German Maritime Museum

Michel Iffländer (GfG) / Universität Bremen

Storytime with: Sunhild Kleingärtner

Professor Sunhild Kleingärtner, Managing Director of the GMM and jointly appointed Professor of Maritime History and Maritime Archaeology at the University of Bremen

WHY does the German Maritime Museum collect old ships?

HERE’S WHY - A ship can be a haven of relaxation, a delivery vehicle, a warmonger, an emergency rescue service, a destroyer of the environment, or a repository of knowledge. But one thing is for certain: without ships, our world would be a different place. Ships are the drivers of movement – whether it’s people, goods, ideologies, or information. Ships bear witness to the passing of time, silent and yet communicative concurrently. That is why we explore them and their history – of humankind and the sea. Our exhibitions tell these stories.

WHY is there a bit of the University of Bremen at the German Maritime Museum?

HERE’S WHY - Our museum was founded thanks to the discovery of a medieval cog during a harbor expansion in Bremen in 1962. The wreck raised many questions. What did it originally look like? Where did it come from? How can it be preserved? Research has been important to the GMM from the beginning. Today, we are part of the Leibniz Association as one of eight research museums, maintaining diverse relationships with other scientific institutions, such as within the U Bremen Research Alliance network. We have particularly close ties with the University of Bremen through two joint professorships, research projects, teaching assignments, and dissertations.