City of New York (1888)

Later names
New York (1893)
USS Harvard (1898)
New York (1898)
USS Plattsburg ID-1645 (1918)
New York (1919)

Inman & International Steamship Company
(Inman Line)
Liverpool, England
(The Inman Line was owned by
International Navigation Co., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

Feb. 22, 1893:
American Steamship Company
(American Line)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
(The American Line was owned by
International Navigation Co., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

Polish American Navigation Corp.
New York, New York

Irish American Line
United Transatlantic Line
American Black Sea Line

J & G Thompson
Clydebank, Scotland
Keel Laid:
Year Built:
March 15, 1888
Sister Ships:
City of Philadelphia
Maiden Voyage:
August 1, 1888
Scrapped in Genoa, Italy in 1923.

Dimensions, machinery and performance

2 triple expansion by Thompson (d)
9 fire tube type (coal fired)


Gross Tons:
10,499 (a)
20 knots
362 (b)
3 (e)
1,740 (c)

Construction notes:
10,798 GRT after 1901 refit.
407 as USS Harvard.
725 after 1893.
1901 new triple expansion engines fitted by William Cramp & Sons, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
2 after 1903.

Aug. 1, 1888:
Maiden voyage Liverpool - Queenstown - New York. Remained on this route until
Feb. 22, 1893 making more that 40 trans-atlantic crossings.

Aug. 23, 1892:
Won the Blue Riband (eastbound) 5 days, 19 hours, 57 minuets, 20.11 knots. Held until
May 12, 1893 losing it to the Campania.

Feb. 22, 1893:
Transferred to American Line, re-flagged in the USA and renamed New York.
Feb. 25, 1893:
First voyage as New York (New York - Southampton).
Apr. 16, 1898:
Began last voyage before navy service.
Apr. 1898:
Chartered by the US Navy as an auxiliary cruiser with a civilian crew, converted to aux.
cruiser by Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co. Mounted eight 5"/31 and eight
six pounders.

Apr. 26, 1898:
Commissioned as USS Harvard at New York.
Apr. 30, 1898:
Departed New York for West Indies for scouting duty.
May 12, 1898:
Blockaded in the harbor at St. Pierre, Martinique by the Spanish ships Furor and
Terror until May 17. Then moved to Santiago de Cuba and used to take dispatches
to Haiti and then returned to Santiago de Cuba.

June 7-26, 1898:
At Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co. for repairs.
Crew officially taken into the US Navy.

June 26, 1898:
Departed for Cuba carrying troops and supplies arriving about July 1, 1898.
July 3, 1898:
Rescued 672 men from the Spanish warships Almirante Oqunedo and Infanta Maria Teresa
after the Battle of Santiago de Cuba.

July 4, 1898:
The "Harvard Incident", six of the Spanish POW's were shot and killed and a further
13 were wounded when one of the POW's crossed a line that had been drawn on the
ship which the prisoners were not allowed to cross. The man, maybe attempting to
get relief from the heat, did not obey the order to return across the line. This is thought
to be because he did not understand English. Because of this misunderstanding one of
the crew on Harvard shot him. The other prisoners immediately rose to their feet.
Believing that a revolt was beginning the crew on Harvard fired a volley into the
prisoners killing five and wounding thirteen others. The incident was later ruled as
a terrible misunderstanding.

July 10, 1898:
Departed Cuba for Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
Aug. 1898:
Under temporary control of the War Dept. was sent back to Cuba to return troops.
Aug. 21, 1898:
Departed Cuba with General Chaffee his staff and 616 men from the 33rd. Michigan
Volunteer Infantry.

Aug. 27, 1898:
Arrived at New York.
Sept. 2, 1898:
Decommissioned at New York.
Dec. 1898:
Returned to American Line reverting to the name New York.
Jan. 11, 1899:
Returned to New York - Southampton service.
May 1901:
Refit at William Cramp & Sons Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. New engines installed,
one funnel removed, tonnage increased to 10,798 GRT. Refit completed in Apr. 1903.

Apr. 15, 1903:
Resumed New York - Southampton service.
Jan. 1909:
Escorted the Italian liner Florida to New York after Florida had rammed and sunk
the White Star liner Republic on Jan. 23, 1909.

Apr. 10, 1912:
Nearly collided with the White Star liner Titanic at Southampton. Titanic was departing
on her maiden voyage when she passed the New York. The hydrodynamic forces from
Titanic's screws caused the New York's stern mooring line to break and she drifted
dangerously close to the Titanic. The tugs managed to stop the New York from colliding
with the Titanic.
(Historical note: If the two ships had collided Titanic would have undoubtedly undergone
some kind of repairs and would not have made her ill fated voyage)

First and second class merged into one class.
Aug. 14, 1914:
Moved to New York - Liverpool route.
Apr. 9, 1917:
Damaged by a mine laid by SMS UC-65 while approaching the Liverpool bar light vessel.
Repaired at Liverpool.

May 1917:
Chartered by the US Army and used as a troop transport.
May 9, 1918:
Chartered by the US Navy for use as a troop transport.
May 24, 1918:
Commissioned into the US Navy as USS Plattsburg ID-1645.
Armed with three 6", three 3", two 1 pounders and two machine guns.

June 12, 1918:
Departed New York on the first of four trooping voyages to Liverpool transporting
8,776 troops in total. Following the Armistice the Plattsburg made seven voyages from
Brest, France to New York returning 24,330 troops home from Europe.

Aug. 29, 1919:
Arrived at New York from the last trooping voyage.

Sept. 1919:
Oct. 6, 1919:
Returned to American Line and reverted to the name New York.
Removed from service.
Sold to Polish Navigation Co. used on only one round trip voyage New York -
Antwerp - Danzig - Southampton - Cherbourg - Brest - New York.

Sold to Irish American Line.
Sold to United Transatlantic Line.
Sold to American Black Sea Line.
June 10, 1922:
Departed New York for the last time en route to Naples and Constantinople, Turkey.
Late June or
early July 1922:

Upon arrival at Constantinople sold at auction on orders from the US Government.
Scrapped at Genoa, Italy

First twin screw liner ever built.
(The first twin screw ship in service was the French ship Washington which had been converted from a sidewheel paddle steamer)

Equipped with electric lights, electric ventilation system and hot and cold running water.
Last liner class built with clipper type bow.
Largest steam screw steamer built to that time (largest ship being Brunel's Great Eastern).

Builder's Data
Page published Aug. 2, 2007