The "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" brief history
The "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" is a 3-masted steel bark, built by Johann C.
Tecklenborg in Bremerhaven- Geestemünde in 1914 as a training ship for the
German merchant marine, and given the name "Grosshertzog Friedrich August".
During most of World War I the "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" was used as a stationary
training ship in Germany, and was, after the war, taken as a prize by the
On an initiativ by the current director of Det Bergenske Dampskibsselskab
(Bergen Line) and former minister Kristofer Lehmkuhl , the Norwegian Shipowners
Association purchased the ship in 1923 for NOK 425.000. As a token of
appreciation and gratitude to Kristofer Lehmkuhl for his work for the school
training ship issue, and for his work in the 1905-cabinet, the ship was renamed
"Statsraad Lehmkuhl" (Minister Lehmkuhl).
The Bergen Shipowner Association did, in 1923, carry out a 5 month cruice for
some 200 boys, where after the ship was transferred to the "Bergen School Ship
Foundation". Exept for the period 1940-1945, when the Germans confiscated the
ship during World War II and renamed it "Westwärts, the "Bergen School
Ship Foundation" operated the "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" until 1966.
Despite major public contributions, the "Bergen School Ship Foundation" could
not afford to operate the ship beyond 1966. The interest in School Ship
Training Ships was declining, and in combination with increasing operating
costs this resulted in serious considerations of selling the ship. Shipowner
Hilmar Reksten purchased the ship in order to prevent it from being sold
abroad, and to make sure that it continued as a school training ship.
During the years 1968-1972 shipowner Reksten operated the "Statsraad Lehmkuhl"
as a training ship at his own expense. As the govermental contribution was
reduced, the ship was ultimately laid-up i Bergen harbour from 1973. In 1978
shipowner Hilmar Reksten donated the "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" to the Statsraad
Lehmkuhl Foundation, which is the current owner and operator of the ship. The
Foundation has, over the years, rented ship the out to schools, clubs,
companies and other organizations who have used the ship for cruises and
shorter trips. In addition the Foundation itself has arranged cruises and
costal trips which have been open for the public.
The "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" has a gross tonnage of 1701 tons and has a sail area
of 2026 square meters distributed on 22 sails. The capasity for trainees has
been up to 200, and a cabin capasity for the permanent crew accomodates 20
persons. The ship has a diesel engine that develops 1125 HP, which gives the
ship speed of up to 11 knots under fair weather conditions.
The main dimentios are:
Length extreme: 98,0 m 321,4 feet
Length of hull: (L.o.a.) 78,0 m 258,2 feet
Length in water line: 73,0 m 239,6 feet
Breath: 12,6 m 41,0 feet
Heigth water line to top mast: 48,0 m 15,5 feet
Drought: 5,2 m 17, 0 feet
The "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" has also participated in several ships races, arranged
by the Sail Training Association. These races are now arranged every year; the
first one in 1956. The "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" has participated in the following
races with the following results:
1960: Oslo-Ostende: 1. prize
1964: Lisboa- Bermuda: 6. prize
1966: Falmouth-Skagen: 3. prize
1970: Plymouth-Tenerife: 2. prize
1993: Newcastle-Bergen: 1. prize
1993: Larvik-Esbjerg: 1. prize
In considertion of the cadets security, the "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" was
originally given a reduced rig relative to its size. This represent a certain
handicap in sail races when the wind is gentle. The ship sails really well in
The "Statsraad Lehmkuhl" is today Norway's largest and oldest square rigged