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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 12th, 2020, 5:29 pm
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emperor_andreas wrote: *
My guess is that since the Marconi service was also available to passengers, it was easier to have the shack placed in an area accessible to the passengers, so as to keep them away from crew-only areas like the bridge.
Wow... that sounds logical! Never thought of that... Thanks a lot!


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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 12th, 2020, 5:59 pm
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You know that I like to take a design which pleases me and begin to imagine how I would have done that same project, and for which purpose. Now, having begun here a full story of an imaginary shipping line of Northern Germany, the roots of which are described in the first post, I began "to feel" the real stories these ocean liners went through. From transporting in the biggest comfort possible noble families of Europe to the USA, rich industrial tycoons and their families, down to people not able to afford more than 3d class cabins and... a term I didn't even know it existed: steerage. And I began to read quite a lot about the conditions aboard these ships, be it for the "upper classes" (now I know where the term comes from...), or to those poor people spending their last money to barely be able to pay the voyage for their family and having to take something to eat and to drink by themselves. And this reminds me of a German family living here where I live, in Portugal, who wanted in the beginning of the XX century to travel from Hamburg to Southern Brazil but the money they had could afford them only to reach this port, not even half the distance... At least there was already a German colony here, which took care of them... It is this kind of stories which pop up in my mind when dedicating myself to the drawing of the ships...

I started today a new type for "Burmester & Stavenhagen", the "Bäder-Schiffe" (the thermal ships, I think) six units named by the most known thermal towns in Germany. In my AU, they were acquired for taking a bigger number of passengers over the oceans, as well as freight, to make the business profitable, since the previous group of steamers (the "Rio Madeira line essencially with several sub-variants) were too small to be profitable on longer routes (aquisition and operating costs too high for the revenue obtained).

Here I show you "Bad Segeberg", a vessel of 145,8 meter overall, 17,5 meter wide and a draft of 10,85 m, having a displacement of 8.200 tonnes. Propulsion was made by the usual way of those times, in this case two triple expansion steam engines with steam coming from 12 coal fired watertube boilers and geared to one shaft driving a four bladed screw. Normal travelling speed was 14 knots, maximum could be 16,8 knots. These ships could accomodate 162 First Class passenger, 198 Second Class and 1.180 Third Class or steerage, because B&S refused to take aboard passengers without being accomodated in cabins. Even poor people paying their travel with work done aboard (kitchen service, laundry or men feeding coal to the boilers) had a sleeping berth guaranteed obviously with access to WC and washing facilities. Accomodations for the steerage was made either in six berth cabins or in 16 to 24 berth compartments, depending on the fare paid.

The finished ship, as launched in 1906 at Vulcan AG, Bremen.

[ img ]

Bad Segeberg got between 1910 and 1914 four sister ships, named "Bad Aibling, Bad Wörishofen, Bad Homburg and finally Bad Kissingen. The first class was a little bit below the level of the one offered on the bigger ships of the company, mainly regarding the space of the socialising rooms (library, men's playing room, ladies' reading room, bar, lounge and dining room. Also no gym or inside pool) but the service offered was equal. The fares obviously were slightly lower also. The same can be said from the second class accomodations. Some of the ships had the third class accomodations converted into rooms for the steerage, as explained above. One item the shipping company became famous for was the fact that the steerage was served in a canteen at noontime a bread with ham or a sausage and a soup at 8 o'clock in the evening. The consequence was that the ships sailed always fully booked, at least in the voyage to the USA (New York or Boston)


Last edited by Cargil48 on September 19th, 2020, 10:59 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 13th, 2020, 5:25 pm
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History

"Immigrants came in waves, many to find work in the United States, and others to escape upheavals in their own countries. Between 1880 and 1930, more than 27 million people made the journey from around the world. Ocean liners were filled in both directions, as millions also returned to their home countries. A much smaller number of businesspeople and leisure travelers crossed the oceans on steamships. By 1870, more than 90 percent of immigrants to America arrived by steamship. As vessels grew safer, larger, sturdier, and faster, ocean crossings became less of an ordeal.

In the same period, the American economy prospered and a class of wealthy Americans was eager to travel in luxury. Steamship companies designed their finest accommodations with these passengers in mind. High style and high society made ocean liners famous, but the ships relied on the immigrant trade as their main source of income into the 1920s. Rich and poor crossed the ocean just a few decks apart.

