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 U Boat sailed up Mississippi
DirkPitt
Posted: Aug 12 2011, 05:19 PM


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Dudester
Posted: Aug 17 2011, 04:04 AM


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Good find. He tells the other half of a story from a great book.

Torpedo Junction by Homer H. Hickam Jr.
From December 1941 to June of 1942, US East Coast and Gulf Coast cities didn't observe black out. Ships sailing at night were silhouetted by the cities. The U boats called this "the happy time."

During those months, one destroyer, and one destroyer only, the USS Dione patrolled for U boats, but usually arrived only in time to rescue merchant marines from the water. One section of the book recounts the search for the U boat that went up the Mississippi.
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Berthier92
Posted: Nov 30 2012, 01:34 PM


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Yes, the happy time (1939-1941) were the best days for the kriegsmarine as ships continued to sail in escorted and unarmed. When America joined the war, hitler ordered as a trial one of his best aces to go take his type VIIC (which was actually only designed for coastal use but saw widespread ocean service) for 3 days they sunk boat after boat, returning home with 7 freighters sunk, a move was then made and 8 uboat s were sent to patrol the east coast all the way to Newfoundland (the strait south of Newfoundland was where the larger oil tankers filled up so uboats tended to wait for them inside the strait. I met an ex Canadian naval veteran who served on a frigate which was guarding the strait that was actually sunk by a u-boat. Apparently afterwards when he made it on a raft the submarine surfaced and its captain spoke through a megaphone in bad English and asked if the survivors had managed to send an SOS before they sank and if they would like them to send one for them laugh.gif

Apparently the east coast was so badly defended the uboats were not worried about destroyers and escorts.
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DirkPitt
Posted: Nov 30 2012, 03:17 PM


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QUOTE (Berthier92 @ Nov 30 2012, 09:34 PM)
I met an ex Canadian naval veteran who served on a frigate which was guarding the strait that was actually sunk by a u-boat. Apparently afterwards when he made it on a raft the submarine surfaced and its captain spoke through a megaphone in bad English and asked if the survivors had managed to send an SOS before they sank and if they would like them to send one for them laugh.gif


Yes, there were many chivalrous German commanders. Foremost in my mind were captain Langsdorff of the Admiral Graf Spee and Felix von Luckner of the sailing ship SMS Seeadler.
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