This Iconic Ship Gifted To New York By A Trader Is About To Leave The City

peking ship

Photo: flickr/tomasfano

Things are about to change at Wall Street’s neighbour–the South Street Seaport.That’s because the famous ship Peking, which was purchased by the late coffee and gold trader Jack Aron in 1975 and given to the South Street Seaport that same year, will be leaving for the city of Hamburg, Germany next month, according to the Working Harbor Committee.    

The Peking is in desperate need of repair and the South Street Seaport Museum is struggling to get its finances in order, the report said.  

The city of Hamburg has happily decided to take the Peking off of the museum’s hands and it will soon be transported across the Atlantic to the city where it was built. 

The man who brought the ship to New York in 1975, Jack Aron, loved sailing and collecting ships. 

According to Aron’s 1994 obituary in the New York Times, he was a precious metals trader and coffee importer who worked in New York for 50 years, before he sold his firm J. Aron & Company New York to Goldman Sachs in 1981.  

During the mid 1970s, he ran the Bark Peking Foundation, which purchased the Peking and docked it at the South Street Seaport Museum.    

The operators of the South Street Seaport Museum hope that visiting tall ships will soon dock where the Peking once rested.  

The four-mast steel-hulled tall ship was built in Hamburg, Germany in 1911.

The ship was used for the long South American to Europe nitrate trade route. The ship could not run on coal because the route was too long.

Source: The Working Harbor Committee,

The ship was awarded to Italy by the Germans as war reparations following WWI.


Two years later in 1923, she was sold back to her previous German owners.


In 1932 she was sold to a London shipping company and was transformed into a training ship.


She was sold at auction in late 1974 for £70.000 to the J. Aron Charitable Foundation In New York


From 1975 to 2012, she rested at the South Street Seaport Museum in New York.

She will shortly be on her way back to Germany aboard a heavy-cargo ship.

The Israels were another family that made it big in the coffee and commodity business.

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