J.C. Tecklenborg

The Tecklenborg shipyard was founded by the ship's carpenter Johann Simon Abegg in Bremerhaven in 1842. Abegg's colleague, Johann Carl Tecklenborg, took over the yard in 1845. In the first decades, wooden ships were manufactured. In 1855, a dry dock went into operation, named after the then King George of Hanover.

The company developed, and it was one of the handful of shipbuilding firms which successfully managed the transition to modern iron shipbuilding, backed by share capital. But for this purpose, production had to be moved to the other bank of the River Geeste. In 1881, a piece of land was purchased on the Mühlacker area. There a modern shipbuilding plant came into being, where iron and steel steamers of different types, but also sailing vessels were built and launched. The latter shaped the image of the yard; the five-mast-ships POTOSI (1895) and PREUSSEN (1902) of the famous Hamburg F. Laeisz line for instance are still remembered today in the international sailing community. Laeisz also commissioned the four-mast-barque PADUA. She still sails today as the Russian KRUSENSTERN and has occasionally visited Bremerhaven.

The international shipbuilding crisis after World War I finally brought an end to the business of the Tecklenborg yard, although the technical know-how and the finances of the company were said to be comparatively sound. But it was taken over by the AG “Weser” shipyard in Bremen and closed down in 1928. What then followed was a dismantling of a quite successful yard, which had become victim of financial interests generated outside the firm. An apartment block on the former shipyard area named Tecklenborg still reminds us of a significant chapter in Bremerhaven shipbuilding history.

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