In 1871, Hamburg-America Line (later Hapag) steamers alone carried 4,200 cabin passengers and 24,500 steerage passengers into New York. The Frisia, launched by the company the following year, brought nearly 47,000 immigrants to the United States between 1872 and 1885."

The pace and incidence of improvements to oceanic travel conditions for American immigrants, during the quarter century preceeding the First World War, were significantly constrained by shipping lines’ capacity considerations. The improvements had no detectable impact on the overall volume of migration, but did influence the flow by route and, probably, the frequency of repeat crossings. Data gathered from transatlantic shipping sources quantify the evolution of travel accommodations for migrants, as “closed berth” cabins, for two to eight passengers each, slowly supplanted older and less comfortable “open-berth” dormitory style quarters. By 1900, roughly 20% of North Atlantic second and steerage (third) class passenger capacity was in closed berths; by 1914, 35%. Steerage alone went from about 10% to 24% closed berths.

The nineteenth century transportation revolution that is commonly and logically associated with powerful and sustained growth in global long distance goods trade, had more modest though still noteworthy impacts on long distance passenger movements. Across the
North Atlantic core of the burgeoning belle epoque global economy, some fourteen million migrants from a labor-supplying Old World took advantage of generally safe, reliable and regular oceanic transit links, during the years 1890-1914, in order to pursue economic opportunities in an industrializing United States. This relocation was undoubtedly assisted by the then newly extended network of railways connecting remoter regions of inland Europe to its Atlantic ports, although it is not easy to isolate this travel facilitation from other factors, notably the tremendous growth of short term, lowskilled industrial and urban employment in America which enabled a long distance mass
migration overwhelmingly self-financed and self-insured through family networks.

Transoceanic mass migration to and from and to the United States during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was a major demographic phenomenon carried out by a complex transnational travel business. Over the quarter century following 1890, transatlantic passenger steamships became cheaper to operate due to deployment of more-efficient engines requiring less coal, and these efficiencies were passed on to the traveling public not by way of lower fares, but through more space per passenger. A range of evidence indicates that this additional space was used to help reduce the discomforts of the oceanic traverse for all categories of travellers, including migrants.

Writing in 1906, based on observations from some years earlier, Edward Steiner variously decried the steerage of unbearable air, “miserable” food, and violations of privacy amongst passengers “packed like a cattle” in a travel class that “ought to be condemned as unfit for the transportation of human beings".

These excerts show us a bit of the history of the "shadow life" of the big, majestic ocean liners, associated to glamour and excentricity of the wealth and super-rich passengers, but which had a vast majority of poor people travelling to the USA mainly, seeking for a new life they hoped would be a bit easier and with more financial reward than the one they had lived so far in their homelands back in Europe. I think it is a "must" to show this reality here, while having a look at the designs of these beautiful ships.


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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 14th, 2020, 12:18 pm
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Let's begin now with the way how Burmester & Stavenhagen began their ownership of big, merchant ships. The first six ships were sailing brigantines for merchant use mainly in the Baltic Sea. In that era (second half of the XIX century) maritime traffic was intense and in all three major oceans, the Atlantic, the Indian and the Pacific. Passenger, goods, raw materials and several trade items as well as tons of mail and personal packages were sent all over the world, then mostly dominated by European major empires.

Pushed in their pride as international merchants of the proud city of Hamburg by the success of competing merchant houses, the Burmester and the Stavenhagen families decided to expand their business to try to catch up with that boom in international maritime travel and trade. This said, they ordered in 1875 at the shipyard Joh. C. Tecklenborg, Bremerhaven a full rigged, three mast barque, to be christened with the name of Elizabeth Burmester a sister of Hermann Heinrich Burmester, who had commercial business in Oporto, Portugal, as said already before, speaking of the birth of another (real) shipping line, the OPDR.

Elizabeth Burmester is a steel-hulled full rigged ship that was built in 1876. She is representative of several different commercial ventures, including wine, Portwine, coffee beans, tea, corn, rice, wool, cotton, raw rubber, case oil, cattle hides, nitrate from Chile among other items and, of course, immigrants as steerage mainly to southern Brazil and Argentina. She was 98m long at the waterline, had a 12,8 m beam and draft of 7,2m. Tonnage was 1.690 GT with a displacement of some 4.200 tons.

