The first mainland Chinese ship to glide into an American port in 30 years docked here today before a star-spangled welcome from U.S. officials.
The Liu Lin Nai, property of the People's Republic of China, arrived empty but Chinese officials the ship filled to the brim with American grain.
"We hope this will be the first of many ships," Seattle Port Commissioner Henry Kotkins told were Washington's two Decmocratic U.S. senators, Warren Magnuson and Henry Jackson, Transportation Secretary Brock Adams and Washington Gov. Dixie Lee Ray, together with a number of chinese foreign ministry officials.
Today's docking came a month after another seafaring celebration between the U.S. and Chinese when the S.S. Letitia Lykes sailed into Shanghai as the first American ship in 30 years to enter a Chinese port.
The two dockings are part of a shipping agreement signed in Febrruary between Lyke's Brothers Steamship Co. and the China Ocean Shipping Co.
The Chinese ship, by the way, was not made in China. The 633-foot-long, 22,000-ton vessel was built in Norway in 1971.
On the dock here where it arrived were cars and trucks just unloaded from someone else's ship from Japan. CAPTION: Picture, Ship's Master Bei Hanting leads his officers down gangplank in Seattle. UPI