Click on the  red link, to get to the story ****** 


                 SPONSORS                                 HOME PAGE                              INDEX                                   HISTORY


The Calendar of Modern Shipping


1405     The Magnetic Compass , first recorded to have been used as a Navigational aid.

1415     Henry the Navigator, the 'new' Portuguese 'father' of renaisance world Cartography, after Ptolemy.

1450     Johannes Gutenberg invents the printing press.

1492     August 3rd, Chritopher Columbus sets out on his journey of discovery to the New world.

1513     Piri Reis produces his controversial map, discovered in the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul in 1927.

1569     Gerardus Mercator, devised the first practical projected nautical world map.

1609     Galileo Galilei introduces the Telescope.

1680      Robert Hooke the English 'Leonardo' first proposes the cylindrical screw propeller for ship propulsion.

1688     First known reference to Edward Lloyd’s Coffee House in Tower Street, London.

1696     Lloyd's News, a general news-sheet is the forerunner to  Lloyd's List published by Edward Lloyd..

1713     Edward Lloyd dies.

1734      Lloyd's List  first published as a weekly journal with commercial news and ship arrivals in British Ports.

1744     The Baltic Exchange is founded at the Virginia and Black Coffee House in Threadneedle Street, London.

1759     The first Sextant was made by John Bird.

1768     Pancton tests a cylindrical screw propeller.

1769          James Watt adds a Condenser to Thomas Newcomen's model Steam Engine.

Lloyd’s new Coffee House opens in Pope's Head Alley.

1774     The first Lloyd's General Insurance Policies formulated by  John Julius Angerstein        

            Lloyd’s Subscribers rent rooms in the Royal Exchange. The link gives the year by year history of Lloyd's.

            James Watt begins commercial construction of his own Steam Engine, with Matthew Boulton.

1775     John Harrison, with his 1759 H4 Chronometer, is awarded the Longitude Prize - at last!

1780     James Watt is the first to devise the screw propeller with blades.

1786       Robert Fulton, the American Inventor, meets James Watt in England

1783     Claude Francois introduces the 'Pyroscaphe' .

1791     Colonel Mark Beaufoy, founded The Society for the Improvement of Naval Architecture.   

1800     The Semaphore signalling system is in wide use.

1801     Robert Fulton tests his submarine 'Nautilus' in France

1803     The 'Charlotte Dundas' first 'steams' on the Clyde, with Robert Fulton as a passenger.

            Robert Fulton’s first Steamboat navigates the Seine, under the gaze of Napoleon.

1807          Robert Fulton builds the ‘Clermont’  in America with a Boulton & Watt steam engine brought from Britain.

1812     Henry Bell introduces the 'Comet' on the Clyde.

1814           Robert Fulton builds the ´FULTON´, or USS 'Dermologos', the first US steam powered warship.

1816          The 'Prinzessine Charlotte' steams on the Elbe, with a Boulton & Watt engine.

1818     The 'Ferdinando Primo' becomes the first Italian steamer.

1819          The ‘Savannah’  is credited as the first Sailing Ship cum Paddle Steamer to cross the Atlantic.

1822          The Aaron Manby is the first iron Steamer to travel from the Thames in England to the Seine in France.

1824          The 'Eagle' becomes the first Thames paddle steamer.

1825     The 'Enterprise' is the first steamship to reach India.

1836          Sir Francis Petit Smith and John Ericsson demonstrate the first practical screw propeller.

1837     Weather Forecasting began with the Electrical Telegraphy information transmission invention.

1838          The ‘Sirius is the first ship to cross the Atlantic solely under steam. It took 18 days.

                The Blue Riband is established and the 'Sirius' is the first to win it.

Brunel's Great Western, a paddle steamer, reaches New York on her maiden voyage, in 14 days.

The Great Western crosses the Atlantic faster than the 'Sirius' to gain the Blue Riband.

1839           Louis Daguerre invents photography. Ships begin being photographed with the Daguerreotype camera. 

1840      The RMS Britannia is the first Cunard Ship to take Royal Mail across the Atlantic.

            Samuel Morse invents the Morse Code.