[ img ]

Elizabeth Burmester proved the strategy of Burmester & Stavenhagen correct and the company decided to buy other ships of the same kind, even when steam cargo ships began reigning the oceans. However, a well built sailing barque, three or four masted, with a good crew and a good captain, was still able to travel around the world in profitable terms. This first sailing barque was built for speed, and it soon acquired an excellent reputation for timeliness and reliability, entering in direct competition with the "Flying P-Liner", also from Hamburg. As an example, the five-masted barque Potosi from the shipping company F. Laeisz of Hamburg made the voyage from Chile to England around Cape Horn in 1904 in just 57 days, a record at the time, while the three masted clippers of Burmester & Stavenhagen, with one mast less but some thousand tons lighter, made between 62 and 66 days in direct route to Hamburg or Bremerhaven.

Between 1878 and 1885, four other full sailing ships (square rigged, that is) were taken into service: Frederike Burmester, Olga Burmester, Martha Burmester and finally Nanny Burmester. They were split into diffrerent lines, one for instance sailed primarily to Chile to load nitrates, to Argentina for wool and Brazil for coffee and lumber, taking immigrants on the way south; another ship traded mostly wine, champagne, clothing, home items and all kind of tools from France to the USA and on the way back barrelled oil, bottled light beverages and cotton, another one made primarily the route to the German possessions in overseas (German Southwest or Namibia and German East Africa). One ship, finally, made through the Suez Canal the route to China through Batavia (Dutch possession then) for rubber, tobacco and palm oil, mainly, and some Indian west coast ports for spices.

(AU): Four of the ships are in seaworthy condition today, all having been subject to more or less profound restoration projects. They belong to the Hansebund, a non-profitable honorary historical society with main office in the German city of Lübeck, and legally belonging to the Vogler Financial Trust of Hamburg, namely to the Vogler Foundation. This honorary society is recognized officially by the German state. The ships have been renamed, bearing all the designation "Hansestadt" and then the respective name of the city: Hamburg, Lübeck, Bremen and (since 1998) Danzig. Regarding this latter ship, a letter of understanding between the Hansebund and the Polish state has been made that the ship is allowed to bear its name for historical reasons, its ownership is recognized to belong to said "Bund" (which opened a "Kontor" (office) in Danzig for that purpose), but she must be registred at the Polish city of Danzig and bear at the stern the designation "Gdansk, Polska" under the ship's name.

All four ships participate every year in multiple events, like the Wilhelmshaven Sailing Cup, Hafengeburtstag Hamburg, Baltic Sail, Kieler Woche, The Tall Ship Races, Baltic Sail Gdansk, The Tall Ship Races oif Tallinn, Klaipeda Sea Festival, Karlskrona Archipelago Festival, Hanse Sail Rostock, Lütte Sail Bremerhaven, Tall Ship Races Magellan-Elcano 500, Azores Sailing Week, Tall Ship Races La Coruña, Tall Ship Races Lisbon, Windjammer Days Festival (USA), and some other events (in Southern France and in the Caribbean). The ships participate in the events according to a predefined schedule, sometimes more than one at the same event, and priority to participate aboard is given to young people having earned already their sailing permit in a renown national sailing club. Often members of warships of the German Navy do participate on a strictly private basis, as so-called "helping hands" mainly keeping an eye on the younger sailors aboard and teaching them details on how to handle the big ships.

(My thanks to C. Hofer for his marvellous design on which I based my story here. I've made some small changes, mainly the bow including the bowsprit, the stern including the rudder blade and the shading of the hull.)


Last edited by Cargil48 on September 16th, 2020, 9:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 16th, 2020, 3:01 pm
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Looking for other sailing tall ships I could make part of this AU story, I found a marvellous three masted motorized barquentine which I modified a bit, removing the original funnel and putting in place a big saloon (like I found in the full rigged bark Stadt Amsterdam I had the pleasure to make a short trip off the coast here in Porto). This big saloon has space for some 38 guests in this ship, and in the forward area is the navigation table, the radio and navigation instruments and the digital commands of the ship, separated from the saloon by a wooden wall (in "Stadt Amsterdam" if I recall well, this is one level up).

