SS Sołdek Freighter
The SS Sołdek was the first ship built in Poland after World War II. It was equipped with 2 steam boilers, 1 steam engine and had 28 crew members. Poland built 6 ships for itself during the golden times of its ship’s industry. One ship was sold to Russia. During communism times many eastern countries wanted to have a good connection with Russia. As a result, Poland built 23 more ships and sold them to Russia against a ‘friendly price’.
Communists wanted to have highly productive workers who could serve as example for their fellow countrymen and -women. In the Soviet Union such a person was called an Udarnik, translated as shock worker or strike worker. Stanisław Sołdek (May 12, 1916 – June 15, 1970) was such a productivity ninja at the shipyard of Gdańsk. He was awarded the Bronze Cross of Merit. Authorities decided to call the ship after him.
Ore and coal freighter
Poland mainly exported ore and coal. Therefore it needed a freighter big enough to boost its economy by selling it abroad. In 1949 the ship started its service. The ship’s maiden voyagebrought her to the city of Szczecin (Stettin) a Polish seaport city located at the Oder river. It and sailed for the last time in 1980.
The ship’s career in statistics
- 31 years of service
- 87m length and 12.3m width
- 2,610 tons deadweight (DWT)
- 1479 voyages
- 3,5 million tons cargo
- +60 harbors
Museum ship in Gdańsk
In 1985 the ship became a museum ship in Gdańsk. When you visit the ship you will get an idea of:
- the working conditions mid 20th century;
- the equipment that was used
- the method of propulsion
- the building of this ship and others built in Gdańsk Shipyard (exhibition)