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The Fleets

German East Africa Line / Woermann Line (Deutsche Ost-Afrika-Linie / Deutsche Africa-Linien / Woermann Linie)

Operated passenger and cargo services between Germany and East African, West African and South African ports from 1890. Also between South Africa and India. (Woermann Line previously operated services to West Africa).

Many thanks to Ted Finch for his assistance in collecting this data. The following list was extracted from various sources. This is not an all inclusive list but should only be used as a guide. If you would like to know more about a vessel, visit the Ship Descriptions (onsite) or Immigrant Ship web site.

Abbreviations:
DAL - Deutsche Afrika-Linien
DOAL - Deutsche Ost-Afrika-Linie
WL - Woermann Linie

Funnel:
Yellow funnel with black, white, red, white, black bands on the yellow. Black top.
(Deutsche Afrika Line the same).

Fleet:

Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Admiral (1) 1890 ex- Tosari, 1891 purchased from Sunda Line, Hamburg renamed Admiral, 1902 sold to C. T. Bowring renamed Rosalind. 2,372
Admiral (2) 1905 1916 seized by Portugal renamed Lourenco Marques. (picture) 6,341
Adolph Woermann (1) 1886 1894 sank after striking uncharted rock near Nifou. 1,687
Adolph Woermann (2) 1888 ex- Belgrano, 1896 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed Adolph Woermann, 1906 renamed Frieda Woermann, 1917 seized by Brazil renamed Macapa. 2,497
Adolph Woermann (3) 1906 1919 surrendered to Britain as war reparations, 1921 to David SS Co., London renamed Westminster Abbey, then sold to K.N.S.M, Holland renamed Venezuela. 6,268
Adolph Woermann (4) 1922 1939 scuttled by crew near Ascension Island to avoid capture by Royal Navy. (picture) 8,577
Alexandra Woermann 1898 ex- Bruxellesville, 1901 purchased from Soc. Maritime du Congo, Antwerp renamed Alexandra Woermann, 1919 to Britain as war reparations, 1920 to Wilson Line renamed Calypso. 3,757
Aline Woermann (1) 1879 1883 sank. 1,279
Aline Woermann (2) 1891 1908 sold to An Yeng Sang, Hong Kong renamed Aline.
2,378
Aline Woermann (3) 1910 1914 captured by HMS Cumberland at Douala, renamed Politania, 1917 torpedoed and sunk.
3,133
Anna Woermann (1) 1884 1898 sold to Norway renamed Kong Magnus. 1,118
Anna Woermann (2) 1893 ex- Antonina, 1897 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed Anna Woermann, 1914 scuttled as blockship at Douala, 1916 repaired by Britain renamed Polanna, 1917 torpedoed and sunk. 2,335
Arnold Amsinck 1907 1917 seized by Brazil renamed Jaboatao. 4,526
Ascan Woermann 1893 ex- Buenos Aires, 1902 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed Ascan Woermann, 1908 wrecked Grand Bassam. 3,184
Bundesrath (DOAL) 1890 launched as Alice Woermann (WL), completed as Bundesrath. 1909 scrapped. 2,192
Burgurmeister 1902 1919 to France as war reparations, renamed Macoris. 5,945
Carl Woermann (1) 1881 1908 scrapped.
1,946
Carl Woermann (2) 1910 1917 seized by Brazil renamed Atalaia.
5,715
Duala 1939 1945 captured by Britain renamed Empire Ock, to U.S.S.R. as war reparations renamed Peotr Veliki. 6,133
Eduard Bohlen (1) (WL) 1889 1890 renamed Reichstag (DOAL), 1910 sold to Turkey renamed Sabah. 2,202
Eduard Bohlen (2) 1890 1895 transferred to Cie. Belge Maritime du Congo, Belgium. 1898 returned to Woermann Line, 1909 wrecked Conception Bay. 2,367
Eduard Woermann 1903 ex- Alabama, 1904 purchased from Argos Line, Bremen renamed Eduard Woermann, 1919 to Britain as war reparations, operated by Union-Castle Mail SS Co., 1921 sold to Norway renamed Hanna Skogland. 5,643
Eleonore Woermann 1902 1915 shelled and sunk by HMS Australia off Argentina. 4,624
Elisabeth Brock 1912 1919 to France as war reparations, 1921 renamed Foria for Fabre Line. 3,679
Ella Woermann 1883 1908 sold to Italy renamed Helvetia. 1,666
Emilie Woermann 1903 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Edea. 2,486
Emir 1911 1914 captured by HMS Cormorant at Gibraltar, 1916 renamed Polladern, operated by Elder Dempster, 1921 to Mitchell, Cotts & Co, London renamed Sunheath. 5,532
Erich Woermann 1893 ex- Rosario, 1904 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed Erich Woermann, 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Togo. 3,184
Erna Woermann (1) 1884 1896 sold to Belgium renamed Belgique. 1,119
Erna Woermann (2) 1902 ex- Louisiana, 1905 purchased from Argo Line, Bremen renamed Erna Woermann, 1914 captured by HMS Cumberland in Douala, renamed Huntscastle, operated by Union-Castle Mail SS Co. 1921 sold to German East Africa Line renamed Sultan. 1933 scrapped. 5.528
Ernst Woermann 1900 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Kamerun, 1912 wrecked Liberia. 4,065
Feldmarschall 1903 1916 captured at Dar-es-Salaam, operated by Union-Castle Mail SS Co., renamed Field Marshal. 1922 sold to China renamed Ling Nam. (picture) 6,142
Frieda Woermann   see Adolph Woermann.  
General (1) 1890 ex- Salatiga, 1894 purchased from Sunda Line, Hamburg renamed General, 1909 scrapped. 2,361
General (2) 1910 1923 to Messageries Maritimes, France renamed Azay le Rideau. 8,063
Gertrud Woermann (1) 1885 1903 wrecked in fog near Port Nolloth. 1,743
Gertrud Woermann (2) 1893 ex- Pfalz, 1904 purchased from North German Lloyd renamed Gertrud Woermann, 1904 wrecked off Swakopmund in fog. 4,603
Gertrud Woermann (3) 1905 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Windhuk. 6,344
Gertrud Woermann (4) 1907 1917 seized by Brazil renamed Curvello. 6,465
Gouverneur 1900 1909 wrecked near Lourenco Marques. 3,381
Gretchen Bohlen 1890 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Duala. 1.294
Hans Woermann 1900 1914 captured at Duala by HMS Cumberland, managed by Elder Dempster renamed Gold Coast, 1917 torpedoed and sunk. 4,059
Hedwig Woermann 1890 1907 wrecked Sierra Leone.
1,289
Helene Woermann 1888 ex- Montevideo, 1898 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed HW, 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Lome. 2,583
Henny Woermann 1911 1917 seized by Brazil renamed Uberaba. 6,082
Henriette Woermann 1903 1914 captured in Douala by HMS Cumberland, 1915 managed by Cunard SS Co., renamed Polymnia. 1917 torpedoed and sunk. 2,426
Herzog 1896 1911 sold to Portugal renamed Beira. 4,933