This barquentine does not belong to the Burmester & Stavenhagen shipping line (which since 1968 is no more, having merged with Hamburg-Süd), but was originally bought in 1952 by the B&S line to be preserved and somewhat modernized. The ship's hull had beenj found in an Argentina harbour in a shape that allowed it to be restored, although that enterprise would cost a considerable amount of money. The original ship had been built in 1896 by Charles Connell and Company of Scotstoun in Glasgow, Scotland, for Robert McMillan, of Dumbarton, Scotland. Designed as a general trader, and according to the existing logbook, the vessel rounded Cape Horn 17 times in thirteen years trading chilean nitrates to European ports. During this period she carried cargoes such as wine, case oil and industrial equipment from Europe and the East Coast of the United States to various ports in the Pacific, taking on the return voyages said nitrates aboard. When the war broke out in 1939, she was left in the Argentinean harbour of Comodoro Rivadavia to shelter her from any damage. It was there that someone from B&S spotted her and reported it to the German administration, knowing of the interest of the owners were looking out for old sail tall ships.

[ img ]

The ship was acquired by B&S and towed all the way to Germany to the Burmester Werft in Bremen (acquired in 1979 by the mighty Lürssen-Werft also from Bremen) belonging to a distant cousin of the Burmester from B&S (Ernst Burmester) and specialized in big sailing ships and yachts. Here the ship was slowly being restored and modernized in both her rigg as well as the propulsion (MAN 9 cylinder Diesel engine installed delivering 630 shp plus two six cylinder Mercedes Diesel engines driving AEG electric generators for 220V electricity). The ship was ready in 1955 after three years of painstaking work and sailed from Hamburg the route to Brazil for coffee, salted cowhides and iron from the now big "Vale do rio Doce" mining company. On the way south the ship transported mainly Diesel locomotives, AEG Diesel generators, agricultural machinery, typoghraphy equipment, Siemens electric transformers, etc.

In 1978 the vessel was sold by B&S to the already mentioned Vogler Financial Trust for a new restoration from top to keel. The interior was redone as a big blue water sailing yacht, with plenty of wood on the inside (mainly mahogany) with accomodation for 28 passenger in double cabins for cruises in the Caribbean and participating every year in the "Tall Ship Races" event. After the modernization works the ship was re-christened Felix Graf Luckner, a maritime legend of the German Navy (Kriegsmarine) in his active years, who had passed away in 1966.

PS: I would not be surprised if some (or many, I don't know) of those who read what I write here do not believe my words on the part based on familiar ties of mine. But, believe it or not, the name of Graf Luckner popped up in my mind because I got to know him in person when I was a lad of 10 years old. This was in 1958 when he travelled through Europe in his motorhome and one day, when the school bell rang at the German school I was in here, an uncle of mine stood at the front door and said to me: "Come with me, Carlos, I'll show you a very important person!" And I remember well seeing the motorhome parked some 50 meter from the school, and me getting in. I remember very, very little an elderly couple aboard said motorhome and many old pictures hanging around... and the name "Seeteufel" was in some of them... This is NOT AU, friends.

PS 2: And now, thinking back in my memories, I recall my uncle always referring to him as Graf Luckner and NOT von Luckner. Was he right? Well, he sitted in front of him for at least an hour, chatting, so he must have known, I guess...


Last edited by Cargil48 on September 19th, 2020, 5:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 16th, 2020, 11:06 pm
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Let's make a jump in time to the beginning of the thirties of last century:

Germany had commercially more or less recovered from the losses suffered in WWI, its mai8n advances were more on the industrial level. Ships were made by more than a dozen shipyards, MAN and Daimler-Benz had developed reliable Diesel engines mainly for trucks and ships (more so the former than the latter, DB concentrating its Diesel technology for trucks, agricultural machines, smaller fishing boats and armoured vehicles for the Army. It also delivered thousands of Diesel engines to Siemens & Halske to power electricity generators of all kinds and power levels. Also for the maritime industry. Almost no ship was built by a German yard not having installed a DB/S&H power generator.

Germany had become a major exporting country, especially building locomotives (Henschel & Sohn), automobiles (Mercedes, Wanderer, Horch, Opel and BMW), airplanes (Junkers, Dornier, Heinkel and Blohm & Voss, one of the leaders in seaplanes together with Dornier), industrial machinery of all kinds, mainly for the mining industries, paper printing equipment , power generating (Siemens and Brown, Boveri Deutschland), railway controlling equipment, textile, clothing and footwear industries and optical and photographic equipment (Leica and Zeiss being the leaders). Germany produced coal in big quantities and steel of very good qualities. Iron had to be imported mainly from Norway, Portugal and Spain (from the vast quantities of the Iberian Pirite Belt). From Portugal came also copper and tungsten for hardening the steel, from Spain Germany imported also vast quatities of copper but also zinc and lead. Since both countries had the chance to be able to transport its raw materials with some ease to shipping ports (Setúbal in Portugal and Huelva in southern Spain), German shipping companies had plenty of material to ship home.