1843           Brunel's  Great Britain is the first iron Steamship with a screw propeller to cross the Atlantic.

1845     The Irish Potato Famine, strange as it may seem, contributed greatly to the evolution of Shipping.

1851     John Brown, builder of the 'Queens', is founded on the Clyde.

1854     The first Compound Expansion Steam Engine enters service with the Persia  .

1856     The  Persia, the first iron Cunarder, crosses the Atlantic in 9 days at 13.82 knots, winning the Blue Riband.

1859           Oil, the 4th Estate, after iron, steam and the screw propeller, is discovered at Titusville Pennsylvania.

Brunel is photographed against the launching chains of the 'Great Eastern', with a Daguerreotype.

1860           Brunel's 'Great Eastern' enters service in the North Atlantic, instead of the Australia run.

            The first Meteorology Office was founded in the U.K.

1862     Harland and Wolff, eventual builders of the Titanic, is founded in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

            The Scotia, the last Cunard Paddle Steamer, wins the Blue Riband and holds it until 1867.

1869          The Suez Canal is opened.

            The Majestic Cutty Sark enters service.

1870           Lloyd's is Incorporated by Act of Parliament and widespread Agencies are established worldwide.

1871     William Froude, begins Ship Model Research.

1875     British Prime Minister Disraeli, buys a majority stake in the Suez Canal as a 'gift' to Quenn Victoria.

            The Plimsoll Line is made compulsory by the British Parliament, by the Merchant Shipping Act.

            A.P. Möller, founder of  Maersk is born.

1877           C.A. Parsons patents the screw propeller working in a duct. It was revived by Kort in 1925.

            Sir John Isaac Thornycroft patents the Air-Lubricated ship's hull.

1878          The 'Zoroaster' is the first water-borne tanker, working in the Caspian sea.

1881     The Servia the 17 knot Cunarder, equipped with electric light, enters service.

            LIVADIA, the round hull, Imperial Russian Yacht, goes into service.

1884     GMT adopted as Prime Meridian Time.

1886           The 'Gluckauf', at approx. 3,200 tons, is the world's first vessel built as an open sea oil tanker.

1891     The History of the Diesel Engine.

1891     Herbert Akroyd Stuart builds the first compression ignition (diesel) engine at Bletchlie England.

1893     On February 23rd , Rudolph Diesel receives his Patent for his ‘hot bulb engine’.

            SNAME is founded by William H. Webb, Francis T. Bowles, David W. Taylor and Clement Griscom.

1894     The 'Turbinia' the brainchild of Sir Charles Parsons, is the first Turbine driven ship.

            The Plimsoll Line, a circle with a line through the middle, is fixed by law.

1897           Mirrlees, Watson and Yaryan,  build first Diesel Engine under license from Rudolph Diesel.

1898          The Diesel Engine reaches an efficiency of  75%, burning peanut oil, at the 1898 Paris exhibition.

1899          The 'Oceanic', built at H&W Belfast, becomes the first ship to exceed the size of the 'Great Eastern'.

            Thornycroft builds first model Hydrofoil.

1900          The liner 'Deutschland' wins the Blue Riband from 'Kaiser Wilhelm der Grosse', crossing in 5  days.

1901     Marconi sends a Wireless Telegraphy signal to Newfoundland from Cornwall.

1903     The Wandal', built by L. Nobel in Russia, becmes the first ship fitted with a Diesel engine.

1904     A.P. Möller, founder of  Maersk,  buys his first ship.

1905          The 'Thomas W. Lawson', the only seven-masted schooner, is converted to carry oil.

The The 'Pamir’ enters service in the Nitrate trade between Chile and Europe, around the Horn

1907     The 'Thomas W. Lawson' ends up on the rocks of the Scilly Isles, causing oil pollution in the Channel.

The legendary Mauretania goes on her maiden voyage to New York.

The 'Lusitania' goes into service and captures the Blue Riband.

The Mauretania makes the fastest Westbound crossing.

1908     SOS is adopted as the international distress signal.

1909     Sir William Theodore Doxford, builds his first Prototype Opposed piston diesel engine.

1910     The Wireless Telegraph was first used at sea in a criminal case to capture Dr. Crippen on the Montrose.

1911      Elmer Sperry patents the Gyrocompass.

1912          The Mauretania makes the fastest Eastbound crossing at 23.69 knots.

The Titanic sinks in mid-Atlantic after striking an icebeg.

            The Panama Canal first opens.

