 1890 sold to C.A. Beyts, later Beyts Craig & Co., 1893 sold to Wilhelm Wilhelmsen, 1900 sold to Luckenbach SS Co. renamed Harry Luckenback (cargo), 1918 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-84. 2,949
Harry Luckenbach (2) 1919 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | ex- Sol Navis built for United States Shipping Board, 1920 purchased renamed Harry Luckenbach, 17 March 1943 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U.91 in Convoy HX229 with the loss of 80 lives. 6,355
Harry Luckenbach (3) 1943 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Devil standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1949 purchased renamed Harry Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Copper State, 1973 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,838
Hattie Luckenbach 1901 built by Maryland Steel, Sparrow’s Point | ex- Lyra, 1915 purchased from Boston Tow Boat Co., Boston renamed Hattie Luckenbach, 1923 sold to Spanish American renamed Primero, 1924 sold to Ybarra & Co. renamed Cabo Torres, 1933 scrapped at Sagunto. 4,417
Horace Luckenbach (1) 1919 built by Asano Shipbuilding Co., Asanao | ex- Eastern Trader built for United States Shipping Board, 1923 purchased renamed Horace Luckenbach, 1947 sold to G. Costa, Italy renamed Giovanna C, 1953 scrapped at La Spezia. 6,475
Horace Luckenbach (2) 1944 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Flier standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1949 purchased renamed Horace Luckenbach, 1968 sold renamed Overseas Horace, 1969 renamed Overseas Natalie, 1971 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,888
Jacob Luckenbach (1) 1881 built by Sunderland Shipbuilding Co. Ltd., Sunderland | ex- Hermann built for White Cross Line (Steinmann & Ludwig, Antwerp), 1894 sold to Norway, renamed Hero, 1907 sold to USA renamed Succes, 1908 purchased renamed Jacob Luckenbach, 05 July 1916 sunk in collision. 2,879
Jacob Luckenbach (2) 1910 built by Maryland Steel, Sparrow’s Point | ex- Honolulan built for American Hawaiian S.S. Co., New York, ex- Thorvald Halvorsen 1916 for T. Halvorsen, ex- Argentina 1921, 1922 purchased from P. Kleppe renamed Jacob Luckenbach, 08 May 1927 wrecked Point Guionos, Costa Rica and scrapped at Baltimore. 7,059
Jacob Luckenbach (3) 1918 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | Laid down as War Indian but completed as Radnor for United States Shipping Board, 1930 purchased renamed Jacob Luckenbach, 1947 sold to China Overseas Lines, Shanghai renamed Tung Ping, 1950 sold to Pacific Union Marine Corp, Panama renamed Pacific Dragon, 1955 sold to Pacific Bulk Carrier Inc, Panama (C.Y.Tung) renamed Ocean Justice, 1959 scrapped at Tokyo. 7,770
Jacob Luckenbach (4) 1914 built by Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp., Pascagoula, Mississippi | ex- Sea Robin standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 194 purchased renamed Jacob Luckenbach 14 July 1953 sunk in collision with HAWAIIAN PILOT off San Francisco. 7,868
J.L. Luckenbach (1) 1886 built by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co., Glasgow | ex- Saale built for Norddeutscher Lloyd, 1900 damaged in NY dock fire, 1900 purchased renamed J.L. Luckenbach, 1921 sold to A.M. Ostrom, New York renamed Princess, 1923 renamed Madison, 1924 scrapped in Italy. 4,967
J.L. Luckenbach (2) 1919 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | ex- South Bend built for United States Shipping Board, 1922 purchased renamed J.L. Luckenbach, 1948 sold to Republic SS Corp. renamed San Francisco, 1951 sold to Djakarta Lloyd renamed Diponegoro, 1952 renamed Djakarta Raya, 1959 scrapped at Hong Kong. 6,369
J.L. Luckenbach (3) 1943 built by Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp., Pascagoula, Mississippi | ex- Lamar standard ship type C3-S-A1 built for United States Maritime Commission, 1949 purchased renamed J.L. Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines, Evergreen State, 1962 sold to Global Bulk Transport Co., New York not renamed, 1971 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,959
Josephus 1876 built by E. Haggett, Newcastle, Maine | 1917 sold to US Navy not renamed and immediately began collier duties in the 3d Naval District. She was assigned to NOTS 8 August 1918 and operated with the coastwise collier service from Norfolk to New England ports. Josephus was detached from NOTS 27 March 1919 to take up peacetime collier duties in the 5th Naval District. She was stricken from the Navy List 13 June 1919 and sold to the Neptune Line 11 September 1919. 1,340
Julia Luckenbach (1) 1882 built by Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij., Rotterdam | ex- Zaandam built for Holland America Line, ex- Styria 1897, 1903 purchased renamed Julia Luckenbach, 03 January 1913 sank after collision off Tangier Is Gas Buoy, Chesapeake Bay. 3,154