Hilda Woermann 1914 1917 renamed Wahehe, same owner, 1919 surrendered to Britain as war reparations, 1920 sold to Burns, Philp & Co., renamed Marella. 7,372
Irma Woermann 1901 1919 to France as war reparations, 1921 renamed Lieutenant Fournaud. 2,304
Jeanette Woermann 1893 1914 captured by HMS Cumberland at Douala, managed by Cunard SS Co renamed Pollentia. 1916 sank. 2,286
Kagera 1915 1919 to France as war reparations, 1922 renamed Indiana by French Line (CGT) 5,617
Kaiser 1891 1912 sold to Chile. 2,901
Kamerun 1938 1945 captured by Allies, 1947 to Norway renamed Goya.
5,042
Kanzler (1) 1890 1891 wrecked on Pinda Shoal in Rovuma Delta. 2,838
Kanzler (2) 1892 1913 sold to Khandwani, Bombay. 3,052
Khalif (1) 1878 ex- Naxos, 1902 purchased from Deutsche Levante Line renamed Khalif. 1905 scrapped. 1,653
Khalif (2) 1906 1916 seized by Portugal renamed Fernao Veloso. 5,105
Khedive 1906 1910 wrecked near East London, South Africa. 5,106
Kigoma 1914 1919 to Britain as war reparations, operated by Shaw, Savill & Albion Line, 1921 to Anchor Line renamed Algeria, 1922 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Toledo. 8,156
Kommodore 1904 ex- Esne, 1910 purchased from Kosmos Line, Hamburg renamed Kommodore, 1916 seized by Portugal renamed Mormugao. 6,013
Konig 1896 1915 shelled and sunk by HMS Hyacinth 4,820
Kronprinz 1900 1916 seized by Portugal renamed Quelimane. (picture) 5,645
Kurfurst 1901 1904 wrecked near Sagres, Portugal. 5,654
Kurt Woermann (1) 1883 ex- Pernambuco, 1894 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed Kurt Woermann 1894 wrecked. 2,027
Kurt Woermann (2) 1895 1919 to France as war reparations, 1922 resold to Woermann Line, 1924 renamed Lagos (Deutsche Levante Linie, managers), 1927 sold to Italy renamed Eudora. 2,263
Lili Woermann 1902 1920 to Britain as war reparations, 1921 resold to Woermann Line, 1933 scrapped. 2,281
Linda Woermann 1895 ex- Gutrune, 1902 purchased from Dampschiff-Rhederei von 1889, Hamburg renamed Linda Woermann, 1916 seized by Portugal renamed Pungue. 1,377
Livadia 1922 1935 chartered from Hamburg America Line, 1936 purchased by DOAL, 1943 shelled and sunk by British long range artillery off Calais. 3,083
Lothar Bohlen (1) 1888 ex- San Nicolas, 1896 purchased from Hamburg South America Line renamed Lothar Bohlen, 1898 stranded Liberia. 2,515
Lothar Bohlen (2) 1898 1920 to Britain as war reparations, 1925 sold to Italy renamed Francesco Vazzana. 2,232
Lucie Woermann 1902 1920 to Britain, managed by New Zealand Shipping Co., 1921 to France as war reparations, renamed Aviateur Roland Garros for Messageries Maritimes. 4,630
Lulu Bohlen (1) 1886 1903 stranded River Sanguin. 1,685
Lulu Bohlen (2) 1904 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Otavi. 5,173
Lulu Bohlen (3) 1911 1920 to France as war reparations renamed Kouroussa for Cie. Francaise de Nav. a Vap., Marseille. 3,159
Marie Woermann (1) 1887 1909 sold D. F. Andreadis, Syra renamed Katinitsa..
1,772
Marie Woermann (2) 1916 1917 renamed Wadai same owner, 1920 to Britain as war reparations, 1921 sold to Rotterdam Lloyd renamed Tjerimai. 7,497
Markgraf 1893 ex- Mark, 1902 purchased from North German Lloyd renamed Markgraf, 1919 shelled and sunk at Tanga by HMS Severn and HMS Mersey. 3,680
Martha Woermann 1902 1920 to Britain as war reparations, 1921 resold to Woermann Line, 1924 wrecked at Forcados. 2,282
Max Brock 1907 1914 captured by HMS Cumberland at Douala, renamed Policastria for the Shipping Controller, London, 1920 sold to Norway renamed Frederick Gilbert, 1922 renamed Grey County, 1925 re-sold to Woermann Line renamed Waregga, 1933 scrapped. 4,579
Melita Bohlen 1883 ex- Lissabon, 1896 purchased from de Freitas, Hamburg renamed Melita Bohlen, 1907 scrapped. 1,993
Muansa 1911 1943 torpedoed and sunk by submarine L.20.
5,408
Njassa 1923 1934 chartered from Hamburg America Line, 1936 purchased by DOAL, 1945 bombed and sunk at Wilhelmshaven. 8,754
Otavi 1940 1946 to France as war reparations, 1947 transferred to Argentina renamed El Gaucho. 6,917
Otto Woermann 1898 ex- Borkum, 1901 purchased from Albis Line, Hamburg renamed Otto Woermann, 1909 sold to Belgium renamed Adour. 1,239
Pangani 1915 1919 to Britain as war reparations operated by Glen Line, 1921 to David SS Co, London renamed Cassio, re-sold to Holland renamed Nijkerk. 5,735
Paul Woermann 1898 1914 captured by HMS Cumberland in Douala, managed by Cunard SS Co renamed Polandia. 2,238
Prasident 1900 1915 scuttled at Lindi, Tanganyika when under British attack. Raised after the war, laid up at Saldanha Bay until 1955 then used as breakwater. 3,310
Pretoria 1936 1945 captured by Britain renamed Empire Doon, troopship. 16,662
Prinzessin 1905 1919 surrendered to Britain, operated by Shaw, Savill & Albion, later by Union-Castle Mail SS Co. 1921 allocated to France as war reparations, renamed General Voyron for Messageries Maritimes. 6,387
Prinzregent 1903 1919 to France as war reparations, 1920 renamed Cordoba for S.G.T.M. 6,341
Professor Woermann (1) 1882 1903 sold to Italy renamed Anna Villa.
1,611
Professor Woermann (2) 1903 ex- Florida, 1904 purchased from Argos Line, Bremen renamed Professor Woermann, 1907 sold to Hamburg America Line renamed Swakopmund. 5,638
Professor Woermann (3) 1912 1914 captured by Royal Navy, renamed Professor and operated by Union-Castle Mail SS Co., 1921 sold to Hugo Stinnes, Hamburg renamed Edmund Wagenknecht. 6,061
Reichstag 1890 see Eduard Bohlen 1889.  
Renata Amsinck 1912 1914 captured by HMS Cumberland at Douala, renamed Polrosa, 1915 wrecked Barbuda, West Indies. 3,824
Rovuma 1915 1919 to France as war reparations, 1922 renamed Nevada by French Line (CGT). 5,618
Rufidji (1) 1911 captured by British at Simonstown, 1916 renamed Huntscliff. 1918 sank off Ireland.
5,442
Rufidji (2) 1921 ex- Andalusia, 1925 purchased from Hamburg America Line renamed Rufidji, 1943 seized by Portugal renamed Buzi. 1.387
Safari 1892 1906 sold to Cowasjee, Dinshaw & Bros., Bombay. 1907 sold to Khedivial Mail Co., London renamed Mansourah.
1,433
Setos 1883 1894 purchased from Kosmos Line, Hamburg, 1901 sunk Bombay in collision. 1,746
Somali 1889 ex- Osiris, 1901 purchased from Kosmos Line, Hamburg renamed Somali. 1914 sunk by British warships - East Africa. 2,532
Sultan (1) 1891 ex- Virginia, 1898 purchased from Hamburg America Line renamed Sultan, 1913 sold to Japan renamed Hachiro Maru. 2,884
Sultan (2) 1921 see Erna Woermann.
 
