mv Augustus and Giulio Cesare
C A R E E R     D E T A I L S
In the final years of World War II, the Italian Line suffered catastrophic losses to its great fleet. The capitulation of Italy to the Allies in September 1943 led Nazi forces to take possession of many of the great Italian liners that were berthed in Italian ports, but with the Allied navy controlling the Mediterranean, any thought of using the Italian vessels was dismissed. As the threat of Allied invasion of Italy grew, the Germans began to have thoughts of sinking some of the vessels in port waters to deny the Allies use of port cities. The Allies were quick to recognize this threat, however, and began to systematically bomb the Italian liners to thwart the German plans. Notably lost in the ensuing bombings were the Rex, Conte di Savoia, and Sabaudia—the later was to have been the Swedish American Lines Stockholm. Though a number of Italian ships would survive the war, very little remained of the pre-war fleet that had brought such prestige and recognition to the Italian Line.
Immediately after the war the Italian Line began to repair and refurbish what was left of their fleet. The sister-ships Saturnia and Vulcania had both survived the war, as well as the Conte Grande and Conte Biancamano. All were quickly pressed back into service, mainly serving immigrants who wished to escape war-ravaged Europe. But the Italian Line recognized that its business could not rely solely on immigrant trade, and a bill before the Italian Parliament soon guaranteed state subsidies to rebuild the Italian fleet. With government subsidies in place, the Italian Line embarked upon an ambitious building program that would restore the glory it had lost during
the war.
The first two ships to enter service under the new government provisions were the motor ships Giulio Cesare and the Augustus. Put down at the Cantieri shipyards at Malfalcone and the San Marco shipyards at Trieste respectively in 1949, the new ships symbolized what was to become a renaissance in Italian shipbuilding. The new liners would serve on the Genoa to South America run—indeed, their names were already familiar to travelers on that run—and would accommodate over 1,100 passengers. Powered by Fiat diesel engines, the new motor ships would have a service speed of over 20 knots. The exterior profile of the vessels was quite modern, with the tall raked funnel design of the pre-war period giving way to a single wide funnel located at the center of the ship. The ships sported raked bows and cruiser sterns, and the result was a very modern and sleek vessel. Their speed and profiles notwithstanding, the two new ships would feature comfortably modern interiors in all classes, and each would be fully air conditioned. It was no surprise that the construction of such modern liners was followed diligently by the press, and the two ships quickly emerged as the pride of the Italian merchant fleet.
On May 18, 1950, Donna Ida Einaudi, wife of the Italian President, sent Giulio Cesare sliding down the ways. In November, Francesca De Gasperi, wife of the Prime Minster, launched the Augustus. Just a little over a year later, Giulio Cesare set out on her maiden voyage, departing Genoa for South America October 27, 1951. The Augustus followed several months later on March 4, 1952, and both ships quickly gained considerable attention as they were the fastest ships serving on the route.
m.v. Augustus
m.v. Augustus
Giulio Cesare and Augustus were to enjoy rather extensive careers. In addition to their duties on the South American run, they were sometimes pressed into service on the North Atlantic. In 1956 both liners were put on the Genoa to New York run after the loss of the Andrea DoriaIn 1958  the Augustus sailed to Halifax on March 10, 1958 bringing the Raffaele Trentadue family.  In 1960 they resumed their South American run when the new flagship Leonardo da Vinci entered service then. Though the ships remained popular, as the sixties wore on, air travel began to effect passenger loads. By the late sixties, as was the case with most all ships operating on transatlantic routes, the two ships were losing money. In January 1973, Giulio Cesare, suffering from a damaged rudder, became the first post-war Italian liner to go to the scrape yard. Though Augustus continued to trade, she was withdrawn from service and laid up at Naples in January 1976. Remarkably, she has managed to avoid the scrapers torch to present day.
Shortly after being laid up at Naples, Augustus was sold to Philippine interests and renamed Great Sea. Through the years she remained well maintained and was eventually purchased and renamed the m/s Philippines. In her last transaction, she was sold to the Manila Floating Hotel & Restaurant company and was intended to become a floating hotel and restaurant. Regrettably the plans fell through, but she remains berthed at Manilla at present. Though not in active service, Augustus is one of the last post-war Italian liners afloat today—truly a testament to the ingenuity of the craftsmen and engineers who built her.
Augustus as m/s Philippines. Photo courtesy of Martin Cox.
Augustus(1952-1976)
P R I N C I P A L     S T A T I S T I C S
Gross Tonnage: 27,078 tons
Length: 681 feet
Machinery: Fiat diesels geared to twin screws
Speed: 21 knots
Passenger Capacity: 178 First Class, 288 Cabin, 714 Tourist
Built: San Marco shipyards at Trieste (Augustus)  and Cantieri Shipyards at Manfalcone (Giulio Cesare)

 

Interiors

Cabin Class

Tourist Class

Outdoor Living

 

 


I N T E R I O R  (Tourist Class)   S P A C E S
Tourist Class Bar Tourist Class Ballroom
Despite modest rates, Tourist Class passengers enjoyed all the comforts of modern ocean travel. Above is one of the two beautiful Tourist Class Bars found on Giulio Cesare. The Tourist Class Ballroom had a colorful atmosphere that added enhancement to the gay parties given aboard nightly.
Tourist Class Dining Room Tourist Class Reading Room
The vast Tourist Class Dining Room was an ideal setting for the delicious meals pituresquely served. The Tourist Class Reading and Writing Room was the perfect setting for quiet leisure hours.
Tourist Class Cabin for two Four Berth Tourist Cabin
Delightfully furnished, Tourist Class Cabins were for either two or four persons. The spacious Cabins provided comfortable beds, individual wardrobes and washbasins.

 

 

Outdoor Living
Ships of the Italian Line had long been famous for their broad Lido Decks, and Augustus and Giulio Cesare were no exception to this standard. On each ship, three tiled outdoor pools--one for each class--graced the aft decks, and beach umbrellas and deck chairs provided a pleasant, comfortable setting for swimmers and sunbathers alike. Near each pool was a Veranda Bar, providing a place for refreshing drinks and conversation. In addition to the ample deck space, the Promenade Deck provided space for passengers to spend time strolling or relaxing in one of the comfortable deck chairs.
Passengers playing shuffleboard Promenade Deck
Cabin Class Veranda Bar
First Class Pool Pool onboard Augustus

Landed March 10/58.

 Immigration Records (1925-1935)  We


Surname:

Corriero

Given name:

Sam

Age:

19

Sex:

M

Nationality:

It

Date of arrival:

1925/12/12 (YYYY/MM/DD)

Port of arrival:

Bridgeburg , Ontario

Reference:

RG76 - IMMIGRATION, series C-5 (border entry lists)

Volume:

1925 volume 4

Page:

332

Microfilm reel:

T-15349


 

 

 

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