Julia Luckenbach (2) 1916 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | She operated under charter to the U.S. Army during the first year of U.S. participation in World War I. Taken over by the Navy in August 1918 and placed in commission as USS Julia Luckenbach she carried cargo to France beginning in September of that year. Transferred from the Naval Overseas Transportation Service to the Cruiser and Transport Force a few months after the November 1918 Armistice, she was then used to bring American veterans home from the former European war zone. This work ended in July 1919 and USS Julia Luckenbach was decommissioned in September of that year. Returned to her owner, the Luckenbach Steamship Company, her subsequent long civilian career ended when she was declared a "total constructive loss" on 22 September 1943 after a collision with BRITISH RESOLUTION. 8,151
Julia Luckenbach (3) 1944 built by North Carolina Shipbuilding Co., Wilmington | ex- USS Tate standard ship type C2-S-AJ3 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1947 purchased renamed Julia Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Bay State, 1970 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 8,162
Katrina Luckenbach 1918 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | Katrina Luckenbach was assigned to NOTS, and departed New York 10 June with a cargo of Army supplies for American forces in France. The cargo ship returned to the States 16 August and, following repairs, was transferred to the Cruiser land Transport Force to assist in returning American forces from Europe. She sailed from Boston 15 June 1919 with cargo for France. Upon her return to New York, Katrina Luckenbach decommissioned 25 November 1919 and was returned to her owners, 1953 scrapped. 5,854
K.I. Luckenbach 1918 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | 1954 scrapped. 5,887
Lena Luckenbach (1) 1920 built by Harima Dockyard, Harima | ex- Eastern Soldier built for United States Shipping Board, 1922 purchased renamed Lena Luckenbach, 16 August 1944 sunk as a breakwater at Omaha Beach. 5,238
Lena Luckenbach (2) 1943 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Cat standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1949 purchased renamed Lena Luckenbach, 1968 sold renamed Overseas Lena, 1969 renamed Overseas Eva, 1971 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,888
Lewis Luckenbach (1) 1903 built by J.H. Dialogue & Son | 11 October 1917 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine off Ushant. 3,906
Lewis Luckenbach (2) 1919 built by Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, Mass. | 1944 selected for use as an Army Hospital Ship. Conversion was accomplished at Boston, Massachusetts, between 16 May 1944 and 18 March 1945 by the Bethlehem Steel Company. The ship was renamed Louis A. Milne. Following commissioning, the Louis A. Milne left Boston on 19 March 1945 and went to Milfordhaven, Wales, from where she returned to Charleston, South Carolina. After a voyage to Avonmouth in May and one to Milfordhaven and Southampton, the ship sailed in Mid-July for Cherbourg, France, and from there returned to New York in August. The Louis A. Milne was next ordered to the Pacific, via the Panama Canal, and reached Honolulu in early September. After repairs at Pearl Harbor, the Milne proceeded to Manila, returning to Los Angeles in November, 1945. The Milne then went to Anchorage, Alaska, and from there to Honolulu, thence to Manila (arriving in January, 1946), and via Hawaii to San Francisco in early March. At San Francisco, the vessel underwent extensive voyage repairs by General Engineering and Drydock Company from March until 10 May 1946. 1957 scrapped. 10,653
Lillian Luckenbach 1919 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | ex- Marica built for United States Shipping Board, 1922 purchased renamed Lillian Luckenbach, 27 March 1943 sunk in collision with CAPE HENLOPEN. 6,369
Mary Luckenbach (1) 1920 built by Southwestern Shipbuilding Co., San Pedro, California | 1936 sold to Sabine Transportation renamed C. B. Watson, 1947 sold to Italo-Argentina renamed Indiana, 1954 sold to Egiziano Lloyd Med renamed Al Horreya, 1957 sold renamed Mansoura, 1983 scrapped at Alexandria. 5,607
Mary Luckenbach (2) 1919 built by American International Shipbuilding Corp., Hog Island, Pennsylvania | ex- Sac City built for United States Shipping Board, allocated to National Steamship Company, N.O. Pedrick and Mississippi Shipping Company and later American Diamond Line, 1932 purchased renamed Black Falcon, 1941 sold to Luckenbach Steamship Co. renamed Mary Luckenbach, 13 September 1942 attacked in Convoy PQ17 by German torpedo aircraft and one aircraft crashed into ship which blew up, no survivors. 5,049
Mary Luckenbach (3) 1944 built by North Carolina Shipbuilding Co., Wilmington | ex- USS Waukesha standard ship type C2-S-AJ3 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1947 purchased renamed Mary Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Bayou State, 1973 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 8,162