On the political side, however, things were at all so rosy. But this will not be the subject of this topic.

Burmester & Stavenhagen had still, believe it or not, all its sailing vessels operating. The eight full rigged ships or barks took good profit of the winds prevailing in the Atlantic and with its vastly experienced crews and officers sailed mostly between Europe and the Americas. Immigrants continued to flow to the entire American continent, and many preferred the big sailing ships of B&S because the company had found a way to put up a system of collapsible wooden compartments for the cargo holds where wooden berths with matresses could be put together, giving some privacy to the steerage aboard. WC and some washing rooms were also installed amidships but these were fix mounted. The loss of some cargo space on the way back was compensated with the fares of the immigrants on the way West. Some male immigrants found out a clever way to improve somewhat their evening meal: Helping out the ship's crews in handling the sails, they got a tin can of wine or beer together with the soup and bread served. Also these relatively small overcosts were compensated by a slightly higher price of the fares and many of the immigrants accepted this.

Come 1929 and the big crash of the stock exchanges. Suddenly less goods had to be transported and the burned coal or fuel aboard the steamers made the travel expensive, giving the big sailing ships a sudden advantage because wind is for free, always was... Someone at the company got to know the owner of a Spanish yard in Cadiz (Echevarrieta y Larrinaga shipyard), which had already ties with the German Kriegsmarine since 1925, producing mainly torpedoes. This yard was also specialized in building big sailing ships of high quality (Esmeralda and Juan Sebastian de Elcano to name two of the better known. It was therefore not difficult for the Burmester & Stavenhagen company to place in the spring of 1930 an order for two four masted sailing ships equal to both afore mentioned, taking advantage of highly attractive prices (some 30% less than at German shipyards) plus a "goodwill discount" because of the already mentioned lucrative deal made with the German navy for the torpedos and submarine prototypes signed in 1925 with a German navy officer named Canaris.

This is how two identical big sailing ships were built between the years of 1930 and 1932, the second one being delivered in the following year, 1933. Both are four-masted topsail, steel-hulled barquentines (schooner barques), 113 metres long, with a beam of 13,10 meter and a draft of 7 meter. The displacement is some 3.670 tons and the ships have a total sail area of 30.900 sq.ft. allowing for a max. top speed of 17,5 knots. Under engine power (an auxiliary MAN seven cylinder Diesel engine delivering 880 shp to a three bladed screw with controllable pitch blades) the vessels reach some 14,8 knots which are useful especially when sailing through the Doldrums in the Equator region.

This time, the ships got female names of the Stavenhagen family: Amalie Stavenhagen, Jens Stavenhagen's mother, and Ingeborg Stavenhagen, his Danish grandmother.

[ img ]

Both ships were in duty between 1932/33 and 1958/1962 being afterwards anchored in the bay of Cadiz for several years, with occasional service for keeping them seaworthy, until they were subject of a modernization project in 1966 and 1968 to be leased to the Spanish navy for training cadets, one with homeport at Cadiz, the other one at Vigo. Spain had in those times exchange agreements with several Latin American spanish speaking countries which had been Middle and South American Spanish colonies, to train their navy cadets to make them know Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Southwest Asia and its main ports. In 1988 respectively 1990, both ships returned to its owning company and underwent a new modernization project, this time to accomodate again sea cadets (civil, this time) but also paying guests, these having 16 double cabins with wet areas at their disposal, an ample saloon, a dining room and a bar.

The ships have as home port Kiel and Lübeck and participate in the same sailing events as her "older sisters".


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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 18th, 2020, 6:01 pm
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Next in line: The first steam ship of the company and the trade with Brazil in the turn of the XIX and XX centuries. To be published here in a couple of days.

History:

"The great wave of European immigration that began around 1880 overlapped with the rise of major steamship lines that competed for immigrant fares. By 1900, the average price of a steerage ticket was about $30. Many immigrants traveled on prepaid tickets sent by relatives already in America; others bought tickets from the small army of traveling salesmen employed by the steamship lines. Before boarding their ship, emigrants went through a processing that included being bathed and "de-loused." Between 1845 and 1850, a devastating fungus destroyed Ireland's potato crop. During these years, starvation and related diseases claimed as many as a million lives, while perhaps twice that number of Irish immigrated — 500,000 of them to the United States, where they accounted for more than half of all immigrants in the 1840s. Between 1820 and 1975, 4.7 million Irish settled in America. In 2002, more than 34 million Americans considered themselves to be of Irish ancestry, making Irish Americans the country's second-largest ethnic group."

