Wed. July 7th
We left the wharf about 10:15, and started off down New York Harbor. Saw the N. Y skyscraper Liberty Statue, Coney Island, etc. At about 11:45 we slowed down, and a rowboat came alongside to take off the pilot and also a woman who had forgotten to get off at the pier. It was quite an experience getting her off, but was finally accomplished. At about noon we passed sandy hook and the Ambrose(?) Channel Sightship where our official time is taken for Europe. The sea was calm and the weather great. In the afternoon Dale and I explored the boat from bow to stern, going into the second cabin and steerage. We had dinner at 7 P.M. 460 miles
Thursday, July 8th
Slept like a tot all night. Abe had upper berth and I lower. This morning the sky was overcast and there was a strong N.E wind blowing which kicked up quite a sea. We are at table with two actresses and a man named Sargent who is a real Yankee joker, so we have a lot of fun. In the morning Abe and I went up in the aft wheel house and were shown the compasses, wheel, sounding lead(?) etc. Dale had a hair-cut by the ship’s barber, and Abe also patronized the barber by buying a cap. Sea rather rough and many sick. All of our party at dinner lunch and dinner. Afternoon sea very rough. Boat pitched and rolled a great deal.
Friday, July 9th
Last night the sea was so rough that the boat dipped above the portholes on both sides of the saloon, and a bottle standing on our table tipped over. All our party, however, are O.K. I did not get to sleep last night till after midnight. Every minute or two the boat would roll so that the our porthole would be buried in the water and our dress-suit(?) cases on the floor slid back and forth as the boat rolled. The rades(?) were used at table all three meals today. Many people sick. Great fun at the table. Abe and I walked a mile on the deck to night. Sea calmer in the evening. All O.K. 470 miles.
Saturday, July 10th
Slept well last night. This morning there was a fresh wind but the ship did not roll as much as yesterday. Watched people play shuffle board most of the morning, and had a game ourselves half an hour before luncheon During the morning we were introduced to the Farnsworth’s. In the afternoon Abe arranged it with the chief engineer that we three boys should visit the engine room at 10 tomorrow. Read most of the afternoon. After dinner we again walked a mile on deck and then listened to the music. Went to bed early. 494 miles (very good)
Sunday, July 11th
Right after breakfast this morning Abe, Dale, and I went for the engine room. We were taken all over the engine room and followed the propeller shafts down to the stern. We then went down to the stokehole(?) and saw the stokers at work. The visit cost us 2s 6d in fees but it was more than worth it. Service was at 10:30 but none of us attended. We spent the afternoon reading and loafing(?). By the way, we had a conversation with Captain Warr and he told us some funny stories. Good weather all day with a fresh breeze. 495 miles
Monday, July 12th
Good weather with very little sea. This morning after breakfast we passed within a mile of the Campania(?) bound for New York. The two boats exchanged signals. In the afternoon we overhauled and passed a old square rigged ship bound for Liverpool. We passed very close to her and Dale took a picture. After dinner we went down to the concert given in behalf on the Seaman’s Orpan(?) Institution. August Belmont was chairman. It was O.K. but at times rather slow. We didnt get to bed till after midnight. 487 miles.
Tuesday, July 13th
Almost calm. This morning a whole flock of sea gulls came and stayed with the ship all day. There were hundreds of them. We came in sight of land Ireland, about 10:30 A.M. and passed Fastnet(?) light about 11 A.M. From there it was about 50m. to Queenstown where we arrived at 2:30 P.M. Here we were met by two tenders [word crossed out and unreadable] which took off about 100 passengers and the mail. From there we proceeded along the coast of Ireland into the Irish Sea. We could sea both the Irish and Welsh coasts Went to bed about 10:30 and fought over accounts. Our official time was 5 d. 21 h. 41 m.
John Radford Abbot has here recorded the RMS Lucania‘s final journey, leaving New York City on July 7th and arriving in Liverpool, England on July 13th. The RMS Lucania was launched for her maiden voyage on February 2nd, 1893. She and her sister ship, the RMS Campania, were owned by the Cunard Steamship Line Shipping Company, and built by the Fairfield Shipbuilding and Engineering Company of Govan, Scotland. She became, in 1901, the first Cunard liner to be equipped with a Marconi wireless system, which was also installed on the RMS Titanic. After arriving in Liverpool on July 13th, 1909, she was laid up at the Huskisson Dock. In August, she was badly damaged in a fire and subsequently sold for parts.
Diary object #1997.040.16
This diary is in the Archives of the Andover Historical Society. The entries within span a period of just over two months during the year of 1909, and included with the diary in the Archives are eight hand-drawn sketches done by John Radford Abbot during this trip, all of which are featured in this blog, and a world map attached to the inside back cover of the diary depicting common ship routes and their mileages. Because this diary was handwritten, not everything is legible, so there are certain markings to reflect uncertainties in spelling and illegible words. If there is a possible spelling error, a question mark in parentheses (?) will follow directly after the word. If a word is illegible, two square brackets  will replace it in the transcription. Sometimes a word or symbol is crossed out and illegible, so that is indicated by [word/symbol crossed out and unreadable], which will replace the word or symbol in the transcription. If a word is crossed out but still legible, that word will have a line through it (e.g.
lunch) to indicate that. If a word is inserted into the entry, a carrot will directly precede that word (e.g. ^lunch).
Alex Hagler transcribed this diary, then designed and published this blog about the transcription, during the summer of 2015.