"Prince Heinrich" again from Emden to Borkum

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Steamship Tradition Steamship Tradition

The traditional steamer "Prinz Heinrich" enters the port of "Alte Werft". Photo: Carmen Jaspersen / Photo of the archive

Source: dpa-infocom GmbH

"Prince Heinrich" has long since arrived at the age of retirement. At 110, he wants to let off steam.

emden / Borkum (dpa) – 60 years after his last steamboat voyage, the floating vintage "Prinz Heinrich" is officially heading for Borkum, an island in the North Sea. The meticulously restored steamer departed Thursday in East Frisian Leer and then stopped at Emden. Friday (10am), "Prince Heinrich" leaves for the first time on the historic road from Emden to Borkum. Islanders and guests wish to celebrate the return of the traditional ship in the afternoon as it should be.

"Prince Heinrich" ran from the pile in 1909 to the Papenburg Meyer shipyard and is now considered a national cultural monument. The oldest German double-passenger steamer steamed between Emden and Borkum for decades and survived two world wars as a supply ship.

In 1958, diesel engines replaced the steam engines. After the conversion and renaming of "Hesse" in 1970, a buyer took over the ship and operated it in Lübeck as a museum ship bearing the name "Mississippi". In 2003, a new development association bought the wreck in Leer, East Friesland, and prevented it from being destroyed by an expensive renovation.

After years of research, club members in Britain discovered two suitable steam engines and let them pass to Emden Nordseewerken. "Zicke" and "Betsy" weigh about two and a half tons. Despite their high age of more than 100 years, the two men will soon be able to really show what they are made of: the old steam engines produce about 100 horses. After more than 60,000 hours of work, the ship also shines with its classic superstructure and Art Nouveau interior design.

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