The old warehouse district of the Hamburg harbor was built from 1883, and the first part was finished in1888. (On one of my photos you can see the number 1888 in dark bricks in an old warehouse)
The goods were brought from the ships with barges to the warehouses and there hoisted by rope winches which are still working up to today. In the warehouses jute sacks containing coffee, teas, cocoa, spices, caoutchouc etc. and carpets were piled. And still today you can find all these goods there.
Since 1991 the old warehouse district of the Hamburg harbor is an UNESCO world cultural heritage site. (Fortunately, they didn’t tear it down as planned some years ago)
On one photo you can see our main church, St. Michael, which has a baroque style and was started to be built in 1647. The other church which is called St. Catharine was mentioned first in 1256 and was constructed in a gothic style.
The modern building you see on another photo is our new philharmonic hall which will be opened in exactly one year. It was erected above the corpus of a former cocoa warehouse. The very modern and innovative glass construction rises up to 110 m. This concert hall of world class will cost us 790 million Euros!!
Up to 2003 our harbor was a duty free port with customs controls.
I have a very close relation to this part of Hamburg. My father was a ship chandler and had an office in one of these old buildings. He supplied all goods needed to the ships of A. Onassis and I have been in the harbor and on the ships quite often.
I have written a little poem about the feelings I had when I went there on 25th of December 2015
The last rays of the winter-sun are turning the windows into brilliant gold
The river is glittering in yellow, a cornucopia of diamonds scattered on the surface
A little purple cloud looking like a forlorn angel is silently drifting away
The cold wind makes a clattering sound in the rigging of an old sailing-ship
Little colorful pennants are fluttering merrily in the air
Veteran ropes are creaking with the rhythm of the little waves
Seagulls cawing harshly are floating above the ship like on strings in the last sunset-colored clouds
Slowly the sun disappears; everything looks like a paper silhouette in front of a salmon dream
The river is getting darker, nearly black, sparkling eerily with moon-silver and stardust
From far away the typhon of a ghost ship ready to leave
A sunset is a goodbye from a day – I leave this place of beauty with contentment in my heart