            The 'Selandia' is the first diesel powered ship to cross the Atlantic.

1913          The German 'Imperator' captures the Blue Riband.

1914           May 30th,  the Aquitania, the third of the Cunarders leaves for her maiden voyage to New York

 June, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria assassinated,  World War 1 breaks out.

 William Doxford builds the first commercial opposed piston diesel engine.

1915      The ''Lucitania' is sunk by a U-boat barely 50 miles south of Ireland.

1917            The Panama Canal opens to uninterrupted operation.

1918            WW 1 is over.

1920      The Panama Canal is formally opened by US Presidential Proclamation.

              Anton Flettner develops the Rotor Ship. Built with one, two and three rotating Cylinders.

1925            Kort revives the Parsons ducted propeller, calling it the 'Kort Nozzle'.

1928            The C.O. Stillman at 24,200 tons dwt. is the world's first 'super'  tanker.

 Lloyd’s open new building in Leadenhall St. London

1929      The Load line act is passed in the United States.

             UT introduced to refer to GMT

             The Piri Reis map of 1513 is discovered at Topcapi Palace in Istambul Turkey.

             The Piri Reis map contains several of Ptolemy's maps of AD 150, first published in 1482.

1932      The stabilized Conte di Savoia and the Rex become the first Italian Liners to join the North Atlantic run.

1935            The 'Normandie' captures the Blue Riband on her maiden voyage to New York.

             Harold Hales MP, introduces the Blue Riband Trophy.

1936            The Queen Mary goes into service in August, claims the Blue Riband with a speed of 30.14  knots.

1938      The first Wartsila diesel engine is built under license from Krupp.

1939            The Mauretania II goes into service.

             WW 2 Breaks out.

1940            The Queen Elizabeth leaves the Clyde, partly completed, goes directly to New York, not Southampton.

 The Empress of Britain at 42,348 gross tons, is the biggest casualty of the war.

1941             America joins the War. Lend Lease begins.

             The Liberty ship goes into service. 2,751 are built in four years.

 The German Enigma Machine is deciphered, at Bletchley Park, England

1942      The T2, the T3, the C2 and the Victory ship enter the war effort.

1945              WW2 ends.

 The Liberty ship is lease-sold to replace ships lost in the conflict.

 After the war, the shipborne Radar began to be used by Merchant Ships.

1946      Frederick Creed patents the SWATH, the Small Waterplane Area Twin Hull.

1948        IMO is established by the SOLAS convention in Geneva.

1950            The Aquitania the Beautiful Ship is scrapped in Scotland after 36 years of legendary sailings.

1951             Pielstick engines first appear on ships.

1952             The United States becomes the first Liner to exceed 35 knots on the North Atlantic run.

 The World Unity at 31,745 tons dwt., is the world's largest tanker.

 Christopher Cockerell patents the Hovercarft.

1953            The Tina Onassis at 45,270 tons dwt, becomes the biggest tanker in the world.

  A few month later, Ludwig's Sinclair Petrolore trumps her with a Deadweight of 56,089 tons.

 The Christopher Colombo and the Andrea Doria are the latest Italian entries in the North Atlantic.

1954      The Cutty Sark becomes a Museum Ship.

             The C4 Mariner is introduced.

1955      MacGREGOR introduces the first steel hydraulic and chain pulled Hatch Covers.

             The nuclear submarine Nautilus goes into service.

             The Azimuth Pod is invented.

1956      The Suez Canal is closed. Freight rates soar.

             The Andrea Doria is rammed by the Stockholm off Nantucket.

             The Ile de France saves many passengers.

 D.K. Ludwig's Universe Leader becomes the world's biggest Tanker at 85,515 tons dwt.

 Malcolm McLean´s first Container ship, was a converted T2, sailing from Newark NJ. to Houston Texas.

1957             Newcastle March 19th , the 500,000 ton tanker is first mooted.

 The Suez Canal reopens.

 Naftiliaki, first published as a Broadsheet, providing Shipping News to the Greek Community.

1958      BGS  is formed. It is open to all who graduated in Britain, irrespective of Nationality.

                  The first Liberty ship is lengthened.


             The Bulk Carrier, makes its beginning, to complement the Container ship.

             The Scot Philanthropist and Shipping magnate, Sir William Burrell, dies at 97.

