German School Ship Association

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On January 12, 1900, the German School Ship Association was founded in Berlin with the aim of training young seafarers for German merchant shipping .


Training ship Germany in Bremen-Vegesack

Previously, the North German Lloyd (NDL) had already put the sailing training ship Herzogin Sophie Charlotte in motion. The association was entered in the register of associations in Oldenburg in March 1900 . Grand Duke Friedrich August von Oldenburg acted as patron and the German Kaiser Wilhelm II donated 5,000 marks as support. Over 200 important representatives from shipping circles, politics and trade supported the establishment and became members.

Chairman of the association was Siegfried Graf von Roedern , who is also the chairman of the German Shipowners' Association was. The director of the Bremen Maritime School , Professor Dr. Carl Schilling was elected, who subsequently promoted training on sailing school ships.

Advertisement for the feature film Two Blue Boys , Germany 1917

In 1917, the association produced the feature film Two Blue Boys , some of which were shot on board the Grand Duke Friedrich August school ship .

Although the port was too small, Oldenburg officially became the home port of the ships, and Elsfleth was used as the base. The training contribution that the parents of the cabin boys had to pay was 250 marks.

The last ship of the association, the Schulschiff Deutschland , was used until July 2001 as a boarding school accommodation ship for trainees who wanted to become a ship mechanic in the German shipping industry. Today the ship, still owned by the German School Ship Association, serves as a tourist attraction and is used as a restaurant and hotel for conferences, parties, weddings and baptisms.

The current chairman of the association is Claus Jäger .


The Grand Duchess Elizabeth in 1913, all sails set


  • J. Wessel / WR Kannowski: Sailing training ships from German shipyards , lecture on February 24, 2010 on the Cap San Diego , Yearbook of the Shipbuilding Society 2010
  • Gerhard Eckhardt: The sailing ships of the German training ship association. A documentation , Bremen (Hauschild) 1981. ISBN 3-920699-37-8

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