Bremer Vulkan file photo [28930]

Bremer Vulkan AG

Type   Shipyard
Historical Name of Location   Bremen, Weser-Ems, Germany

Contributor:

ww2dbaseIn Jan 1805, Johann Lange began to build various vessels in Vegesack district in northern Bremen, Germany. In Sep of the same year, the city's senate authorized him to establish the J. Lange Shipyard at the harbor entrance; J. Lange Shipyard's first ship, Die Weser, was launched in 1816. In Feb 1817, the first German River Steamboat, Weser, entered service. In 1893, the company was reorganized into Bremer Vulkan Schiffbau und Maschinen Fabrik AG, a limited company. In 1895, it purchased an additional 100,000 square meters of land for building four slips of varying dimensions. Between Sep 1896 and Oct 1899, the firms North German Lloyd and Hamburg-American issued building orders, necessitating Bremer Vulkan to modernize and expand even further; work done during this time included the upgrading of existing slips, the addition of two new slips (completed in 1902), the addition of 225,000 square meters of land purchased to expand the shipyard which expanded the waterfront to about 1,500 meters in length, and the building of new shops including iron working, copper smiths, foundries, machine shops, and finally the addition of the most modern electrically operated cranes. Between 1908 and 1910, business slowed, and the work force was reduced from 2,400 to 800 and production was reduced by about 75%. Business turned for the better in 1911, however, as the naval race with the United Kingdom translated to new contracts for Bremer Vulkan. By 1913, the number of employees reach 3,600, and Bremer Vulkan passed AG Vulcan Stettin as Germany's top shipyard. In 1914, the 14,167 gross registered tonnage passenger ship Zeppelin, the largest ship built to date, was launched. In 1915, the German Navy placed an order for 11 minesweepers; seven to be built in 1916 and four in 1918. Bremer Vulkan also partnered with Germaniawerft of Kiel, Germany to build a number of submarines. In 1917, Hamburg-American placed orders for 12 steamers. In 1928, the shipyard launched the C. O. Stillman, the world's largest tanker to date. Between 1934 and 1945, the shipyard had plans to build one to two Type IA submarines a month, but several factors, not least of them being the Anglo-German Naval Agreement, precluded their construction. By the end of 1938, over 70% of new orders were coming from abroad. In Apr 1939, the cancellation of the Anglo-German Naval Agreement gave Germany a free reign in developing and building warships, and Bremer Vulkan would receive orders for the building of Type VII submarines (two of which were actually built before the agreement's cancelation). During the war, Bremer Vulkan's subsidiary Vegesackerwerft GmbH would build 74 Type VII submarines in total, with the final boat delivered to the German Navy in May 1944. In Mar 1943, USAAF bombers raided Bremen; although most of the bombs missed and struck civilian buildings instead, it nevertheless shut down submarine production for a number of weeks. Bremer Vulkan made used of forced laborer from concentration camps during the war. At its largest size during WW2, Bremer Vulkan occupied about 332,000 square meters of land. After the war, the shipyard was allowed to resume production in 1949. The company began to reach its zenith in the 1970s, and in the 1980s it merged with other shipbuilders to become a major shipbulider in the world. After the East-West German reunification, it grew even larger as it acquired shipyards in the former East Germany. Mismanagement, however, led to the company's bankruptcy in 1997, leading to its break up.