1959       The St Lawrence Seaway opens. 280 day a year access to Lake Superior.

              The Universe Apollo, becomes the first tanker above 100,000 tons dwt.

              IMO holds its first meeting.

              The demise of the Transatlantic Liners begins by the arrival of Jet travel. The Ile de France is scrapped.

             The world's first Nuclear Powered Merchant ship, the N.S. Savannah, i s launched.

1960            The France goes into service.

             Tramp Ships and Cargo Liners.

1961      The Bregaglia is the first Mayerform Bulk Carrier.

             The Manhattan is launched. Eventually she will negotiate the North West Passage, through the ice.

1962      The birth of the VLCC.

1964      Todd's Shipyards underwrites Bulbous Bow Model Tank testing, in the USA, Japan, Spain and France.

             Harland & Wolff Belfast build the first LNG carrier, the Methane Pioneer.

1964      THENAMARIS is founded, "THANASSIS M.", a 1949 Tween Decker.

1965      The Car Carrier, as a special hull form, is introduced.

1966      The Inert Gas System is introduced after the tanker British Crown explodes while loading crude oil.

             The Arbitration Act comes into effect.

1967            The Suez Canal is closed, after the 6-day war. Freight rates soar again.

 Hilmar Recksten avoids bankruptcy, literally at the very last hour.

 The Torrey Canion disaster, causes massive pollution disaster, spilling 117,000 tons of crude oil.

1968            The Universe Ireland at 312,000 tons dwt. becomes the world's biggest tanker.

             The first SD14 is delivered in February, as a 'Liberty' replacement.

             The LASH ships. A self-propelled-barge and container carrier.

1969      The QE2, built by John Brown on the Clyde, enters service to become the most famous ship in the world

             The Manhattan becomes the first commercial ship to negotiate the North West Passage.

             Worldscale, the New Worldwide Tanker Nominal Freight Scale, goes into effect.

             Crude oil washing introduced after Marpessa, Mactra and King Haakon VII explode while tank cleaning.

1970             Tidal Marine makes its  IPO in New York. First for a Company with Greek Principals.

 Oil is at $3.00 per barrel.

 The Baron starts-up  Interocean Brokerage.

 The Salvage Tug, becomes an increasingly important vessel for the world's growing fleet of large ships.

 The 70s saw the beginning of the growth of the Ro/Ro, the Ro/Pax and the dedicated Ferry Boat.

1973      Ravi Tikoo introduces the 'Globtik London'. At almost 500,000 tons dwt. she fulfills the 1957 prophesy.

 Oil climbs to $12.00 per barrel, in a few months, as a result of the Yom Kippur war.

 Catamarans powered by KAMEWA and LIPS water jets enter service.

1974      The Suez Canal reopens.

1975            The Tanker Berge Istra of 277,557 tons dwt., sinks within minutes.

1976      The French tanker Batillus at 553,662 tons dwt, is the first tanker to break the half million ton mark.

1978      The Amoco Cadiz splits in two, polluting the coast of Brittany.

1979      INMARSAT is founded, to provide worldwide satellite communications and Navigation information.

             IMO panel drafts the International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue.

             IMO panel also proposes the establishment of GMDSS, the Global Maritime Distress & Safety Systrem.

1980      After being lengthened, the Seawise Giant at 564,739 tons, becomes the world's biggest ship.

             The 'lucky' yet 'out-of-luck' Norwegian shipowner Hilmar Recksten dies at 69.

             The Dredger has developed into an ubiquitous vessel of importance.

             Oil Rig Tenders, become more and more specialized with the growth of Off-Shore Oil discoveries.

1982      INMARSAT establishes the satellite communications systems for ships.

1983      GPS, the successor to John Harrison's Chronometer, is released to the public by President Reagan.

1984      The shipping crisis deepens. A quarter of the world tanker fleet is laid up

1985      Frontline A.B. is founded in Sweden.

1986      The ULCC  Sea Brilliant becomes the John S. Latsis Hellenic Fos.

1987      Since 1983, Shipping Loan Defaults reach 10 billion dollars.

             The Herald of Free Enterprise capsizes and sinks in 20 minutes in Zeebrugge, Belgium.

