If you don't know what this is, you've never lived or been visiting long enough in Los Angeles or you don't know anything about the grand ocean liners of the North Atlantic. The RMS Queen Mary is one of the world's most famous ocean liners. Built for the Cunard-White Star Line by John Brown & Co. in Clydebank, Scotland in 1932-1934. She had her maiden voyage in May 1936. She was the first ship built for either the Cunard (Traditionally, their ships ended in "-ia") or the White Star (Their's ended in "-ic") Line that did not carry the traditional endings. She was built as part of a 2 ship service across the Atlantic between New York City, and Southampton and is noted for her foredeck...a tribute to past liners.
The Queen Mary was the pride of the British merchant marine and during the few years before the war broke out, held a friendly rivalry for the Blue Riband between the French Line's Normandie. Her interiors were done with great care, and in the dining room, there is a beautifully drawn map and when she was in service, one could watch the Queen Mary's progress across the North Atlantic as a bright glass piece as well as that of the Queen Elizabeth.
When World War II broke out, she sat idle for 2-3 years before being stripped bare and becoming a troopship for the United States Navy during that time, her sister ship the Queen Elizabeth made her secret maiden voyage across the Atlantic. Her nickname in the war was the "Grey Ghost" for she was painted in the drab gray, that warships are, but also because she was never every fired upon by any enemy vessel. However, there was once bizzare incident in which she accidentally sliced in half her own escort, the HMS Curacao. In September of 1946, she was decommissioned from war service.
In first decade or so of the post-war years where the best for the the sister ships. But as the 1960s saw the rise of faster more efficient planes, the useage of ships quickly fell. In September 1964, the Queen Mary made her last voyage...to Long Beach. Earlier she had been purchased by the oil rich city as a floating resort of sorts. So she remains to this day. Her sister ship was to have a similar fate on the east coast, but alas, it failed, and in the 1970s she was bought out by C.Y. Tung as a floating university, but on a party celebrating her near-renovation...a kitchen caught fire and she capsized. A tragic end for one of the world's last great ocean liners.