Pommern (ship)

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Pommern ship image 2005.jpg
Pommern at Mariehamn, Finland in 2005.
  • Mneme (1903-08)
  • Pommern (since 1908)
  • F Laeisz
  • G Erikson
  • Municipality of Mariehamn
Builder: J Reid & Co
Launched: 1903
Status: Museum ship
General characteristics
Class and type: Windjammer
Length: 95 m (312 ft)
Beam: 13 m (43 ft)
Draught: 7.5 m (24 ft 7 in)
Propulsion: Sails, 3,420 m2 (36,800 sq ft)
Sail plan: Barque
Complement: 26
The Pommern, anchored in the western of Mariehamn's two harbours, Västerhamn.

The Pommern, formerly the Mneme (1903–1908), is a windjammer. It is a four-masted barque that was built in 1903 in Glasgow, Scotland at the J. Reid & Co shipyard.

The Pommern (German for Pomerania) is one of the Flying P-Liners, the famous sailing ships of the German shipping company F. Laeisz. Later she was acquired by Gustaf Erikson of Mariehamn in the Finnish Åland archipelago, who used her to carry grain from the Spencer Gulf area in Australia to harbours in England or Ireland until the start of World War II.

On 2 March 1925, Pommern ran aground at Port Germein, South Australia,[1] but she was refloated and returned to service.

On 25 November 1928, Pommern was completely dismasted in the English Channel. Her 79 crew were taken off by the German tug Heros. The British ocean liner Lancastria offered assistance but Pommern refused it.[2][3] Pommern was towed into Saint-Malo, Brittany, France, where she arrived on 30 November 1928. She was repaired and returned to service.

After World War II, Pommern was donated to the town of Mariehamn as a museum ship. It is now a museum ship belonging to the Åland Maritime Museum and is anchored in western Mariehamn, Åland. A collection of photographs taken by Ordinary Seaman Peter Karney in 1933 showing dramatic pictures of life on a sailing ship rounding Cape Horn can be found in the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich.

A 1:35-scale model of Pommern hangs in Grundtvigs Kirke, in Copenhagen, Denmark, though on being donated to the church in 1939, the model was renamed Dronning Alexandrine in honour of Denmark's then- queen consort.[4]

Pommern is so-called "bald-headed barque": it does not have royals over her upper topgallant sails. The topsails and topgallant sails have been divided in two (upper and lower) to ease their handling.

Pommern has the reputation of being a "lucky ship". She survived both world wars unscathed, lost only four crew members at sea on her journeys, and won the Great Grain Races twice, 1930 and 1937. "Pommern" is thus one of the most popular landmarks of Åland, and is visited by thousands of visitors annually.

Four other Clyde-built tall ships are still afloat:

Technical details[edit]

  • Structure: Built of steel
  • Sail plan: 4 masted barque
  • Length: 95 m (312 ft)
  • Width: 13 m (43 ft)
  • Draft: 7.5 m (25 ft)
  • Gross register tonnage: 2376
  • Net register tonnage: 2114
  • Cargo: 4,050 t (3,990 long tons; 4,460 short tons)
  • Height of main mast: 50 m (160 ft)
  • Total area of sails: 3,240 m2 (34,900 sq ft)
  • Area of square sails: 2,450 m2 (26,400 sq ft)
  • Crew: 26

See also[edit]

References in Literature[edit]

The children in Arthur Ransome's We Didn't Mean To Go To Sea encounter the Pommern as they return to Harwich. The Pommern had unloaded its cargo of Australian grain and was being towed out before setting sail back to Mariehamn in the Baltic.

Further reading[edit]

  • Kåhre, Georg (1978). The Last Tall Ships: Gustav Erikson and the Åland Sailing Fleets 1872–1947. Greenwich: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-134-3


  1. ^ "Casualty Reports". The Times (47003). London. 4 March 1935. col A, p. 26.
  2. ^ "Casualty reports". The Times (450). London. November 1928.
  3. ^ "Shipping casualty reports". The Times (45060). London. 26 November 1928. col F, p. 13.
  4. ^ Grundtvigs Kirke [Grundtvig's Church] (in Danish), København, DK

External links[edit]

Media related to Pommern at Wikimedia Commons

Coordinates: 60°05′50″N 019°55′31″E / 60.09722°N 19.92528°E / 60.09722; 19.92528