Wednesday, December 16, 2015

New Orleans Business Archive: Friede & Goldman

The New Orleans firm of Friede and Goldman, Ltd. was established by Jerome L. Goldman (1924-2013, shown left above) and Commander Vladimir M. Von Der Friede in 1949. Friede (1895-1966) had been a Russian naval officer prior to the revolution, and joined the U.S. Navy during the Second World War. Goldman was a 1944 University of Michigan School of Naval Architecture graduate who had worked for Andrew Jackson Higgins during the war.

The partners quickly established a firm of international renown. They designed ships and offshore rigs. In 1957, they collaborated with Kaiser Aluminum and Chemical Corp. and Bryant Boats (Bayou LaBatre, AL) to introduce all-aluminum welded towboats for work in marshland oil fields.(1) Three years later, the marine engineers developed a number of new vessels for the Delta Steamship Line, including:

Del Rio (Avondale Shipyards, Inc., 1960)
Del Sol (Avondale Shipyards, Inc., 1960)
Del Oro (Avondale Shipyards, Inc., 1960)

These three ships were originally planned for Delta's West African trade routes. The S/S Del Rio was the largest vessel ever built on the Mississippi River when it launched in July 1960. Friede and Goldman departed from traditional ship design in placing the superstructures in the forward part of the ship. The "Dels" were designed for a speed of 18 knots.

After Friede retired in February 1962, Goldman continued to manage the firm. Under his direction, the company designed five new Delta cargoliners:

Delta Argentina (Ingalls Shipyard Division of Litton Industries, 1968)
Delta Brazil (Ingalls Shipyard Division of Litton Industries, 1968)
Delta Paraguay (Ingalls Shipyard Division of Litton Industries, 1968)
Delta Uruguay (Ingalls Shipyard Division of Litton Industries, 1968)
Delta Mexico (Ingalls Shipyard Division of Litton Industries, 1968)

The S/S Delta Argentina was the first to launch. The 1968 ships featured centralized control stations in the engine rooms and on the bridge, as well as "bulbous" bows that were intended to increase speed (designed for 20 knots) and economize fuel.(2)

In 1969, Goldman introduced the world's first LASH (lighter aboard ship), the M/S Acadia Forest. This new transportation system was constructed at the Equitable-Higgins Shipyards on the Industrial Canal. The Port of New Orleans became the embarkation point for modern containerization techniques.

For more maritime history see the Mariners' Museum website.

For more about Avondale Shipyards, consult the University of New Orleans' Earl K. Long Library.

(1)"Aluminum Towboat for Bayou Work Is Planned." The Times-Picayune 17 February 1957.

(2)"Delta Inc. Ship on Maiden Voyage." The Times-Picayune 20 April 1968.

Image above: Jerome L. Goldman and Avondale Shipyards exec. vice president Henry Z. Carter at the Launching of S/S Del Rio. Chamber of Commerce News Bulletin LI:29 (15 July 1960): p. 2. Louisiana Research Collection, Special Collections Division, Tulane University Libraries.

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