Owner: Oceanic Steam Navigation Co. Ltd. (White Star Line)
Vessel Type: Passenger ship
Official No: 131346
Builder: Harland & Wolff Ltd, Queen's Island, Belfast
Yard No: 400
Laid down: 16 December 1908
Launched: 20 October 1910
Handed over: 29 May 1911
Port & Date of Registry: Liverpool, 25 May 1911
Managing Owner & Address: Harold Arthur Sanderson, 30 James Street, Liverpool
Number of Decks: 5 & 2 Partial
Number of Masts: 2
Framework & Description of Vessel: Steel
Number of Bulkheads: 15
Number of water ballast tanks: 17
Length: 852.5 feet
Breadth: 92.5 feet
Depth: 65.33 feet
Gross Registered Tonnage: 45,323.82
Engine Builder: Harland & Wolff Ltd, Belfast
Engine Type: 2 X triple expansion inverted vertical direct acting surface condensing, 1 X low pressure turbine
Cylinders: 2 X 54; 2 X 84; 4 X 97 inches
Stroke: 75 inches
Nominal Horse Power: 6,906
Description: Cylindrical multi-tubular
Number: 24 double & 5 single ended
Iron or Steel: Steel
Pressure when loaded: 215lbs
Speed: 21 knots
Signal Letters: H. S. R. P.
Of all White Star's vessels Olympic, with the exception of Titanic, is the Company's most famous ship because of her long and illustrious career.
1905 signalled a new era in emigrant ship construction. The year marked a North Atlantic record, more than one million emigrants crossed from the Old World to the New. Competition from Cunard and the German lines, attempting to monopolise this growing trade, led the directors of White Star to order the design and construction of the world’s largest liners. The result was the ‘Olympic’ class - three giants that would dominate the passenger trade across the North Atlantic between Southampton and New York.
The project was an immense one. No yard was large enough to construct these vessels. The docks at Southampton and New York could not accommodate vessels of this size and almost every aspect of ship management and operation would need to be re-written in order to make the new class a commercial and operational success.
On 14 June 1911 Olympic, the new flagship of the White Star Line, departed on her maiden voyage to New York. Her sailing heralded a new era in big ship construction with all the major lines ordering vessels of similar size. The loss of her sisters by ice and mine did nothing to dent the reputation of Olympic which earned the nickname ‘Old reliable‘. She made her last commercial voyage in March 1935 and was sold for scrap; many of her fine wooden fixtures and fittings were purchased from the shipbreakers and ended up in factory and hotels - a lasting memory to one of the world’s greatest ocean liners.