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The Fleets

Compañía Trasatlántica Española, S.A.

This company can be traced back to 1852 under the name of A.Lopez (Antonio López) with the purchase of a 400 ton wooden steamer used on the Cuban coastal trade. In 1862 a Cadiz - Havana service was started and in 1881 the company was established as Compañía Trasatlántica, Barcelona. Services operated between Barcelona / Malaga / Cadiz / Santander to Las Palmas / West Indies / Mexico and in 1884 the company was awarded the mail contract between Spain and the Philippines. Services started in 1887 to South and Central American ports and later to Spanish West Africa. A feeder service between Havana and New York commenced in 1886, was briefly interrupted during the Spanish-American war of 1898 and resumed the following year. In 1900 regular sailings between Spain to New York commenced, but usually started from Genoa, Italy, often with calls at Naples. From New York, the ships proceeded to Havana, Vera Cruz and back before returning to Spain. The abolition of the monarchy and formation of a Spanish republic in 1931 resulted in the renaming of several large ships for political reasons. Services were suspended on the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in 1936 and several ships were either sunk or interned and seized by other countries. It was not until 1939 that New York services recommenced and due to war conditions, the terminal port became Philadelphia between 1940 - 1945. The company was officially renamed Compañía Trasatlántica Española in 1953. Calls at New York ceased in 1972 and the company's last passenger ship was scrapped in 1974.

Many thanks to Ted Finch for his 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 the Immigrant Ship web site.


Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Alfonso XII (3)* 1890 ex- Havel, North German Lloyd, ex- Meteoro, Spanish armed cruiser, 1899 purchased renamed Alfonso XII, 1926 scrapped. 6,875
Alfonso XIII (2) 1890 ex- Oceana, Hamburg America Line, 1915 purchased renamed Alfonso XIII, 1923 renamed Vasco Nunez de Balboa, 1927 scrapped. 7,859
Alfonso XIII (3) 1927 1931 renamed Habana, 1960 sold, 1961 became Spanish fish factory. 10,551
Alicante 1889 ex- Pegu, Henderson Line, 1896 purchased renamed Alicante, 1938 sunk at Barcelona in Civil War. 3,878
Antonio Lopez 1891 ex- Ruahine, New Zealand Shipping Co, 1899 purchased renamed Antonio Lopez, 1936 laid up, 1946 scrapped. 5,975
Buenos Aires 1887 1932 laid up, 1942 scrapped. 5,021
C. Lopez y Lopez 1890 ex- Westmount, ex- Lismore Castle, Union Castle Line, 1904 purchased renamed C. Lopez y Lopez, 1931 scrapped. 4,171
Cataluna 1883 1923 wrecked Rio de Oro, West Africa. 3,488
Ciudad de Cadiz 1878 1924 wrecked in Gulf of Guinea. 3,084
Covadonga 1953 1973 scrapped. 10,226
Cristobal Colon 1927 1936 wrecked near Bermuda. 10,833
Guadalupe 1953 1973 scrapped. 10,226
Isla de Panay 1882 1884 purchased from Marques de Campo, 1929 wrecked Fernando Po. 3,484
Juan Sebastian Elcano 1928 1939 seized by Russia at Odessa, became Volga, Russian Navy. 9,965
Legazpi 1904 ex- Zungeru, Elder Dempster Line, 1911 purchased renamed Legazpi, 1931 sold to Cia.Transmediterranea. 4,349
Leon XIII 1888 ex- Taroba, British India Line, purchased 1894 renamed Isla de Cuba, 1896 renamed Leon XIII, 1931 scrapped. 5,087
Magallanes 1928 1954 laid up, 1957 scrapped. 9,689
Manuel Arnus 1921 1938 interned at Vera Cruz, subsequently sold to USA and sunk 1946 as bombing practice. 7,538
Manuel Calvo 1891 ex- H.H.Meier, North German Lloyd, 1902 purchased renamed Manuel Calvo, 1952 sold to Spanish owners renamed Drago. 5,617
Marques de Comillas 1928 1961 damaged by fire at Ferrol and 1962 scrapped. 9,972
Montevideo 1889 1936 laid up, 1940 scrapped. 5,205
Montserrat 1889 ex- Dania Hamburg America Line, 1895 purchased renamed Montserrat, 1896 returned to HAL renamed Dania, 1897 returned to CTE renamed Montserrat, 1926 sold and 1927 scrapped. 4,076
P. de Satrustegui 1889 ex- Tara, British India Line, 1894 purchased renamed P. de Satrustegui, 1927 scrapped 4,713
Reina Maria Cristina 1888 1931 scrapped. 4,818

