The Danube Steamboat Shipping Company, Donaudampfschiffahrtsgesellschaft was a shipping company founded in 1829 by the Austrian government for transporting passengers and cargo on the River Danube. In 1880, the DDSG was the world's largest river shipping company with more than 200 steamboat ships and about 1000 cargo tubs. Steamboats on the Danube were, by the end of the 19th century, dominated by the Austrian-based DDSG. A new organisation was formed in 1896, based in the Hungarian part of the Habsburg empire, which was to become a significant player in both the freight haulage and passenger businesses. The MFTR took over the fleet of the Hungarian Railways (MAV) in 1914 and eventually became MAHART, a company which continues to exist in the Danube freight business.


Steamers acquired from MAV in 1895 were the Lukacs Bela, and later Csoka, Rakosi Matyas, Csongrad Steamers built in 1896-7: Deak Ferenc, later Dunagyongye; Ersebet Kiralyne; Szechenyi Istvan and Ferencz Jozsef Later new vessels were built (1916–1928) and these were the: Zita Kiralyne, later Vercse, Szent Istvan IV Karoly, later Sas, St Imre, Felszabadulas, Szoke Tisza Ferencz Ferdinand Foherczeg, later Rigo, Leanyfalu, Kossuth Joszef Foherczeg, later Varju, Dozsa Gyorgy, Jozsef, Domos Szent Gellert, later Tancsics, Szoke Tisza Szent Laszlo, later Petofi Later purchases (1939–1941) Domos, earlier Leda Bacska The bigger boat, known as BKA (bronirovannyie katera, or armored cutter) 1124, had two turrets initially taken from T-26 tanks and mounting 45mm guns. The boat displaced 42 tons, was 25 meters long and had 12mm of armor on its "citadel" protecting the engines and other vitals. While drawing more water than a half-meter, it still could operate in very shallow waters as it only drew 0.80 meters. The smaller version, known as BKA 1125, only drew 0.5 meters and displaced 29 tons. These were only slightly shorter (22.6 meters) but had less armor protection. Series production began in 1935 at small shipyards along the Soviet Union's inland rivers,

World War II

By the time of the 1941 invasion by Germany, 85 boats had been delivered with 68 more under construction. They went into action very early, with boats of the Danube flotilla infiltrating Romanian defenses to land troops on 24 June and routing Romanian marines defending the Danube delta. Don During the Third Reich era, the DDSG was involved in transporting Jews after Kristallnacht. In 1991 the company was divided up with a cargo shipping enterprise and a passenger leisure cruising business and these two private companies still exist.

See also



Patrick Feore. Between the Woods and Water. 1986.

External links

Erste Donau-Dampfschiffahrts-GmbH

DDSG-Cargo GmbH
Category:Shipping companies of Austria Category:Danube {{Europe-company-stub