"Italian emigration was fueled by dire poverty. Life in Southern Italy, including the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, offered landless peasants little more than hardship, exploitation, and violence. Even the soil was poor, yielding little, while malnutrition and disease were widespread. By 1870, there were about 25,000 Italian immigrants in America, many of them Northern Italian refugees from the wars that accompanied the Risorgimento—the struggle for Italian unification and independence from foreign rule. Between around 1880 and 1924, more than four million Italians immigrated to the United States, half of them between 1900 and 1910 alone—the majority fleeing grinding rural poverty in Southern Italy and Sicily. Today, Americans of Italian ancestry are the nation's fifth-largest ethnic group."

"On Tuesday the Tapajoz, a new iron vessel, just completed by Mr. Laird, for the Amazon Steam Navigation Company, sailed from Liverpool for Oporto. Portugal to take on board 300 Portuguese emigrants, who are to be located on the banks of the Amazon. The Tapajoz, built expressly for the Amazon navigation, is 200 feet long, 27 feet beam, 12 feet deep, and about 760 tons old measurement. She is fitted by Fawcett and Co. with a pair of engines of 200-horse power, feathering wheels, and all the latest improvements. The company for which the Tapajoz has been built has, it is stated, received a grant from the Brazilian Government of 30,000 pounds a year for the regular and efficient navigation of that river."

March 16, 1885, Daily Alta California, San Francisco, California, U.S.A.

"One of the most attractive countries for immigrants in these times is Brazil. When the Emperor opened the legislative bodies a short time ago, he delivered a speech in which he reviewed the condition of Brazil; and, in referring to the growth of the population, he spoke proudly of the fact that 131,000 immigrants had entered its ports last year, and said that this influx of population was favored by his Government. He told of the prosperity of Brazil, and of its industrial development, and of its educational advancement, and of the soundness of its finances. Altogether it is a hopeful state of things which the Emperor of Brazil describes without boasting, and he says that the Government will continue to promote the economic and social transformation now in progress there."

The Port of Rio Grande, located on the Rio Grande River in southern Brazil about eight miles from the mouth of the river, is the state's oldest city and one of the most important ports in Brazil. Built on a low-lying peninsula, it is little more than 1.5 meters above sea level. The mouth of the river was dredged to allow ocean-going vessels to dock in the Port of Rio Grande.
Its exports go primarily to other parts of Brazil and include beef jerky, hides, wool, tobacco, lard, wheat, rice, beans, and fish and shrimp. The city s industries include fisheries, canneries, meat-processing plants, textile mills, and a petroleum refinery and oil terminal.
It was the state capital for a time in the mid-1800s. Being the second busiest port in Brazil, it has become one of the richest cities in the state of Rio Grade do Sul."

New York Sun

"The Amazon Rubber Boom, 1879 to 1912, was an important part of the economic and social history of Brazil and Amazonian regions of neighboring countries, being related to the extraction and commercialization of rubber. Centered in the Amazon Basin, the boom resulted in a large expansion of European colonization in the area, attracting immigrant workers, generating wealth, causing cultural and social transformations, and wreaking havoc upon indigenous societies. It encouraged the growth of cities such as Manaus and Belém, capitals within the respective Brazilian states of Amazonas and Pará, among many other cities throughout the region like Itacoatiara, Rio Branco, Eirunepé, Marabá, Cruzeiro do Sul and Altamira; as well as the expansion of Iquitos in Peru and Cobija in Bolivia. The rubber boom occurred largely between 1879 and 1912."

In 1898, Burmester & Stavenhagen entered an agreement with the five years earlier founded shipyard "Vulcan-Werft AG" at Bremen-Vegesack for eight steam ships for mixed use: mainly cargo in four holds (two front, two aft), but also simple accomodations for 22 to 36 passenger in the so-called "travel class" ("Reiseklasse") and some 120 to 400 steerage passenger in six berth cabins with common shared sanitary installations. The ships were to be made with gross tonnages between 3.000 and 5.000 tons and have an installed power by steam expansion engines (with either one or two shafts) allowing a travel speed of 12 knots. These ships were intended to cross the Atlantic in safe conditions, either linking German ports to North America, either to Brazi

The first of such ships was christened "Rio Madeira" for one of the biggest affluents of the Amazon river, in Brazil. One of the destinations in Brazil was the port of the growing town of Manaus, the ships entering the basin of this mighty river taking mostly Portuguese immigrants to that area (Belém do Pará, Santarém, Óbidos, Boa Vista, Porto Alto, etc.) and loading for the return voyage timber and natural rubber.

