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(prior to 1935 known as Reichsmarinewerft
) was the naval shipyard
Shipyards and dockyards are places which repair and build ships. These can be yachts, military vessels, cruise liners or other cargo or passenger ships. Dockyards are sometimes more associated with maintenance and basing activities than shipyards, which are sometimes associated more with initial...
Wilhelmshaven is a coastal town in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is situated on the western side of the Jade Bight, a bay of the North Sea.-History:...
, Prussian Hanover
The Province of Hanover was a province of the Kingdom of Prussia and the Free State of Prussia from 1868 to 1946.During the Austro-Prussian War, the Kingdom of Hanover had attempted to maintain a neutral position, along with some other member states of the German Confederation...
, between 1918 and 1945 in the German Navy
The German Navy is the navy of Germany and is part of the unified Bundeswehr .The German Navy traces its roots back to the Imperial Fleet of the revolutionary era of 1848 – 52 and more directly to the Prussian Navy, which later evolved into the Northern German Federal Navy...
's extensive base located there.
Kriegsmarinewerft Wilhelmshaven was founded after World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...
as Reichsmarinewerft Wilhelmshaven
on the grounds of the Kaiserliche Werft Wilhelmshaven
Kaiserliche Werft Wilhelmshaven was a German shipbuilding company in Wilhelmshaven, Prussian Hanover. It was founded in 1853, first as Königliche Werft Wilhelmshaven but renamed in 1871 with the proclamation of the German Empire...
that had been closed down.
In 1935 the shipyard changed its name to Kriegsmarinewerft Wilhelmshaven when the German Navy changed name from the Reichsmarine
The Reichsmarine was the name of the German Navy during the Weimar Republic and first two years of Nazi Germany. It was the naval branch of the Reichswehr, existing from 1918 to 1935...
to the Kriegsmarine
The Kriegsmarine was the name of the German Navy during the Nazi regime . It superseded the Kaiserliche Marine of World War I and the post-war Reichsmarine. The Kriegsmarine was one of three official branches of the Wehrmacht, the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany.The Kriegsmarine grew rapidly...
After World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...
the shipyard was dismantled and 95% was blown up by the British
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...
- Scharnhorst class
The Scharnhorst class were the first capital ships, alternatively referred to as battlecruisers or battleships, built for the German Navy after World War I. The class comprised two vessels: the lead ship Scharnhorst and Gneisenau...
Scharnhorst was a German capital ship, alternatively described as a battleship and battlecruiser, of the German Kriegsmarine. She was the lead ship of her class, which included one other ship, Gneisenau. The ship was built at the Kriegsmarinewerft dockyard in Wilhelmshaven; she was laid down on 15...
, launched 3 October 1936, sunk by HMS Duke of York (17)
HMS Duke of York was a King George V-class battleship of the Royal Navy. Laid down in May 1937, the ship was constructed by John Brown and Company at Clydebank, Scotland, and commissioned into the Royal Navy on 4 November 1941, subsequently seeing service during the Second World War.In...
and her escorts off North Cape 26 December 1943
- Bismarck class
The Bismarck class was a pair of battleships built by the German Kriegsmarine shortly before the outbreak of World War II. The ships were the largest warships built by the German Navy and the heaviest capital ships ever completed in Europe...
Tirpitz was the second of two s built for the German Kriegsmarine during World War II. Named after Grand Admiral Alfred von Tirpitz, the architect of the Imperial Navy, the ship was laid down at the Kriegsmarinewerft in Wilhelmshaven in November 1936 and launched two and a half years later in April...
, launched 1 April 1939, sunk by RAF Avro Lancaster aircraft off Norway, 12 November 1944
- Deutschland class
The Deutschland class was a series of three panzerschiffe , a form of heavily armed cruiser, built by the Reichsmarine officially in accordance with restrictions imposed by the Treaty of Versailles...
heavy cruisers (known as Panzerschiff at launch):
- Admiral Scheer
Admiral Scheer was a Deutschland-class heavy cruiser which served with the Kriegsmarine of Nazi Germany during World War II. The vessel was named after Admiral Reinhard Scheer, German commander in the Battle of Jutland. She was laid down at the Reichsmarinewerft shipyard in Wilhelmshaven in June...
, launched 1 April 1933, sunk by RAF bombs 10 April 1945.
- Admiral Graf Spee, launched 30 June 1934, scuttled at River Plate 17 December 1939.