Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields:
Germany, Lower Saxony,
This collection of airfields is ©
2010-2012 by RonaldV
Weddewarden/Bremerhaven AAF Revised 3 Sep 2012
Seefliegerhorst Weddewarden/Bremerhaven AAF
Runway: 06/24 - 792x91meters/...feet - grass (CLOSED)
Seefliegerhorst Weddewarden (also known as Advanced Landing Ground R-57 or Bremerhaven AAF, ICAO: EDEO) was an airfield in the port of Wesermünde (todays Bremerhaven) in Bremen, northern Germany.
Construction of the civilian airfield began in 1925 between the villages of Speckenbüttel and Weddewarden, north of the harbour area of Wesermünde.
At the time, there were no buildings in the immediate surrounding area.
A year after construction began the airfield was taken into service.
In 1927 German airline Luft Hansa opened a support facility at the airfield and began services to the German Frisian islands and Helgoland.
After the National-Socialist takeover the decision was taken to expand the airfield into an air base.
As a consequence, the airfield was taken over by the Luftwaffe in 1935, which constructed several large hangars and barracks on the northwestern edge of the airfield.
The flying occurred from a grass field, only the polatforms and the ring taxiway were hardened.
During World War II the airfield was used mainly by naval flying units.
In October 1942 the Minensuchgruppe I (Mine Searching Group I.) was established, flying Ju52MS aircraft, fitted with a large electromagnetic mine detonating ring.
a Ju52MS (Minensucher) with the large electromagnetic ring under the fuselage and wings
On the southern end the Nordhafen was dug out.
At the time it was known as the "Zeppelinhafen" (Zeppelin-port) or the Flugzeugträgerbecken (aircraft carrier dock), intended as berth for the German aircraft carrier "Graf Zeppelin".
To the east another dock was dug, intended for the carriers sistership (only known as "Flugzeugträger B").
The carrier "Graf Zeppelin" was 85% complete in 1940 when all work was ordered to be stopped and the ship never made it to the North Sea or Wesermünde/Bremerhaven.
A Navalised Ju87c intended to be used on the "Graf Zeppelin"
In April 1945 the airfield got a special designation: along with Cuxhafen-Altenwalde it was to become the replacement site for the development of the V-weapons.
The Erprobungsstelle (Test Unit) Karlshagen, better known today as Peenemünde-West, was in danger over being overrun by the Soviets so all of its materiel and personnel were moved west.
Development of rocket weapens was to take place here from now on, and the large hangars were filled with fuselages and parts of Fi-103, X-4, BV-346 and the gliderbomb Hs-293.
Partially destroyed they fell into Allied hands on 7 May 1945 when tBritish forces marched into the city one day before the general surrender of Germany.
Although northwest Germany was to become a British occupation zone, an exclave was granted to the US Army in the area between Bremen and Nordholz.
The US needed a support point with an harbour, to allow the unhindered support of US occupation forces in the south of Germany.
The US Army moved into the airfield as early as May 1945, and used the port to return troops from Europe to the US.
Later it became home to units (many photos!) of the US Army, US Navy and US Air Force, and received the name "Staging Area".
By 1970, all the locations used by the Americans, had merged into the joint location Weddewarden.
In 1973 the barracks were renamed Carl Schurz Barracks.
Focal point of the US Garrisson Bremerhaven was the transshipment of supplies and military machinery, so obviously Bremerhaven hosted transport and support units.
The US Air Force stationed a mobile radar unit (606 Tactical Control Squadron) at the site.
The 39th Signal Battalion was a major communications control unit in support of the US special weapons (read: nuclair weapons) facilities thoughout NATO.
The US Navy stationed the Weser River Patrol at the station until their task was transferred to the German Coast Guard.
map of Bremerhaven AAF
After the Cold War ended the US sharply reduced their presence in Germany.
In an effort to further reduce cost, most of the goods were sent through the Dutch port of Rotterdam, further reducing the need for Bremerhaven.
This ended the American presence at Bremerhaven and the units were withdrawn in 1993, leaving only a small civilian contignent to coordinate the remaining transshipments.
Aerial photo of Bremerhaven AAF, ca 2007-2008 (Google Earth), the dock to the south was the "Zeppelinhafen".
Enlarged photo of Bremerhaven AAF, ca 2007-2008 (Google Earth), a very small portion of the runway can still be seen
as can two platforms on the northeast side of the former airfield, and the hangars and barracks to the northwest.
Bremerhaven in 2010, the remaining runway has disappeared and a large pond has been dug out between the Amerikaring and the Coloradostrasse (Flashearth.com)
The large flying grounds of the former airfield were converted into a port terminal in 2008-2010.
Many of the barracks facilities buildings still exist however, even some of the former hangars at the edge of the former airfield are still being used.
A Bremerhaven Hangar in use as Bremerhaven Radio City (source).
If you have any information about airfields (listed and unlisted) in the Bremerhaven area, please email RonaldV.