[ img ]

This vessel had a length of 86 meter, a beam of 12,4 meter and a draft (at full load) of 9,4 meter. It had a gross tonnage of 2.826 tons and a propulsion made by a triple expansion steam engine delivering 1.360 shp on one shaft driving a four bladed screw. This ship could travel up the Amazon river and his main subsidiaries, rio Negro and rio Branco, where the main rubber plantations were working and also where timber was prepared for shipment.

Rio Madeira was one of the ships of the company to stop at the Portuguese port of Leixões, one of the main embarkment ports for Portuguese emigrants to Brazil. (Note: Emigrants with E because here it is referred to those leaving their homeland; Immigrants are thosse arriving at a new destination). It was also the main Portuguese port chosen by immigrants either returning home after some time in Brazil (to say it openly: When the slave trade ended), either to visit relatives when they could afford such a luxus...

Rio Madeira got two identical sister ships: Rio Branco and Rio Negro. The other five ships to fulfill the order were bigger and will be treated here as well.

Worklist: Rio Araguaya, flagship of its class (5.000 t steamer), followed by the Rio Tocantins, the Rio Xingú, Rio Putumayo and finally the Rio Tigre.


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Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: September 20th, 2020, 1:24 pm
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The "Rio Araguaya" was more than a class above the three smaller "sisters" although the general layout was similar, middle section with three levels, one for the command area, the next one for officer and "Travel Classs" passenger cabins, carrying 48 people, socializing room, smoking room and dining room, one level below were accomodations for 128 3d class passenger in cabins with either four or six berths, with the usual double cargo holds fore and aft. Steerage was transported in one of the empty cargo holds (no problem on the way south...) and varied between 400 and 650 additional people, sometimes picked up at Porto's Leixões harbour.

The ship was 126 meters long and 17 meters wide (about 400 feet by 56 feet) with a gross tonnage of 5,261. She was propelled by two 2,800hp triple-expansion steam engines driven by six high pressure boilers, double screw, with her speed being 13,8 knots at full load, 17,6 kn at half load.

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SS Araguaya entered service in 1900, her sister ship Rio Tocantins also. Rio Xingú followed in 1902 and Rio Putomayo one year later, in 1905. Since the line from Hamburg (or Bremen) grew consistently after the three smaller units entered service a few years earlier, Burmester & Stavenhagen felt the need to have "in situ" a delegation to handle all the proceedings in an expedite way, not exactly "the Brazilian style"... Several gentlemen lived in Porto, having made fortune in Brazil. Hermann Burmester, who continued to have his ties in this city, invited one of these gentlemen, a Mister Sá Ribeiro, to go with him to Belém do Pará, the main city at the mouth of the mighty Amazon river, where he had close relatives. With him, Hermann Burmester founded a Brazilian registred shipping company, CNA - Companhia de Navegação da Amazónia, Lda.. Mister Sá Ribeiro opened with time passing agencies in most local villages where the ships of B&S had to moore. As part of the company's capital, Hermann Burmester bought the ship Rio Madeira and incorporated it into the new company. Later, Rio Branco and Rio Negro followed representing capital increases of the company. At Belém do Pará, the CNA, Lda. company built three warehouses to stock goods as needed, mainlu natural rubber and timber already prepared for shipment.

Speaking of timber, Burmester & Stavenhagen were the first, in 1912, to ship from the USA to Belém do Pará ten "Lombard Log Hauler", a recent invention of an US citizen, Alvin Lombard, a blacksmith building logging equipment in Waterville, Maine. The tractor machines resembled steam locomotives but had continuous tracks instead of wheels to provide traction and in front a small platform with two large wheels which where driven by a vertically mounted steering wheel. These machines proved essencial to improve timber work in the muddy lands of the Amazon basin and Hermann Burmester and his partner Sá Ribeiro obtained the permit from Mr. Lombard to build this type of machine in Brazil, for a fee on each one built and also to register Mr. Lombard's US patent in Brazil, as well as Mr. Lombard's permit for the two gentlemen to build under license the machines in Brazil.

