December 3, 1881

A commitee of traders in Bremen and Bremerhaven come together for a constitutional general meeting and found the

Deutsche Dampfschifffahrts-Gesellschaft "HANSA"

headquartered in Bremen. The purpose of this company  DDG Hansa is the construction of regular shipping lines.
The traders intended to put steamboats into operation, steam vessels of about 2500 - 3000 tons for a "world-wide service",  steamers of about 1200 - 1500 tons for a "Mediterranian service" and steamboats of about 600 tons for a "Baltic Sea service".



In 1882 three large steam vessels were bought in Great Britain and one smaller steamboat was ordered in Germany.
Until the beginning of the First World War the fleet was continuously built up by the management of the shipping company merchant

Oltmann Johann Dietrich Ahlers
from Elsfleth. In the history of the company only one steamboat got the name of a person, it was the O.J.D. AHLERS.

August 1, 1914

The beginning of the First World War immediately interrupted the steamer service lines.
The fleet of the DDG Hansa consisted of 68 steam vessels and one motor ship when the war broke out.
Additionally there was a fleet of tugs, sea barges and barges for coastal and harbour service.
Many steam vessels were captured or interned. Only a few steam boats remained within the German territory.

November 11, 1918

After the signing of the armistice all steam vessels including newbuildings (even the steamer GEIERFELS (1), ready in June 1920) had to be deposited. The company only had left the small steamboat SONECK (2), the barge fleet and the steam tugs.

The rebuilding of the steamer fleet began with the FRAUENFELS (1), completed in 1921. The lines could gradually be started too. In 1921 an extensive reconstruction programme was started, altogether 12 ships including the STURMFELS (2). The first large motor ships were given back to the company starting with the ROLANDSECK (2) from the year 1912 and the SCHWARZENFELS (3), delivered in 1925. In 1929 heavy goods transport service began with the delivery of the steam vessel LICHTENFELS (2). The ship had the useful piece of equipment, a derrick of 120 tons lift capacity. Before the Second World War further eight large motor ships of the EHRENFELS - class were delivered and  in 1940 the MOLTKEFELS (2) was added.

September 1, 1939

The Second World War again interrupted the arduous reconstruction of the fleet. All the line-services were stopped. A large number of vessels was sent to the bottom, were captured or interned in neutral ports. The DDG Hansa fleet consisted of 31 steam vessels, 13 motor vessels and 37 barges and tenders for harbour service. Up to the armistice quite a number of ships were built on German yards as replacements for the lost ships. Shipping companies were founded to do the managing of the ships for the German government (Deutsches Reich). The need for transport volume was larger than in the First World War.

Mai 8, 1945

After the Second World War all the steamers and motor vessels had been withdrawn from the DDG Hansa. Until the end of 1949 only the sea barge and coastal ship IRAN and IRAK were in the possession of the company. The Petersberg Resolution (Petersberger Abkommen) was loosened at the end of 1949 and so the reconstruction of the fleet could start again. The first large steamer ARGENFELS (3) could be engaged already in 1950. The reconstruction made great progress. In 1954 the first ship of the "Picasso-class", the LICHTENFELS (3), was delivered by the yard. The next even larger classes were  the W - class and the WN - class. The last conventional   freighters  were used in 1970 for the first time.  From this class the   GOLDENFELS (5) was delivered as a semi-container ship and the GEYERFELS  was delivered as a complete container ship. A new generation of container/ roll -on-roll-off-ships was started and put into the fleet  by the use of the   RABENFELS (4)  in 1977.



Attempts in other fields of navigation were started with more or less success. The KATTENTURM (4) was the first supply vessel for oil rigs or sea construction sites put into the fleet. Until the breakdown the DDG Hansa added more than 50 supply vessels to the service. In this area a co-operation took place between the Deutschen Dampfschifffahrts-Gesellschaft "HANSA", Bremen and the Vereinigten Tanklager und Transpormittel GmbH (VTG), Hamburg and the Offshore Marine Ltd., Rochester / Great Britain. The new company was the Offshore Supply Association Ltd. (OSA), London. But after five years the OM left the OSA again.

August 18, 1980

In 1976 the distribution of dividends was about 12%. In 1977 however dividends could not be paid any longer. The losses went up higher and higher, starting from 1978, and on August 18, 1980 the company was compelled to apply for the opening of insolvency proceedings at the court ( Amtsgericht Bremen). Consequently the services and lines were stopped and the ships were sold. A winding-up arrangement was finished on July 3, 1989 at a rate of about 60 %.

December 31, 1989

The DDG Hansa joint-stock company in a liquidation process was deleted  from the register of companies (Handelsregister Bremen).

Management centre

The DDG Hansa  management centre    An der Schlachte 6


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