Samuel Cunard

Samuel Cunard (November 21, 1787 - April 28, 1865) was a shipping magnate.

Cunard was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, the son of a master carpenter and timber merchant who had fled the American Revolution and settled in Halifax..

A highly successful entrepreneur in Halifax shipping, and one of a group of twelve individuals who dominated the affairs of Nova Scotia, Samuel Cunard went to England where he set up a joint venture with several other businessmen to bid on the rights to run a transatlantic shipping company between England and North America. Successful in his bid, the company would eventually bear his name, becoming Cunard Steamship Limited.

In 1840 the company's first steamship, the Britannia, sailed from Liverpool, England to Boston, Massachusetts marking the beginning of regular passenger and cargo service. The prosperous company eventually absorbed Canadian Northern Steamships Limited and its principal competition, the White Star Line, owners of the ill-fated, Titanic. After that, Cunard dominated the Atlantic passenger trade with some of the world's most famous liners.

Cunard also owned a number of other companies in Canada. His coal company which he bought to fuel his liners is still one of Nova Scoatia's major fuel companies. He also controlled logging ventures and at one point owned a seventh of Prince Edward Island.

In 1859, Samuel Cunard was knighted by Queen Victoria. In Halifax, at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, the entire second floor has been dedicated to his life and his world famous shipping line

Sir Samuel Cunard died at Kensington, London, England and is buried there in the Brompton Cemetery.


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