A Giant between the Wars

72.9 meters long, 10.45 meters wide, the cargo steamer DURAZZO was the largest ship to leave Papenburg until 1951.

After the First World War, things only moved ahead gradually in the young German republic. So there was a sense of relief at MEYER WERFT when, in 1921, the order for a cargo steamer was received from a German ship owner - a veritable giant with its length of 72.9 meters.

The shipyard managed to complete the Durazzo on schedule, but during the months of its construction Franz Joseph Meyer scarcely had a moment's rest. Due to the very short building time all available hands on the shipyard had to assist first in the riveting and later in the painting. Even so, the 1468 GRT steamer was handed over punctually to the Hamburg-Amerika-Linie.

MEYER WERFT, too, was hit hard by the great world economic crisis at the end of the Twenties. In order to save the company, Franz Joseph Meyer once again concentrated on the construction of smaller, special-purpose vessels. With this he succeeded in steering the shipyard through the difficult times. He himself did not live to see his sons, Joseph-Franz and Godfried, expand the company after the Second World War to gain international renown. Up until the death of Franz Joseph Meyer in 1951 the Durazzo remained the largest ship ever to leave Papenburg.