About 1900, the increasing transhipment and the
ships becoming bigger required an extensive rebuilding and extension
process of the Port of Hamburg. From 1908 until 1909, the sheds 50 and
51 were built along the wall of the Bremen quay. Each of them was 271
metres long and 48 metres deep. Furthermore, a dwelling house for the
quay officials was built in 1911. More or less at the same time, the
sheds 52 and 53 were built at the Australia quay along the India port.
The appeal of the shed 50 A as of the others lies in the lightweight wooden construction in the style of a hall church with nave and two aisles. In comparison, this way of building was not only cheap; it also meant the quick rebuilding in case of a fire. By raising the central nave, an adequate incident of light was made possible. The sheds were stocked with electric half-dockside cranes to the dock side. The quay and loading ramps were connected to the railways and opened to horse and cart. All of these factors made an easy and quick handling of goods possible.
At the gable ends of the shed, the constructors added buildings made of bricks housing office space for the quay’s administration, recreation rooms and sanitary facilities for the dockers as well as company flats for the quay officials. Apart from the sheds’ architecture that pointed the way ahead, the fittings in the head buildings were a huge step forward in the development of the social welfare for the dockers.
At the end of the 1960s, the container revolution led to big structural changes in the Port of Hamburg. Huge parts of the old port were torn down. Today, you find on the spit of quay between Hansa port (Bremen quay) and India port (Australia quay) the last preserved ensemble of quay sheds from Imperial Germany. The sheds 50 to 52 as well as the dwelling house for the quay officials are under preservation order since 2002. The shed 53 has been torn down.