Information about Aalborg Port
Just inside the hall you will see a shipbroker’s office, as it would have looked during the interwar period. The office is equipped with office machines and furniture from the period, such as the tall writing desk, telexes and old telephones. The walls are decorated with paintings and pictures relating to ships and the Port of Aalborg. On the desk are a cash book and a journal of ships’ calls. The journal shows several years of traffic on the Port of Aalborg.
Next to the shipbroker’s office is an impressive collection of small ship models made of paper and sewing thread. The models are very accurate and are comprised of ships from the Danish merchant fleet as well as warships from various nations.
A photomontage and some primitive working tools, used by Dockers, illustrate how much hard labor, loading and unloading ships, involved, before modern equipment was introduced.
Hals Barre, the sand bank at the eastern entrance to the Limfjord, has always affected the development of the harbor and the shipbuilding industries, as it limits the size of ships able to enter the fiord. The channel across the sand bank of Hals Barre was first deepened as early as in the 1870s and since then huge quantities of sand have been removed at regular intervals. One of the exhibition cases illustrates the amount of sand removed from Hals Barre between 1971 and 1981 comparing it to the size of the Aalborg Tower. The dredged sand used to be dumped into the northern Kattegat, so that it shortly afterwards would reappear at Hals Barre. Today we know better. Nowadays most of the sand is used in the building industry. Of course the difficult channel through the sand bank and into the fiord had to be buoyed. This is illustrated on the chart hanging on the wall. You can also see models of some of the fixed lights that mark the channel.
The cannon ball was found during a dredging of Hals Barre. The ball originates from one of the two batteries placed at the entrance to the Limfjord during the war against Great Britain 1807-14. The war began with the siege and bombardment of Copenhagen which resulted in the surrender of the Danish fleet to Great Britain. After that Denmark had to fight its naval war with small oared gunboats, a few small sloops and a number of privateers, fitted out at the expense of private citizens and given a Royal license. These privateers tried to conquer ships from the British convoys bound for the Baltic. This privateering was run on a large scale by merchants and ship owners from Aalborg. The British convoys were protected by warships usually superior in power to the Danish gunboats and privateers. So in order to protect the privateers and the gunboats against the British men-of-war, several coastal batteries, like the ones at Hals and Egense at the entrance to the Limfjord, were established along the Danish coastlines.