Hi all, I have a US cover that was transported from New York City to Germany in November 1909 and it has "per S.S. Lusitania" handwritten on it. When I looked up S.S. Lusitania, I get two results – RMS Lusitania that was torpedoed by the Germans in 1915, and S.S. Lusitania which was a Portuguese ship that ran aground off Cape Point, South Africa in 1911.
Any guesses which ship would have transported my cover? I'm guessing probably RMS Lusitania and the person who wrote S.S. Lusitania on the cover was using the improper name, but I'm really not sure. Any help would be much appreciated. (I'd scan an image of the cover, but my scanner is currently broken and I'm not sure when I'll be able to get a new one.)
I'm 99% certain that the cover was transported on the RMS Lusitania as I don't believe the Portuguese ship ever sailed the New York-Europe route. I collect covers from Canadian National Steamships operating in the Caribbean. At various times the markings appears as CNS, CNSS, RMS and SS.
While I would guess that the RMS Lusitania is more likely, I am not sure you can rule out the SS Lusitania. Both were ocean liners, the SS was launched in 1906 and the RMS was launched in 1907, and both sank, the SS in 1911 and the RMS in 1915. The RMS was built in Clydebank, Scotland while the SS was built in Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, England. There was another SS Lusitania that was a bit earlier but that one sank off of Nova Scotia in 1901 so it would not be that one. If you were going to show the cover I might suggest that it be described as likely being sent on the RMS Lusitania though it is not possible to rule out it being shipped on the SS Lusitania unless you were able to get the complete ships logs from the SS to see whether or not it made any stops in New York at about the time the cover was mailed. Without that research it would be difficult to conclude absolutely that it was the RMS and not the SS.