Rex

Jan Hendrik
2nd October 2005, 04:53
The Ansaldo Yard in Genoa built this vessel, GRT 51.062 and 870 ft long.
Owner: Navigazione Generale Italiano.

Her maiden voyage started on 27th Sept 1932.
She held the Blue Riband for a brief period only. The ship was quite luxurious and eye catching.
The Atlantic service of the “REX” ended in the spring of 1940 before Italy joined the war.
She was laid up off Capodistra, south of Teieste.
She was sunk in shallow waters on 8th Sept 1944 by bombers of the Royal Air Force. The last remnants of the vessel were removed in 1958.`

oil painting by John Gardner
copyright Hempel A/S Copenhagen 05/90

fred henderson
2nd October 2005, 15:32
Thank you Jan for this thread. To add a little to your information: -
She was ordered by Navigazione Generale Italiana who had originally intended to call her Guglielmo Marconi but was launched by them 1 August 1931 as Rex. On 1 January 1932 the various leading Italian owners merged as Italia Flotta Riunite.
She achieved the fastest westbound crossing of the Atlantic in August 1933. She never broke the eastbound record. Nevertheless she was regarded as the fastest Atlantic liner until the arrival of Normandie in 1935. The Hales Trophy was produced with the intention of presenting it to Rex but by the time the trophy was made Normandie had achieved a faster crossing. It was agreed that Italia hold the new Trophy for three months before passing it to CGT.
My information is that Rex was not bombed on 8 September 1944 Rex but was attacked by rocket firing RAF aircraft and she caught fire, leading to her loss.

Fred

R58484956
2nd October 2005, 17:07
Quite a few RAF "bombers" were capable of firing rockets, perhaps bombers should read aircraft.

Jan Hendrik
2nd October 2005, 23:34
Thanks for the additional info.