Steamship Society to serve first class treatment, French cuisine at ocean liner dinner


Long before the days of cell phones and Uber, travel was a truly special experience for many who crossed the Atlantic. Ships weren't just a way to get from point A to point B, they were floating palaces that commanded your attention with their size, and catered to your every need at sea.

The Steamship Historical Society of America, a Warwick nonprofit dedicated to preserving our country's maritime heritage, will hold its third Ocean Liner Dinner on Saturday, April 7 beginning at 6 p.m. at Rhodes on the Pawtuxet, 60 Rhodes Place, Cranston.

The theme of the evening is the French Line and one of its most famous ships, the Normandie. Featuring a multi-course meal recreated from some of the finest French cuisine ever served, the dinner will also include an open bar, and silent and live auctions. Tickets are $150 each or $250 per couple.

To reserve a spot, call 463-3570 or email

Launched in 1932 with 200,000 onlookers, the Normandie's special hull design helped her reach fast speeds with a fraction of the power of traditional liners. She held the Blue Riband for the fastest transatlantic crossing at several points during her service career, and is said to be the most powerful steam turbo-electric-propelled passenger ship ever built. Technical aspects aside, her interior design was the stuff of legends. Sculptures, paintings, drawings and photographs decorated the public spaces along with grand perspectives, spectacular entryways, and long, wide staircases.

Proceeds from the event will support SSHSA as it continues to expand its offerings at the Ship History Center in Warwick. The group's impressive archive, which comprises hundreds of thousands of images, artifacts, periodicals, artwork, official records and memorabilia that help tell an extensive history of engine-powered vessels, their passengers and their crews - is available for research by appointment.

The event will also help SSHSA broaden its role as an educator and steward of maritime resources, supporting the organization's "Steaming into the Future" educational program. Funds will be used in conjunction with grants from the Maritime Administration, the Champlin Foundations, and the Heritage

Harbor Foundation to build an online interactive experience aimed at educating students worldwide.


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