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House Flags of U.S. Shipping Companies: E

Last modified: 2005-03-19 by rob raeside
Keywords: united states shipping lines |
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John J. Eagle & Co

[John J. Eagle & Co]  by Joe McMillan

John J. Eagle & Co, New York
I think this company descends from the mid-19th century Eagle & Hazard, which operated the Eagle Line between New York and Mobile, Alabama, primarily for the cotton trade. The flag is swallowtailed with a red, white, and blue border and the abbreviation E & Co in light blue on a white field.
Source: (no longer available)

Joe McMillan, 6 October 2001

Eastern Steamship Line

The Eastern Steamship Company was founded in 1901 by the Wall Street financier C. W. Morse by consolidating six small New England coastwise lines. It provided service between New York and New England and later branched into winter cruises to Florida. The line stopped operating during World War II, then resumed business briefly after the war with summer cruises to Nova Scotia. The company suspended operations again in 1954 and was bought by F. Leslie Fraser. Fraser shifted the vessels to the Panamanian flag and again conducted a cruise service along the New England and Canadian Maritimes coast until 1962, when he sold the line to W. K. Lovett. Lovett sold it in turn to the Norwegian company Gotaas-Larson in 1970, after which the Eastern name and house flag passed out of use. The present-day Royal Caribbean Cruise Line is in part the corporate descendant of the Eastern Steamship Co.

[Eastern Steamship Co.]  by Joe McMillan

The first flag I have found was in [ruh09], a blue trapezoid with the initials of the company in white.
Source: 1909 update to Flaggenbuch 1905

[Eastern Steamship Co.]     [Eastern Steamship Co.]  by Joe McMillan

By 1912, the house flag was a blue swallowtail with a red E inside a red circle. This flag appears in Lloyds Flags and Funnels (1912) and Talbot-Booth (1937). National Geographic (1934), however, showed a blue burgee-shaped flag with a plain white E, which remained in use into the early 1950s Wedge (1951) until F. L. Fraser bought the company in 1954.

[Eastern Steamship Co.]       [Eastern Steamship Co.]  by Joe McMillan

Under Fraser, Eastern sailed under a red flag with a blue lozenge throughout and a white F for the owner's last name. W. K. Lovett kept this design but changed the initial to an L when he took over in 1962. (Source: Web history of Eastern SS. Co--for which I've lost the URL--and (I believe) images of company memorabilia at (no longer available)).

Joe McMillan, 6 October 2001

[Eastern Steamship Co.] by Ivan Sache

This company not only had plenty of owners and flags but also of names and moved around the country it seems with sources noting it in Portland, Boston, New York and Miami over its lifetime. Names appear to have started with Eastern Steamship Co., then Eastern Steamship Corporation, Eastern Steamship Lines Inc. and finally ending back as Eastern Steamship Corporation by 1962. As well as the flags shown here, Talbot-Booth in his Merchant Ships 1942 adds another with a normal blue swallowtail bordered white and bearing a white "E" but he also notes that for a short time previously the letter was red.  There is one discrepancy, I feel, in that the flag he shows on the funnel is a tapered swallowtail and it is thus possible that there is a connection with the plain blue version shown by National Geographic and Brown 1951, both of whom also show a white bordered flag on the funnel even if not for the flag itself.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 March 2004

Earn-Line Steamship Co.

[Earn-Line Steamship Co.]  by Joe McMillan

Earn-Line Steamship Co., Philadelphia
A white swallowtail with blue edging at the hoist, upper, and lower edges and a short blue strip in the center forming a letter "E."
Source: Reed (1896)

Joe McMillan, 6 October 2001

Eastern Transportation Co.

[Eastern Transportation Co.]  by Joe McMillan

Eastern Transportation Co., Baltimore
A blue triangular pennant with the company's initials in white.
Source: Wedge (1951)

Joe McMillan, 6 October 2001

Eschen & Minor Co.

[Eschen & Minor Co.]  by Joe McMillan

Eschen & Minor Co., San Francisco
One of the last companies operating under sail. Flag divided per saltire, white in the hoist and fly, red in the upper quadrant and blue in the lower, with the letters E and M in white, arranged vertically.
Source: Lloyds 1912

Joe McMillan, 6 October 2001