Lykes Brothers Steamship Co (Lykes Lines) was founded in 1898 in New Orleans then moved to Tampa Florida. It was the most important U.S. firm operating in the Gulf of Mexico and made its first profits came from transporting timber and cattle from the Lykes family estates to Cuba after the Spanish-American War. Ships appear to be named after members of the Lykes family.
Shortly after WW2, Lykes Brothers was operating 50 ships totaling 364,000 gross tons.
The company was sold by the Lykes family in 1979 and then repurchased by them 1983. It was sold to Canadian Pacific Ships Ltd. in 1997 after filing for bankruptcy.
Canadian Pacific Ships Ltd. decided to dispense with the historical names of all of its subsidiary companies in 2005 as a re-branding exercise. Canadian Pacific Ships was itself taken over by Hapag-Lloyd and the Lykes Line website is rigged with a redirection to the Hapag-Lloyd website.