The well respected website, Cruise Industry News (www.cruiseindustrynews.com) is reporting that the SS. United States could be sold for scrap by the end of the month.
Despite valiant efforts that have verged on the herculean over several years, the SS. United States Conservancy has been thus far unable to raise funds to continue keeping the former Blue Ribband holder at her Philadelphia pier beyond the end of this month.
The legendary liner- shackled to her berth since the mid nineties- costs some $60,000 per month to maintain in her current state. While externally quite dilapidated, the hull and superstructure of the liner are actually in quite sound condition.
For all that, time finally seems to be running out for the fabled ‘Yankee Flyer’. The next instalment of her monthly fee is due for payment by this October 31st.
It has always been a mystery to me that America- a country wonderfully capable of preserving it’s maritime heritage of fighting ships- has proven so unwilling to preserve the most stunningly successful and iconic merchant ship in the entire seafaring history of the nation.
This is by no means a fallen axe as of yet, but there is a pressing urgency for awareness of the true plight of this mighty, monumental engineering triumph to be raised masthead high, and kept there.
Those of us on this side of the Atlantic are watching this with heavy hearts and anxious eyes.
As ever, stay tuned.