Before ending this part of the story, let me show you a design of one of the four masted tall ships of the "Hanse Bund" to which the preserved sailing ships of "Burmester & Stavenhagen" have been donated when the shipping company was taken oiver as said above. As said also, the "Hanse Bund" belongs to the "Vogler Financial Trust" from the Vogler and Stockfleth families of Hamburg, Germany.

Not yet ready, plenty of details to work on... (as well as on other ships...)

[ img ]

Updated on Oct. 16, 2020


Last edited by Cargil48 on October 16th, 2020, 5:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cargil48
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: October 13th, 2020, 1:41 pm
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Part Two

In the first decennium of the XX century, Burmester & Stavenhagen from Germany grew consistently, as more or less detailed told above. Together with Hapag and Hamburg-Südamerika Dampfschiffahrt Ges. they represented "the big three" shipping companies of Germany, sailing through the main routes of the oceans and facing the fierce competition from British and US companies. But Hermann Burmester had also co-founded a small shipping company together with a German partner, (OPDR (as described in Wikipedia) which established a flourishing trade between German cities and mainly ports in Portugal and Spain, down to the Canary Islands.

But his father, Johann Wilhelm Burmester, who in the mid thirties of the XIX century had emigrated from Hamburg to Porto, in Portugal (as already mentioned), and who helped his second son Hermann to put up OPDR with the german partner (and provider of glass bottles to the J. W. Burmester & Co. portwine company (which still exists today, be it said also), had in those times another entry into the shipping business: Having made several friends in Porto, he was in 1848 asked by a Portuguese shipping entrepreneur, José António Teixeira, the big producer of salted codfish caught in the banks of Newfoundland, with home port in Porto (others had their bases in other ports of Northern Portugal), if he would not be interested in entering the prosperous shipping business between Portugal and Brazil, independent since 1822 and now with its ports open for general sea trade (before the independence a Portuguese crown monopoly). A third gentleman from Porto was asked as well, a Mr. António de Bessa Leite, one of the heirs of the mighty Bessa empire in Brazil, and the grandfather of whom had emigrated from Porto to Brazil and made quick fortune there. [Note: This last part is not AU!]. Mr. Bessa Leite was the heir of the fortune transferred from Brazil to Portugal and his uncles and cousins managed the wealth which stayed in Brazil, mainly in form of coffee farms in the broader region of São Paulo but also with interests in the mining business in the southern part of the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais.

Messrs. J.A. Teixeira, A. de Bessa Leite - this latter one as main financing partner - and Mr. J. W. Burmester put up in the year of 1851 a new shipping company in Porto, the Companhia de Navegação Invicta, which was immediately insured by an insurance company in which Mr. Bessa Leite had a major interest and which had already a dependency in the Brazilian ports of Salvador (Bahia), Rio de Janeiro and Santos, the port serving the capital S. Paulo. Mr. Teixeira had in said company the position of managing director for the maritime operations, as we would say now, Mr. Burmester had the trade part under his command, which will be expanded later when presenting the ships of the company.

It was the experience gained in this Portuguese shipping line which allowed two decades later his second son Hermann to open two shipping lines, as said before: the OPDR for European trade and the Burmester & Stavenhagen for worldwide operations.

Mr. J. A. Teixeira owned already four four masted luggers for the cod fish operations, ships which entered the new company as his part of the working capital (sister ships of the existing NRP Creoula and which continued that kind of operation. For the new intended long haul trade to Brazil, since the major Portuguese shipyards were in those days full of orders due to the vast dimension of the Portuguese empire, Mr. Burmester convinced his two partners to order a tall ship at an US shipyard (the German yards were also working 24/24 and the British were not keen of supplying a tall ship to one of its major competitors in the world's oceans, Portugal...). This is how the renowned North American yard of Messrs. Donald McKay of East Boston, Massaschussets was contacted and a big four masted bark was ordered. She was christened in 1856 as "Vera Cruz" and brought to Porto, Portugal in the Christmas eve of that year.

[ img ]

(I pay hommage to C. Hoefer for his immaculate designs of sailing ships mainly of the XIX century, on which this one was based).


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erik_t
Post subject: Re: Burmester & Stavenhagen shiplinePosted: October 13th, 2020, 2:14 pm
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Joined: July 26th, 2010, 11:38 pm
Location: Midwest US
The rigging is magnificent. I don't have that kind of patience.


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