Mathew Luckenbach (1) 1918 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | ex- Deerfield built for United States Shipping Board, ex- Kelvina 1926, 1929 purchased renamed Mathew Luckenbach, 19 March 1943 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U.525 in Convoy HX229. 5,821
Mathew Luckenbach (2) 1944 built by Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp., Pascagoula, Mississippi | ex- Sea Perch standard ship type C3-S-A1 built for United States Maritime Commission, 1947 purchased renamed Mathew Luckenbach, 1960 sold to States Marine Lines renamed Gopher State, 1973 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,870
Nina Luckenbach 1919 built by American International Shipbuilding Corp., Hog Island, Pennsylvania | ex- Claybourne / City of Alton built for United States Shipping Board, 1932 purchased renamed Black Gull, 1940 sold to Luckenbach Steamship Co. renamed Nina Luckenbach, 1948 sold to Italo Panamense, Panama renamed Rosalba, 1953 scrapped at Hughes Bolckow, Blyth. 5,029
Paul Luckenbach 1913 built by Schiffsbau & Maschinefabrik Bremer Vulkan, Vegesack | ex- Mark built for Norddeutscher Lloyd,1917 seized by US Government renamed Suwanee, 1920 transferred from US Navy renamed Poznan for Polish American Navigation Corp, 1922 purchased renamed Paul Luckenbach, 1942 sunk by Japanese submarine I-29. 8,428
Scipio 1880 built by Wm. Denny & Brothers, Dumbarton | ex- Ravenna built for P&O, 1898 sold to G.P. Walford, London not renamed, 1898 to USA renamed Scipio, 1899 purchased same name, 1900 sold to G.B. Lavarello, Italy, 1902 destroyed by fire. 3,372
Robert Luckenbach (1) 1919 built by Asano Shipbuilding Co., Asanao | ex- Eastern Merchant built for United States Shipping Board, 1922 purchased renamed Robert Luckenbach, 1947 sold to G. Costa, Italy renamed Luisa C, 1955 sold to Globo de Navegacion S.A ., Panama renamed Sula, 1959 scrapped in Japan. 6,461
Robert Luckenbach (2) 1944 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Runner standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commision, 1949 purchased renamed Robert Luckenbach, 1961 sold renamed Overseas Rose, 1971 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,888
Susan V. Luckenbach (1) 1890 built by A. Stephen & Sons, Glasgow | ex- Asphodel built for J.B. Murray & Co., Glasgow, ex- Norfolk 1900, 1902 purchased renamed Susan V. Luckenbach, 1903 missing at sea. 2,674
Susan V. Luckenbach (2) 1881 built by Harland & Wolff, Belfast | ex- British Queen built for British Shipowners Ltd, ex- Obdam 1889 for Holland America Line, 1898 sold to US Government renamed MacPherson, 1906 sold to Zotti Line renamed Brooklyn, 1908 purchased renamed Susan V. Luckenbach, 1914 sold to Barber SS Co. renamed Onega, 1918 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine UB.123. 3,558
Susan V. Luckenbach (3) 1918 built by Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Co, Chester, Penn. | ex- Neponset built for United States Shipping Board, 1929 purchased renamed Susan V. Luckenbach, 1947 scrapped at Mobile. 5,781
Walter A. Luckenbach (1) 1899 built by Neafie & Levy, Philadelphia | 1916 used as a barge renamed Luckenbach No.3, 1917 sold renamed Montauk, 1920 sold renamed A.L. Bisso, 19 September 1947 foundered New Orleans. 434
Walter A. Luckenbach (2) 1918 built by Todd Dry Dock & Construction Company, Seattle | She was turned over to the Navy in June 1918 and placed in commission at that time. Following repairs at the Mare Island Navy Yard, California, the ship made her initial operational voyage, carrying nitrates from Chile to Norfolk, Virginia, in August and September 1918. Her next trip, to France with U.S. Army cargo, was made in October and November. Upon her return to the U.S. in mid-December, Walter A. Luckenbach began conversion to a troop transport. When this work was completed in January, she began the first of five round-trip voyages bringing American veterans of the "Great War" home from France. USS Walter A. Luckenbach was decommissioned and returned to her owner in late July 1919, 1950 sold and briefly renamed A.L. Bisso before coming under Turkish ownership as Mardin, 1958-59 scrapped. 8,286
William Luckenbach (1) 1913 built by Schiffsbau & Maschinefabrik Bremer Vulkan, Vegesack | ex- Pommern built for Norddeutscher Lloyd,1917 seized by US Government renamed renamed Rappahannock, 1934 purchased renamed William Luckenbach, 1947 sold to G. Costa, Italy renamed Maria C, 1952 laid up, 1953 scrapped. 6,557
William Luckenbach (2) 1943 built by Western Pipe & Steel Company of California, San Francisco | ex- Sea Bass standard ship type C3-S-A2 built for United States Maritime Commission, 1946 purchased renamed William Luckenbach, 1961 sold to Pope & Talbot renamed P & T Forester, 1963 sold American Robin, 1973 scrapped at Kaohsiung. 7,888

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