by Spencer Howard
After the demise of the first SS President Hoover, the precarious financial situation of the Dollar Line led the U.S. Maritime Commission to take control of the line in late 1938, and the name of the company was changed to American President Lines Ltd. Instead of the $ sign that had graced the funnels of the Dollar ships, the new symbol was a white eagle.
In May 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed a state of national emergency due to the war in Europe, and the armed forces began chartering the American President Lines ships. Over the next four years, the American President Lines ships were decimated by the war. At the start of the war there had 20 ships. Of these, only three were left at the end of the war. After the war, the Dollar family attempted through legal means to recover the company from the government, but was unsuccessful. They still had a stake in the company, and when the line was sold, the money was split between the Dollar family and the US Government. The company was purchased by a group called APL Associates. The company lives on today and now is one of the biggest container shipping companies in the world.
The second SS President Hoover was built in 1939 as the Panama for the Panama Lines service from New York, via Haiti, carrying 216 first class passengers and cargo. She was sold to American President Lines in 1957, renamed the President Hoover, and put into service on a Pacific circuit from San Francisco. In 1962 she was replaced by the larger President Roosevelt (which later became the Chandris Atlantis). Chandris Line acquired President Hoover in 1964 and renamed her Regina. She was finally scrapped in 1985.
After the end of the passenger liner era, APL named two cargo ships in honor of Mr. Hoover. President Hoover (3) served under the APL flag from 1967 to 1972; President Hoover (4) served from 1979 to 1996.