Whisky Magazine Issue 112
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In part two of our series about whisky labels we board an ocean steamer and take a little detour by car, train and airplane
Nowadays flying is a commodity. However at the beginning of the 20th century it was a luxury product only the rich and famous could afford. To transport goods over long distances or making intercontinental trips, people would usually choose a ship. The wellknown Holland-America Line (HAL) was founded in 1873, originally as the Dutch-American Steamship Company. At first it operated solely between Rotterdam and New York but soon other ports, such as Baltimore, became noted destinations. Transatlantic passenger services ceased around 1971, when flying had become a more attractive alternative. HAL then concentrated on luxury cruises. The present headquarters is located in Seattle, WA.
Currently HAL operates 15 ships and I am informed most bars are stocked well with whisky.
When HAL was a quarter of a century old, American banker John Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) tried to monopolise international ocean transport, for goods as well as people. Morgan was a business tycoon, philanthropist, banker and art collector. Consolidating industries and organising corporate finance was his bread and butter. Already having reorganised and virtually monopolised the US Steel Industry, he greedily looked at markets for expanding his business emporium. Having seen the huge potential in transatlantic shipping, he set new goals and founded the International Mercantile Marine Co (IMM) on 1 October 1902. The IMM grew into a powerful American trust company and acquired a number of important shipping com...