The motor ship Dresden is the only surviving unit of the Type IV series of the VEB Deutsche Seereederei Rostock and has been used as a museum ship since 1970.
The Dresden was built in 1956/57 at the Warnow shipyard. She was the fifth ship in the Type IV series , the first series of 10,000 ton general cargo freighters to be built in East German shipyards. Since the first ship in this series was christened Frieden (commissioned in June 1957), the series of fifteen new ships was also known as the Frieden type . On July 27, 1958, the ship was handed over to the Deutsche Seereederei and sailed until 1969 in liner service to East Asia, Indonesia, Africa, India and Latin America.
The later Dresden was launched on July 4, 1957 as Fréden , still with a black hull paint finish, for the Swedish Lauter Shipping AB based in Stockholm. The ship was to be paid for as part of a so-called barter deal . A Swedish company was commissioned to deliver 10,000 tons of rolled steel to the GDR. On the Fréden at the equipment quaya fire broke out in July, caused by welding work. The fire was difficult to control. Some steel plates and components had to be replaced due to the damage. By November 1957, the Swedish client was supposed to realize the purchase price of approx. 27.6 million DM (West), which he did not succeed in doing. The ship was then further built and completed on behalf of DSR. With meanwhile gray paintwork, the acceptance test took place on July 26, 1958 and one day later it was handed over by the VEB Warnowwerft, Warnemünde with the hull number 1305 to the VEB Deutsche Seereederei Rostock and put into operation as Dresden
After significant defects in the machinery, which would have caused disproportionately high repair costs, the ship was decommissioned in 1969 and opened on June 13, 1970 as the "Rostock Shipbuilding Museum". A section of the ship served as a youth tourist hotel in the 1980s.
Today, the Dresden is part of the Rostock Shipbuilding and Shipping Museum in the IGA Park and offers extensive exhibitions on the history of shipbuilding. Topics on shipbuilding in the GDR, operating procedures in a shipyard and the history of maritime radio and navigation are shown. A collection of various types of ship propulsion machinery can also be seen. Many of the original rooms (engine room, command bridge, radio station, ship's hospital and crew cabins) give an impression of seafaring in the 1950s and 1960s.