Sir Samuel Cunard, 1st Baronet was a British shipping magnate, born at Halifax, Nova Scotia, who founded the Cunard Line. He was the son of a master carpenter and timber merchant who had fled the American Revolution and settled in Halifax.


Born: November 21, 1787, Halifax

Died: April 28, 1865, London

Parents: Abraham Cunard

Children: Edward Cunard

Samuel Cunard was a civil engineer who came to Britain to operate the first mail service using steamships between the UK and America. He was a highly successful entrepreneur who had been a Captain in the Halifax Regiment of militia in Canada.

In 1839 he submitted a bid to the British government to undertake a regular mail service by steamship across the North Atlantic from Liverpool to Halifax, Québec and Boston Massachusetts, for £55 000 annually for 10 years. The bid was successful, and in the same year Cunard, with associates in Glasgow and Liverpool, established the British and North American Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, the ancestor of the Cunard Line.
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