The maritime museum at the Hanseatic port of Rostock was founded in 1968 and has the best collection of 20th century merchant ships in Europe.
The vessel now called the “Frieden” (in full “Traditionschiff Typ Frieden”) is the centrepiece of the museum, and has been moored on the bank of the River Warnow opposite the port of Rostock since 1970. She is a freighter of 10,000 tons, commissioned by the DDR for the shipping line VEB Deutsch Seereederei Rostock in 1957, the fifth of a series of 15 constructed in sections in a Rostock shipyard, with four 4-stroke 1800 hp diesel engines. The engine room, the navigation bridge and the main deck with its handling gear can all be examined by visitors, and the main hold accommodates the principal displays which are concerned with the history of shipbuilding along the Baltic coast, and the revival of the industry in the early years of the DDR. The crafts used in building wooden ships in the 18th century are demonstrated, and there are sections on Germany’s first ocean-going screw steamer launched in 1851, and on the building and employment of seaplanes.
The outdoor section includes a slipway, a steam hammer, a port crane and arrays of propellers, anchors and buoys. Apart from the “Frieden”, the vessels displayed include the “Capella”, a ferro-concrete ship built in 1943-44, the “May”, a ship equipped with cranes built at Lübeck in 1895, the “Saturn”, a steam tug constructed in 1908 at Hamburg, and “Langer Heinrich”, a floating crane built at Duisburg in 1905.