Wednesday, 20 July 2011
Henry B Tucker
Dawn behind the Henry B Tucker of the Luckenbach Line. Through The Panama
As far as my research shows there was no such ship of that line in 1947 at the time of Malc's voyage through the Panama Canal. This is not unusual for Malc as he either incorrectly spells names of ships, invents or slightly alters their identities.
In this case, I think he is referring to the Henry St.G.Tucker an ex- Liberty ship similar to the S.S. Brest on which Malc was sailing. Henry St.G.Tucker was originally owned by U.S.Department of Commerce and operated by American South African Line / Lykes Bros,Steamship Co.Inc.under WSA / USMC Service Agreement Form GAA / BB (General Agent Agreement / Bare Boat. Lykes Bros,Steamship Co Ltd sailed between New Orleans and other Gulf ports (Houston, Galveston etc), Yokohama and other Japanese ports, Korean ports, Taiwanese ports, Manila, Indonesian ports, Singapore, Penang, Port Swettenham, Singapore and return to US Gulf via the Philippines.
With regard to the Luckenbach Line, they didn't own a vessel corresponding to the name Henry B.Tucker. However, they did sail Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Panama Canal, Philadelphia, New York, Boston. Seattle and Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Panama Canal, New Orleans, Houston, Mobile routes. After World War II the company took over from the United States Maritime Commission several standard ships to make up for the wartime losses which means they would have used ex-Liberty ships as well.One such ship was the A C2-S-AJ3 Standard type steam turbine driven merchant built by the North Carolina Shipbuilding Company, Wilmington, North Carolina and launched for the WSA on 6 September 1944 as USS Waukesha (AKA-84). She was decommissioned on 10 July and struck from the Navy List on 31 July and therefore returned to the control of the WSA. She was purchased by the Luckenbach Steamship Co., New York in 1947 and renamed Mary Luckenbach. She continued to trade for the same firm until 1959 when she was sold to the States Marine Lines Inc., New York and was renamed Bayou State, as shown in photograph below.
In conclusion, I think Malc probably got the name slightly wrong as usual and perhaps liked the company name Luckenbach?