1988      IMO requires that ships subject to SOLAS install GMDSS. Also required to carry NAVTEX by 1993.

1990           Since  first publishd,   'TradeWinds' has won many awards for in-depth reporting of the Shipping Industry.

 The Exxon Valdez runs aground on an Alaskan reef, causing a massive oil spill.

 Wartsila acquires Stork Werkspoor.

1991      EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN is Established, with a Fleet of 15 ships.

1992     The Baltic Exchange in St. Mary Axe, London, is virtually destroyed by an IRA bomb.

             Double Hull and Age Rstriction Resolution for Tankes adopted.

1993      Ships required to carry NAVTEX and EPIRBs

             The AROSA is the first "double-double" VLCC to go into service.

1994      The Estonia sinks in the Baltic.

1995      Bob Windt achieves 137.8 km/hr (85.87 mph.) on a Hovercraft.

1996            The Sea Empress goes aground off Milford Haven, spilling 85,000 tons of oil.

             MINERVA begins its meteoric climb as a Ship Operating Company

             John Fredricksen becomes the biggest shareholder in Frontline.

             Frontline moves from Sweden to Bermuda.

                 The ferry Bukoba sinks in Lake Victoria, Tanzania.

1997      IACS, the Interantional Association of Classification Societies, is formed.

             HLS is formed, to Publish Books and other works authored by Prominent Greeks

1999      The Erica breaks up in the bay of Biscay. The 17,000 oil spill pollutes the entire west coast of France.

             The Sun Vista ex Galileo Galilei sinks. All 1,090 passengers and crew saved.

             Fitting GMDSS on all ships becomes compulsory.

             IMO adopts faster, stricter phase out of single hull tankers by 2003.

2000      The Russian Nuclear Submarine  Kursk sinks in the Barents Sea.

2001            At 450,000 tons dwt. the Hellespond Alhambra is the biggest double hull tanker.

             Skysails Established.

 The Kursk is raised by the Dutch.

 Acomarit merges with VShips. The combined Group manages more than 600 ships.

 9/11 has no immediate impact on Shipping.

2002      IPOs, Norwegian K/S partnerships and German KG companies have massive impact on Ship Finance.

2003      The Prestige is denied a port of refuge before she begins to break up, polluting 300 km of Atlantic coast.

             The tanker Tasman Spirit runs aground near Karachi, Pakistan, spilling 12,000 tons of oil.

             John S. Latsis, the Greek Shipping magnate and philanthropist dies at 92.

             New IMO guidelines for places of refuge for ships in distress, as a result of the Prestige disaster.

2004            Several Greeks expand their financial base by joining  the NASDAQ, NYSE , AMEX, ATE and the LSE.

2005      INMARSAT  joins FTSE 250 Index. Now operates 11 geosynch. satellites, providing free info to GMDSS.

2006      Stelios Hadjioanou's Easy Cruises starts operations.

             The 25 knot, 13,500 teu 'Emma Maersk', capable of sailing by wire (no crew), enters service

             The A.P. Möler, Maersk group is valued at $38 billion.

             The V.Group books the 900 ship. One in 60 ships in the world fleet, is now managed by the V.Group.

2007            The Wartsila-Sulzer at 108,920 hp is the world’s most powerful Diesel Engine.

 The Cutty Sark catches fire in Drydock.

 SHIPS of the world, by country and type in the link.

 Double Hull Bulk Carrier Resolution.

 Cruise Ships, the new sovereigns of the Seas.

 Frontline with 32 Suezmaxes and 37 VLCCs of 14,000,000 tons is the world's largest tanker fleet. 

 IACS has 10 members: ABS, BV, CCS, DNV, GL, KR, LR, NK, RINA, RS, and associate member IRS.

 Nautical Charts - a thing of the past?

 Naftiliaki celebrates 50 years of continuous Greek Shipping News publication.

 Newmartec, the sister publication of Naftiliaki, providing all the Technologican news.

 Newsfront, The Greek Shipping Intelligence provider.

 Constantine  Philippou  and his father Alexander - A century of  Designing and Building Ships      

2008     'Athina Martinou' - Nounou - Queen of the Seas.   

             BSG - Established in 1958, it is open to all who graduated in Britain, irrespective of Nationality.


            Many events and personalities not yet included in the Calendar.


          Contributions welcome to: