RMS Olympic was a British transatlantic crossing ocean liner, the lead ship of the White Star Line's trio of Olympic, Titanic, and Britannic. Construction of Olympic began three months before Titanic. Olympic and Titanic were constructed side by side. Titanic collided with an iceberg in the North Atlantic and Britannic struck a mine and sank in the Kea Channel in Greece in 1916.
Olympic's attracted considerable worldwide attention from the press and public. Following her first arrival in New York, Olympic was opened up to the public and received over 8,000 visitors. More than 10,000 spectators watched her depart from New York. Following the Titanic disaster, Olympic was redesigned and her improved safety features were featured prominently in advertisements.
During the war, Olympic is reported to have carried up to 201,000 troops and other personnel. Her impressive war service earned her the nickname "Old Reliable."
During the 1920s, Olympic remained popular and fashionable and attracted the rich and famous of the day; Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, and Douglas Fairbanks. Prince Edward and Captain Howarth were filmed on the bridge of Olympic for Pathé News. One of the attractions of Olympic was the fact that she was nearly identical to Titanic. On 18 November 1929, as Olympic was traveling to Titanic's last known position, the ship suddenly started to vibrate violently, and the vibrations continued for two minutes. It was later determined that this had been caused by the 1929 Grand Banks earthquake.
Changes in immigration laws in the United States in the 1920s restricted the number of immigrants and a major reduction in the immigrant trade for the shipping lines. At the turn of 1927–28, Olympic was converted to carry tourist third cabin passengers as well as first, second and third class.
Until 1930 there had been around one million passengers a year on the transatlantic route, but in 1934, the shipping was badly affected by the Great Depression and passengers had dropped by more than half. Olympic ran at a loss until she was withdrawn from service and sold for scrap in 1935. Decorative elements were removed and sold at auction before she was scrapped, and now adorn buildings and a cruise ship.
Olympic had completed 257 round trips across the Atlantic, transporting 430,000 passengers on her commercial voyages, traveling 1.8 million miles.