Swakopmund 1939 1945 bombed and sunk in Baltic. 6,133
Tabora 1912 1916 shelled and sunk by Royal Navy at Dar-es-Salaam. 8,022
Tanganjika 1922 (DOL), 1935 sold to Hamburg America Line, 1936 purchased by Woermann Line, 1939 German Navy accommodation ship, 1943 bombed and sunk at Wilhelmshaven, 1947 raised and scrapped. 8,540
Thekla Bohlen 1894 1919 to France as war reparations, 1921 renamed Song Ma. 2,239
Togo 1938 1945 captured by Allies, 1947 to Norway renamed Svalbard. 5,042
Tubingen 1920 1935 transferred from NGL, 1945 bombed and sunk in Kattegat. 4,501
Ubena 1928 1945 captured by Britain renamed Empire Ken, became troopship. 9,554
Ulanga (1) 1914 ex- Santa Clara, ex- Den of Airlie, 1923 purchased from C. Barrie & Sons, Dundee renamed Ulanga. 1931 scrapped after catching fire. 5,537
Ulanga (2) 1940 1945 to Norway as war reparations renamed Stornes. 6,940
Urundi 1920 1945 surreendered to Britain renamed Empire Thames, 1945 to Greek Government renamed Kalamai. 5,791
Usambara (1) 1903 ex- Edfu, 1910 purchased from Kosmos Line, Hamburg renamed Usambara, 1919 to France as war reparations, 1920 renamed Montana for French Line (CGT) 5,999
Usambara (2) 1922 1940 requisitioned by German Navy, 1945 bombed and sunk near Stettin. 8,690
Usaramo 1920 1940 requisitioned by German Navy as accommodation ship, bombed and sunk at Bordeaux, refloated but 1944 scuttled in River Gironde. 7,758
Ussukuma 1920 1939 scuttled by crew off River Plate after interception by Royal Navy. 7,765
Wadai (1)   see Marie Woermann 1916.  
Wadai (2) 1922 1945 surrendered to Britain renamed Empire Yare, 1946 to Russia renamed Gogol. 4,696
Waganda 1898 ex- Tannenfels, ex- Hunslet, 1921 purchased from Shipping Controller, London renamed Waganda, 1932 scrapped. 5,462
Wagogo 1914 ex- Sofia, ex- St. Andrews, 1925 purchased from Treherbert SS Co, London renamed Wagogo, 1943 seized by Portugal renamed Bailundo. 3,118
Wahehe (1)   see Hilda Woermann 1914.
 
