The MS (Motor Ship) Batory is one of the best-known Polish Transatlantic ships and a symbol of Polish exile. It was called “Lucky Ship”, because it took part in large number of martialfight during World War II (e.g. it took part in the battles of Narvik) without suffering large damage. It was destroyed after thirty six years of duty.
The MS Batory was launched on 3 July 1935 (it was developed in Italy). On its first trip it set off from Monfalcone to Gdynia on April 1936. This amazing liner has on its deck lots of prominent gests such as: Wojciech Kossak, Monika Żeromska or Melchior Wańkowicz. This cruise was commented by Polish Radio. The MS Batory started regular service in May 1936 on the Gdynia – New York run. The ship equipment was new and very impressive. It was powered by two sets of Burmeister and Wain diesel motors (it could reach a speed of 18 knots). The ship was 160 metres long, weight over 14,000 tonnes, had seven desks, guest cabins, dining and dance halls, a reading room, a pool and a gym. It was also decorated with big taste (including pricey porcelain and beautiful furniture). MS Batory was callednamed a floating art showroom.
The information about war met the ship during a journey from Canada and then The Batory became a warship and spent 652 days at sea. The most meaningful journey was a evacuation almost 500 children from Europe to Australia.
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After war the vessel came back to Poland in 1946 and carried on civil service (in the 60-ties it even played in a few movies). On its desk many Poles left theirs homeland looking for a better life beyond the Atlantic Ocean in the USA. Then, after many years of duty, in 1971 The Batory was sent into pension and go to demolition yard in Honkong. In 1969 it was superseded by a larger ship TSS Stefan Batory. Nothing, apart from photographs, recollections and a few memorials had left from the MS Batory and its ship accessory. That was the end of the story of the Polish Transatlantic Liner known as a “Lucky Ship”.
Tourists can admire design of MS Batory in the Emigration Museum in Poland (read more dentist krakow poland
) in the town of Gdynia. Unfortunately guests can’t marvel interiors of the vessel, but they can get know more about its outstanding history, daredevil man (especially about its chef – Eustazy Borkowski). In the other halls of this museum they can also find out more about man who opted emigration, about their existence (before and after they left motherland), about their motivation and future choices.