SS Ideal X

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Ideal X.jpg
Plan of the SS Ideal X
NameIdeal X, ex-Potrero Hills, ex-Capt. John D.P., ex-Elemir[4]
OwnerPan-Atlantic Steamship Company[2]
Port of registryUnited States
BuilderRebuilt as container ship at Bethlehem Steel, Baltimore, MD.[4]
Launched30 December 1944
CompletedJanuary 1945
Out of serviceSold for scrapping, 1965.[3]
IdentificationOfficial number: 247155[1]
FateScrapped in Japan, 1967.[3]
NotesFormer T2 tanker. Originally built by Marinship Corp. in Sausalito, California as yard number 158 in 1945.[1]
General characteristics
Class and typeT2-SE-A1
Tonnage16,460 GRT[1]
Length524 ft (160 m)[4]
Beam30 ft (9.1 m)[4]
Height68 ft (21 m)[4]
PropulsionElliot Company steam turbine, electric propulsion.[1]
  • 58 33-foot containers
  • 10,572 DWT[1]
Type T2-SE-A1 tanker Hat Creek underway at sea on 16 August 1943.jpg
The Ideal X was originally constructed as a T2 tanker, similar to the Hat Creek shown here in August 1943.

SS Ideal X, a converted World War II T-2 oil tanker, was the first commercially successful container ship.

Built by The Marinship Corporation during World War II as Potrero Hills, she was later purchased by Malcom McLean's Pan-Atlantic Steamship Company.[5][6][7] In 1955, the ship was modified to carry shipping containers and rechristened Ideal X. During her first voyage in her new configuration, on April 26, 1956,[8] the Ideal X carried 58 containers from Port Newark, New Jersey, to Port of Houston, Texas, where 58 trucks were waiting to be loaded with the containers.[9] It was not the first purpose built container ship: the Clifford J. Rodgers, operated by the White Pass and Yukon Route, had made its debut in 1955.[10]

In 1959, the vessel was acquired by Bulgarian owners, who rechristened her Elemir. The Elemir suffered extensive damage during heavy weather on February 8, 1964, and was sold in turn to Japanese breakers. She was finally scrapped on October 20, 1964, in Hirao, Japan.


  1. ^ a b c d e Cudahy, 2004, p. 290.
  2. ^ Cudahy, 2004, p. 30.
  3. ^ a b Cudahy, 2004, p. 312.
  4. ^ a b c d e Cudahy, 2004, p. 31.
  5. ^ "Marinship".
  6. ^ "THe JoC: 175 Years of Change". Archived from the original on 2007-09-15.
  7. ^ Cudahy, 2006.
  8. ^ "The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey - Press Release".
  9. ^ Levinson, 2006, p.1.
  10. ^ Network, MI News (2019-03-21). "Clifford J. Rodgers: The World's First Purpose Built Container Ship". Marine Insight. Retrieved 2023-01-04.


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