The Caledonian Steam Packet Co. was founded in 1889 and in 2014 is 125 years old. It originally sailed from Gourock but came to encompass many of the Clyde coast piers and resorts, from Girvan to Argyll. At one time in competition with the Glasgow & South Western steamers and those of the North British Railway, by 1947 and nationalization, the steamers of these companies had all come under the auspices of the Caledonian Steam Packet Co. By 1973, the fleets of David MacBrayne and the CSP were amalgamated. The Cal-Mac fleet comprises the third volume in this series on Clyde and West Coast steamers.
Alistair Deayton is an acknowledged expert on West Coast steamers. He has written numerous books on the subject including the hugely important Directory of Clyde Paddle Steamers. He lives in Paisley.