Arbeitskreis Hafen:
Ankerpunkte der Verflechtung –
Postkoloniale Spuren in der Überseestadt

Critcal harbour tour

2021 narratinghistory
External location: Überseestadt
Participation free. Limited number of participants – please register at

The Bremer Überseestadt is located in the area of the former ports of the city of Bremen and bears many traces pointing to German colonialism and overseas trade. Streets are named after colonial actors and indirectly refer to the colonial-revisionist movements of the 1920s, in which merchants, politicians and citizens advocated for regaining the colonies “lost” in the First World War. The tour takes up these traces and portrays the development of Bremen’s city ports in their entanglement with European expansionism and German colonialism. It addresses the trade with colonial goods such as coffee, tobacco and cotton, for the cultivation of which people were enslaved, forced to work or coerced into wage dependency. For the merchants of Bremen, this was a profitable business, and some of their enterprises are still active today. During the tour along the built structures of the Überseestadt, participants are invited to raise critical questions about the relationship between the history of trade and the construction of the port, between municipal policies and colonialism: How did Bremen become Germany’s coffee capital? How was the cotton trade organized and how was Bremen able to secure its position in it? And what do the domination of nature and the construction of port infrastructures have to do with the colonial project?

Arbeitskreis Hafen works on the topics of colonialism, trade history and port construction and has been offering guided tours of Bremen‘s Überseestadt since 2015.

Tour in german language.
Duration approx. 120 minutes (route approx. 3.5, km). Start and end point is the BSAG stop Überseetor.

Unfortunately, the harbor tour is not wheelchair accessible.