Dec 16, 2013
Growing up in the age of the great transatlantic liner, William Francis Gibbs had only one dream: to build the world’s greatest ship. In that age, nations competed to build the largest, most luxurious and the fastest ship. In particular, they competed to win the Blue Riband, the prize awarded to the fastest ship to cross the Atlantic. Although Gibbs was the product of tremendous wealth and privilege, he was clear that it was not his family’s fortune that made him a success rather it was his father losing it all. Forced to drop out of Harvard and lacking basic mathematical skills, Gibbs became America’s greatest naval architect through boundless determination. Although he would build many ships, it was that first ship that he dreamed of that would mark the high-water mark of his career. The SS United States would be the largest, most luxurious and the fastest ship would know. It was also the last ship to hold the Blue Riband. In a book The Wall Street Journal called one of the ten best non-fiction books of 2012, Steve Ujifusa recounts the tale of the Steve Jobs of shipping, William Francis Gibbs. A Man and His Ship is available everywhere and in all formats. Be sure to Rate and Comment on iTunes.