James V. Guthrie

November 11, 1991

James Vincent Guthrie, 78, a retired shipping industry executive and civic leader, died Friday of a heart attack at Fallston General Hospital.

A mass of Christian burial was being offered today at St. Ignatius Roman Catholic Church, 533 E. Jarrettsville Road in Hickory.

Mr. Guthrie worked for 60 years in the shipping industry, beginning his career at the age of 17 as an office boy at the Panama Pacific Shipping Line in New York. In 1940, Mr. Guthrie moved to Baltimore to work for the Waterman Co. as an office manager. In 1955, he returned to Panama Pacific as the head of the Baltimore office.

He moved to the Cottman Co. as vice president of operations and was president of the company when he retired in 1978.

After serving as treasurer and vice president, he was elected president of the Steamship Trade Association. In that position he led Baltimore's shipping management in negotiations that eventually helpedsettle a longshoremen's strike that hit East Coast ports in 1962.

In 1963, Mr. Guthrie was named one of the original members of the Baltimore Economic Development Commission. In 1967, he was named to the Board of Examiners of the Association of Maryland Pilots and was chairman from 1972 to 1979.

A noted expert on domestic water carrier transportation and port terminal operations, he often lectured at universities and industry symposiums. From 1958 to 1972, he was an instructor at the University of Baltimore.

During his retirement, Mr. Guthrie served as a consultant for industry concerns and wrote a monthly column, "It May Interest You to Know," published in the Baltimore Traffic Club magazine. In 1981, he wrote and published a book, "Automation on the Waterfront."

Born in New York, he attended parochial schools in the Hell's Kitchen district of the city and attended the High School of Commerce. During his years in Baltimore, Mr. Guthrie and his family lived in Bel Air.

Mr. Guthrie enjoyed sports and was an avid golfer at Maryland Golf and Country Club and Winters Run Golf Course. He sang with St. Dominic's choir in Baltimore and later was a cantor with St. Margaret Church in Bel Air.

Survivors include his wife of 52 years, the former Claire B. Ray; a son, John F. Guthrie of Towson; five daughters, Kathleen M. Swentzel of Joppatowne, Patricia M. Ruane and Theresa M. Thomas, both of Davidsonville, Claire B. Howard of Perry Hall and Gigi Kurowski of Bel Air; two brothers, Michael J. Guthrie of Long Island, N.Y., and Francis J. Guthrie of Naples, Fla.; a sister, Rita Cusick of Brooklyn, N.Y., and 20 grandchildren.

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