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  1. Martin Antonenko A Fixture

    U-Boat War...

    On Thursday, May 3, 1917, the British steamer "Transylvania", which had been converted into a troop transport...


    ...under the command of Lieutenant S. Brennel...


    ...departs from Marseille for a trip to Alexandria (Egypt).

    The ship is escorted by the Japanese destroyers "Matsu"...


    ...and "Sakaki"...


    ... which are commanded by Rear Admiral Kozo Sato...:


    On board the "Transylvania" are - apart from the crew - 200 British officers and 2860 soldiers for the theater of war in Palestine...:


    To protect against German U-boat attacks, the small formation runs in zigzag courses.

    On the morning of May 4, 1917, at around 10 a.m. near Savona, the troop transporter was sighted by SMS U 63...


    ...under the command of Kapitänleutnant Otto Schultze...


    ... and attacked!

    Schultze fires a torpedo, which hits the "Transylvania" port side in the engine room.

    The steamer immediately lists - the engine room is the weak point of any torpedoed ship because it is the largest space undivided by bulkheads - and Lieutenant Brennel realizes his ship is doomed!

    With the last speed that the machines still have left, the British commander has the ship steered towards the nearby land - to set it aground in shallow water, while the destroyer "Matsu" comes alongside to take as many soldiers as possible from the ship salvage doomed ship.


    Meanwhile, the other destroyer "Sakaki" tries to ram the emerging submarine.

    U 63 fires a torpedo at "Matsu", the Japanese see the torpedo coming, the destroyer aborts its salvage maneuver and retreats with "Thrice Madman" to avoid the weapon.

    This succeeds - but the torpedo actually intended for "Matsu" then hits the Transylvania again, which sinks within a few minutes.



    29 officers and 373 soldiers are killed in the sinking, including Lieutenant Brennel.

    The wreck of the "Transylvania", which broke into two parts at the level of the engine room, still lies on the spot on the bottom of the Ligurian Sea, near the village of Predani. It was discovered in 2011...:


    On the Bergegi mountain above Predani, a monument commemorates the dead...:



    Nap likes this.
  2. Nap A Fixture

    Terrifying warfare on all sides , being sunk must be horrific and living in one of the first U boats could not have been pleasant either

    Cheers Martin


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