Hamburg was one of the last of over a hundred large sailing vessels built by the Churchill family of Hantsport, led by Ezra Churchill. The barque was named after Hamburg, Germany, continuing a Churchill family tradition of naming ships after ports where they often sought cargoes.
The barque's captain for almost her entire career was Andrew B. Coldwell. Hamburg worked mostly Atlantic trades but also made several long Pacific voyages, rounded Cape Horn many times and made one circumnavigation of the world in 1891. She called at her namesake port of Hamburg, Germany in 1895. She was converted to a gypsumbarge in 1908 and served 17 years carrying gypsum under tow from the Minas Basin to New York. Her working career ended in 1925 when she was beached at Summerville, Hants County, Nova Scotia, just across and downriver from the site of her launch at Hantsport. In 1936, her massive wooden hull was burned to the waterline, leaving her lower hull partially covered and preserved in river silt.
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