Office of Public Affairs

Osher Map Library Lecture and Exhibit

In the wake of the 100th anniversary of the Titanic’s ill-fated maiden voyage, USM’s Osher Map Library will host a lecture presented by maritime historian Lincoln Paine about the history of ocean liners, “The Largest Moving Man-Made Creatures in the World.”

The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held from 6 - 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 15 in the Sam L. Cohen Educational Center, Osher Map Library and Smith Center for Cartographic Education, USM Portland. A reception and exhibition preview will precede Paine’s lecture, at 6 p.m., followed by that lecture at 6:30 p.m.  RSVP for this event by Friday, May 11 to 780-4850 or

The exhibit is titled “The Triumph of the Passenger Ship: Norman H. Morse Ocean Liner Collection.” It will up for viewing from 1 - 4 p.m., Tuesdays through Thursdays, from May 15 - August 23 in the Osher Map Library.

Three years ago Norman Morse donated his collection of ocean liner memorabilia to the Osher Map Library. Assembled over eight decades, the collection includes ship plans, brochures, pamphlets, postcards, rate cards, menus, passenger lists, snapshots and postcards and a selection of reference books.

Paine’s lecture will complement the exhibit with a discussion and overview of the development of the ocean-going passenger ship from the 1870s, through its heyday in the 1920s and 1930s, and into its decline in the second half of the twentieth century. Paine is the author of “Down East: A Maritime History of Maine” (2000), and his forthcoming “Beyond the Sea: A Maritime History of the World.”

Illustration from publicity postcard of Cunard’s Mauretania (1907-36), fastest ship on the North Atlantic or two decades.