Last Major Update: Sep 2019

Ships Constructed at Bremer Vulkan AG

Ship NameYard NoSlip/Drydock NoOrderedLaid DownLaunchedCompleted
H (Planned)1 Aug 1939
U-1337 Aug 1939
U-251VI
U-287VI
Coronel75413 Aug 19381 Dec 1942
Atlantis736III1 Jan 193716 Dec 19371 Jan 1938
U-7312 Jun 19385 Nov 193927 Jul 194030 Sep 1940
U-7422 Jun 19385 Nov 193931 Aug 194031 Oct 1940
U-7532 Jun 193815 Dec 193918 Oct 194019 Dec 1940
U-7642 Jun 193828 Dec 19393 Oct 19403 Dec 1940
U-77525 Jan 193928 Mar 194023 Nov 194018 Jan 1941
U-78625 Jan 193928 Mar 19407 Dec 194015 Feb 1941
U-79725 Jan 193917 Apr 194025 Jan 194113 Mar 1941
U-80825 Jan 193917 Apr 194011 Feb 19418 Apr 1941
U-81III25 Jan 193911 May 194022 Feb 194126 Apr 1941
U-821025 Jan 193915 May 194015 Mar 194114 May 1941
U-132117 Aug 193910 Aug 194010 Apr 194129 May 1941
U-1347 Aug 19396 Sep 194017 May 194126 Jul 1941
U-135VI7 Aug 193916 Sep 194012 Jun 194116 Aug 1941
U-1367 Aug 19392 Oct 19405 Jul 194130 Aug 1941
U-1280VI22 Sep 194217 Sep 1943
U-1282VI22 Sep 194220 Oct 1943

* Projected dates; not actual

Slip/Drydock Utilization

[Con]: Construction; [FO]: Fitting Out



Bremer Vulkan AG Interactive Map

Bremer Vulkan AG Timeline

21 Sep 1805 The Senate of Bremen, Germany authorized Johann Lange to build a shipyard in the Vegesack district opposite side from the harbor entrance. Lange would name the shipyard after himself.
29 Jan 1895 Bremer Vulkan of Germany purchased an additional 100,000 square meters of land for building four slips.
19 Sep 1896 North German Lloyd and Hamburg-American began to issue orders to Bremer Vulkan, thus necessitating a large expansion period for the German shipbuilder.
9 Jun 1914 The 14,167 gross registered tonnage passenger ship Zeppelin, the largest ship built to date by Bremer Vulkan of Germany, was launched.
10 Aug 1940 The keel of U-132 was laid down at the Bremer Vulkan shipyard in Bremen, Germany.
10 Apr 1941 U-132 was launched at the Bremer Vulkan shipyard in Bremen, Germany.
25 Jun 1942 Sir Arthur Harris of the RAF Bomber Command launched the third Thousand Bomber Raid, this time sending 1,067 aircraft (including some aircraft from Coastal Command and Army Cooperation Command) to attack Bremen, Germany; only 696 reported successfully reaching the city. The RAF Bomber Command lost 48 aircraft, half of which had inexperienced crews recruited from training squadrons flying worn out aircraft; the RAF Coastal Command lost 5 aircraft. 572 houses were destroyed, 6,108 were damaged. 85 were killed, while 497 were wounded and 2,378 were made homeless. An assembly shop at the Focke-Wulf factory was destroyed, while the Bremer Vulkan shipyard and nearby docks and warehouses were also damaged.
19 Jul 1942 99 British bombers (40 Halifax, 31 Stirling, and 28 Lancaster) were launched to attack the Vulkan submarine yard at Vegesack district of Bremen, Germany; most bombs missed the shipyard; 3 bombers were lost on this mission.
18 Mar 1943 USAAF aircraft bombed the Vegesack district of Bremen, Germany. Most of the bombs missed the Bremer Vulkan shipyard, striking civilian facilities instead. 108 were killed and over 100 were wounded.

Photographs

A badly retouched photograph of the St. Louis being launched from Slip IV of Bremer Vulkan shipyard, Germany, 2 Aug 1928Overhead view of Bremer Vulkan slips and equipping pier, Bremen, Germany, date unknown

Maps

Bremer Vulkan shipyard drawing, circa 1886Bremer Vulkan shipyard drawing, 1907




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Modern Day Location
WW2-Era Place Name Bremen, Weser-Ems, Germany
Lat/Long 53.1739, 8.5995
Bremer Vulkan AG Photo Gallery
A badly retouched photograph of the St. Louis being launched from Slip IV of Bremer Vulkan shipyard, Germany, 2 Aug 1928
See all 2 photographs of Bremer Vulkan AG




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