Atlantic Kingdom pays tribute to the Americans who challenged Cunard, the shipping company that held a monopoly on North Atlantic trade routes in the nineteenth century. In an era when civilisation first grappled with large-scale technology and creative industries promised a new standard of living, competition for control over maritime trade was fierce. Cornelius Vanderbilt and P. T. Barnum were among those who battled like mythical gods for control of their domains. These titans of the Atlantic left behind them a wreckage of human lives, lost ships, and squandered fortunes in their failed bids for supremacy of the seas. This book is a clear, succinct, lively, and sure-handed evocation of American maritime enterprise at its zenith.