Wahehe (2) 1922 1940 captured by Royal Navy near Iceland renamed Empire Citizen, 1941 torpedoed and sunk. 4,709
Wakama 1921 ex- Odin, 1925 purchased from Frigga Line, Hamburg renamed Wakama, 1940 scuttled by crew near Rio de Janeiro to avoid capture by Royal Navy. 3,771
Wameru 1919 ex- Polaria, ex- Porthia, 1927 purchased from R. H. Read, St. Ives renamed Wameru, 1943 seized by Portugal renamed Huambo. 4,076
Wangoni 1921 1940 requisitioned by German Navy as accommodation ship, 1946 to U.S.S.R renamed Chukotka. 7,768
Waregga (1) 1914 1919 to France as war reparations, 1920 to Soc. les Affreteurs Reunis, Rouen. 3,830
Waregga (2)   1925 see Max Brock.  
Warundi 1914 1919 to France as war reparations, renamed Olbia for Fabre Line, Marseille. 3,821
Watussi 1928 2nd Dec.1939 set afire and abandoned by crew about 50 miles south of Cape Agulhas to avoid capture by Royal Navy while attempting to reach Germany from Mozambique. Later sunk by HMS RENOWN. 9,552
Wigbert 1920 1934 purchased from NGL, 1940 torpedoed and sunk in Kattegat. 3,648
Windhuk 1936 1943 seized by USA renamed Lejeune (AP 74), troopship. 16,662
Wolfram 1921 1934 purchased from NGL, 1942 torpedoed and sunk. 3,648

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