Bremen class (1903)

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Bremen class
SMS Bremen
SMS Bremen
Ship data
country German EmpireGerman Empire (Reichskriegsflagge) German Empire
Ship type Small cruiser
Construction period 1902 to 1907
Launch of the type ship July 9, 1903
Units built 7th
period of service 1904 to 1927
Ship dimensions and crew
111.1 m ( Lüa )
110.6 m ( KWL )
width 13.3 m
Draft Max. 5.53 m
displacement Construction: 3,278 t
Maximum: 3,797 t
crew 288 to 349 men
Machine system
machine 10 marine boilers,
2 3-cylinder compound machines
12,100 hp (8,900 kW)
23.3 kn (43 km / h)
propeller 2 four-wing ⌀ 3.9 m
SMS Lübeck 4 four-wing ⌀ 1.6 m and 1.75 m
  • Deck: 20-80 mm
  • Coam: 100 mm
  • Command tower: 20–100 mm
  • Shields: 50 mm

The Bremen -class , sometimes also referred to as the Hamburg -class, was a class of small cruisers of the Imperial Navy , which were built as supplementary structures within the framework of the naval laws . The seven ships belonging to it were named after German cities and established a tradition of naming in the German Navy that continues to this day.


The Bremen class was designed as an official draft in 1901/02 and 1903. It was an evolutionary development with slightly larger dimensions and increased drive power from the previous Gazelle class to increase the speed to 22 knots. The increased number of boilers to ten led to a construction with three chimneys. In contrast to the other units, SMS Lübeck was the first German warship to have a turbine drive at the same time as a smaller torpedo boat ( S 125 ).


The two ships SMS Leipzig and SMS Danzig , built according to the official draft in 1903, can be distinguished from their sister ships by the vertical, non-jacketed chimneys (otherwise with a slight fall to the aft) and the foremast integrated into the bridge , which is the one in front of the bridge on the older sister ships was set up. During the reconstruction of Lübeck in 1916, in addition to the two newly installed 15 cm guns, the foremast was integrated into the bridge while enlarging it. In addition, the antiquated ram bow, which was replaced by a cruiser stem (similar to that of the modern small cruisers), was omitted. The chimneys were replaced by fully jacketed vertical ones. The Bremen was also rebuilt in a similar form in 1914. However, the chimneys were only half-sheathed and the stem was designed as on the small cruisers of the Kolberg class .


The (first) Königsberg class , which followed the Bremen class , was designed in 1903/04 and 1904/1905 and consisted of four small cruisers of the Imperial Navy . The ship names of the four were again German cities.

In Dirk van den Boom's novel series Kaiserkrieger, the fictional eighth cruiser Saarbrücken gets caught in a mysterious fog in the past of the Roman Empire in AD 378 in 1914.The crew decides to help the then Emperor Gratian in the defense of the empire and correct some mistakes in history.


  • Erwin Strohbusch: Warship building since 1848 . German Maritime Museum, Bremerhaven 1984.
  • Erich Gröner , Dieter Jung and Martin Maass: The German Warships 1815–1945 Volume 1 . Bernard & Graefe Verlag, Munich 1982, ISBN 3-7637-4800-8 .

Web links

Commons : Bremen -class  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files


  1. ^ After Hildebrand: Königsberg single ship, ordered as a Bremen class cruiser , then plan changed;
    Nuremberg class with Stuttgart and Stettin higher displacement and another 2 m longer