Newest Waterman Steamship LASH/Containership Enters Service
The Edward Rutledge (shown above), a l i g h t e r - a b o a r d - s h ip (LASH) vessel built for Waterman Steamship Corporation by Avondale Shipyards Inc., made her maiden voyage arrival at the Port of New York recently. The second of two LASH carriers built by Avondale recently for Waterman, the Rutledge was christened at the Avondale yard near New Orleans in 1980 by Mrs. William Amado, daughter of Edward B. Walsh, president of Waterman Steamship.
During her maiden arrival, Mc- Allister Brothers docking master Capt. William Gato reported that the 40,921-dwt Rutledge, which is fitted with a bow thruster, "handled well" as she was assisted into her Brooklyn berth by the 4,300-bhp tug Roderick McAllister and the 4,200-bhp Kort-nozzled Bruce McAllister.
The newest addition to the Waterman fleet was named for Edward Rutledge, a distinguished member of the First and Second Continental Congresses, who signed the Declaration of Independence representing South Carolina. Mr. Rutledge, a Federalist, later was elected Governor of South Carolina.
The Edward Rutledge has an overall length of 845 feet 4 inches, molded beam of 100 feet, and depth to main deck of 60 feet. Designed by Friede and Goldman, Ltd. of New Orleans, she is a 32,000-shp, single-screw, turbinepropelled barge carrier/containership with a service speed of 22 knots and cargo capacity of 1,744,400 cubic feet.
The new vessel will serve ports along the Red Sea, Arabian Gulf, India, and Pakistan. She is arranged for the carriage and independent handling of 89 LASH type barges, each with a cargo capacity of 370 long tons, that are loaded in seven holds and on deck. The ship is equipped with her own 510-ton gantry crane mounted on rails that run her full length. The crane loads and discharges barges over the stern, permitting operation independent of shore facilities.
Waterman Steamship Corporation was founded with a single ship in 1919 in Mobile, Ala. Sailings to Puerto Rico were inaugurated in 1927 from the home port of Mobile, a service that proved to be a far-sighted move for Waterman and one that made an important c o n t r i b u t i o n to the company's growth. During the period of 1946-1948 Waterman owned 55 vessels, comprising the largest d r y - c a r g o f l e e t in the American merchant marine.
In 1965 the Walsh family purchased Waterman from McLean Industries, Inc. and formed Waterman Industries, Inc. Waterman Steamship Corporation is now headquartered in New York, with branch offices in Washington, Mobile, Houston, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, and New Orleans.
Currently, its fleet consists of eight ships — six LASH vessels and two freighters—offering fast and efficient service to the Far East and Middle East from U.S. Gulf and East Coast ports.