Robert Ley Publications
1939 - 1940
Presented here is a unique and completely original copy of the Third Reich's 1940 book:
"Nach den Glucklichen Inseln" or "Towards the Happy Islands"
This 7-3/4" x 10-1/2" book is one of the finest original Third Reich books on the KdF cruises and features a cruise from Madeira to Teneriffe aboard the E.S. Robert Ley during her brief passenger service career! Throughout these 64 pages (with a full color photo on every second page) this excellent book shows what the German "Volksgenosse" saw and experienced when they booked a trip on the flagship of the KdF fleet. It is a tribute to the KdF and the foreign places the ordinary German worker could never think of visiting before the program was put in place by the Nazi regime. Some of the photos included are of the Robert Ley at berth, passengers relaxing on her decks and dining rooms, and passenger photos of the various stops along the way. The book was published by order of the KdF from Karl Busch and printed 1940 by the Zeitgeschichte Verlag in Berlin, at a time when these cruises had been postponed since more then a year because of the outbreak of the war. This book comes complete with its almost undamaged original dust cover. My collection has both the hard cover and paperback versions of this book.
Presented below are 30 of the beautiful color images from this book.
These photographs take the KdF cruising experience to a whole new level.
In the 15th photo - you can see a HAPAG flag identical to the one in our collection from the Ley's stern mast.
March 15, 1939
The building of the Robert Ley. She is to be handed over to the DAF in 9 days on March 24th. Arbeitertum - Inside, Building of the Robert Ley. Photos include her unfinished swimming bath, standard cabin, & dockside view.
Illustrierter Beobachter (Illustrated Observer) April 13th, 1939
This was an illustrated propaganda magazine which the Nazi Party published
This edition features Hitler touring the newly launched Robert Ley on her Tirpitz launch voyage.
Schiffe Menschen Schicksale Nr. 98
Fahrgastschiff "Robert Ley"
Arbeitertum - First issue of December, 1940
The World Has Not Come To Pass.
Memories of the 7th anniversary of the Kraft Durch Freude.
The full translation can be seen under the Arbeitertum page.
Ships Monthly Magazine featuring the Robert Ley
A few interesting notes in this article include:
- Before the days of internet, her images are listed as 'rare'.
- It was rumored in April of 1940 that she was sunk in the Skaggerak. *The Skagerrak is a strait running between Norway and the southwest coast of Sweden and the Jutland peninsula of Denmark, connecting the North Sea and the Kattegat sea area, which leads to the Baltic Sea.
- It said she capsized after bombing, was salvaged, and after provisional repairs towed to Thomas W. Ward's at Inverkeithing in Scotland in 1946.
- Apparently she was allocated to the USSR after her arrival. It was rumored she became the Iosif Stalin, or the Stalin, and was eventually reconstructed as a passenger liner or whale-factory ship, but realized this had not happened.
Für Eickhoff Lyuan - Eichhoff FIrm Publications
From the Robert Ley Voyage of June 7th to June 13th, 1939
Anniversary Cruise for the Eickhoff People
June (Below) and August 1939 (Bottom) issues featuring this particular voyage.
Die Frau am Werk - April 1938
Featuring the launch of the Robert Ley and the newly commissioned Wilhelm Gustloff.
Special Edition for the voyage of the E.S. Robert Ley
- No Date, but probably for the maiden voyage as several photos have Hitler on board the liner.
Siemens - Der Anschluss
Berlin - 1939
"Robert Ley" Electric ship of the KdF Fleet.
Energie Technical Magazine
Featuring the launch of the Robert Ley on the back cover.
Since I have not yet had the time to translate several of these articles for the Ley, I decided to scan and upload the PDFs of each for those interested in reading / translating them on their own. Just click the article image to pull it up!
April 15th, 1939
Going on the First Voyage
The Flagship of the KdF Fleet
Robert Ley by Stabsleiter Simon.
Energie Technical Magazine feat. Robert Ley
Robert Ley on the cover during her maiden voyage. April, 1939.
Münichner Illustrierte Presse (Munich Illustrated Press) - April 13th, 1939
Similar article with Hitler touring the newly launched Robert Ley on her Tirpitz launch voyage.
Energie Technical Magazine
The KdF Ship Robert Ley - The Largest Ship with Diesel-Electric Drive.
June 1st, 1939
The Robert Ley is on the cover during one of her voyages. Nothing about her on the inside.
Passengers disembark the Robert Ley on the cover at St. Cruz. Nothing about her on the inside.
December 15th, 1939
Featuring the Der Deutsche & Robert Ley as Lazarettschiff 'B'.
"The KdF vessel 'Der Deutsche' after its return from Riga in Gotenhafen. In the background, the 'Robert Ley' serving as a hospital ship is towed into port."
Astra Company Magazine
Features a stunning color painting of the Robert Ley on the cover. The interior features a page of information and photographs about their company cruise on the Robert Ley in 1939.