* The ALFONSO XII (1) 1875 never sailed on transatlantic voyages and was wrecked at the Canary Islands in 1885.

The following ships never sailed on the New York service, but mainly to South and Central America.
Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Alfonso XII (2)* 1888 1898 destroyed by US fleet in Spanish American war. 5,063
Alfonso XIII (1) 1889 1915 sank at Santander. 4,381
Ciudad de Santander 1883 1895 wrecked Lobos Island. 3,488
Espana 1873 ex- Edinburgh Castle, Union Castle Line, 1880 purchased renamed Espana, 1898 scrapped. 2,679
Infanta Isabel de Borbon 1913 1931 renamed Uruguay, 1939 bombed and sunk in Civil War, 1939 refloated and laid up, 1940 scrapped. 10,348
Mexico 1875 ex- Trentham Hall, Sun Shipping Co., 1885 purchased renamed Mexico, 1901 wrecked off Portugal. 2,101
Reina Victoria Eugenia 1913 1931 renamed Argentina, 1939 bombed and sunk in Civil War, 1939 refloated and laid up, 1945 scrapped. 10,137
San Agustin 1882 ex- Venezuela, Marques de Campo, Spain, 1886 purchased renamed San Agustin, 1900 sank in Straits of Magellan. 2,359

The following ships were used on the New York - Havana service.
Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Alfonso XII (1) 1875 1885 wrecked Canary Islands. 2,915
Baldomero Yglesias 1865 ex- Ebro, 1881 purchased from Royal Mail S.P.Co. renamed Baldomero Yglesias, 1898 scrapped. 1,509
Ciudad Condal 1873 ex- Washington, 1875 purchased from Baltic Lloyd renamed Ciudad Condal, 1906 scrapped. 2,576
Habana 1872 ex- Ernst Moritz Arndt, 1879 purchased from Baltic Lloyd renamed Habana, 1900 scrapped. 2,597
Manuel L. Villaverde 1883 1921 wrecked off Cape Palmas. 1,501
Mendez Nunes 1871 fate unknown. 2,331
Mexico 1876 ex- Trentham Hall (Sun Shipping Co., London), 1881 renamed Mejico for Marquis de Campo, 1885 transferred to Cia Trasatlantica renamed Mexico, 1901 wrecked near S. Viana do Castelo. 2,101
Panama 1876 ex- Branksome Hall, 1881 purchased from Sun Shipping Co., London renamed Panama, 1898 sold renamed Hooker, 1899 wrecked near Cavite. 2,085
Rabat 1872 ex- Pasages, 1888 purchased from A. Lopez y Cia, Barcelona renamed Rabat, 13th Aug.1929 sank in collision on voyage Gijon to Cartagena. All hands lost. 791
San Agustin 1882 ex- Albano (W. B. Forewood), 1882 renamed Venezuela by Marques de Campo, 1886 transferred to Cia Trasatlantica renamed San Agustin, 1900 wrecked Smythe's Channel. 2,332
Santo Domingo 1877 ex- Dublin Castle, 1883 purchased from Curry's Castle Line renamed Santo Domingo, 12th Jul.1898 run ashore and scuttled in Cuba. 2,911
Vizcaya 1873 ex- Santander, 1885 purchased from A. Lopez y Cia, Barcelona renamed Vizcaya, 30th Oct.1890 sunk in collision off New Jersey. 2,213

* The ALFONSO XII (1) 1875 never sailed on transatlantic voyages and was wrecked at the Canary Islands in 1885.

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