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Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

Article about: Steve: Thanks for the follow-up on Mont Alto. It looks like Prusse was probably the engineer superintendent of construction on both the Deutschland and the Bremen. His official designation i

  1. #381

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    STBaltimore: In answer to your question, "Does anyone else see this as an early 20th century attempt at photo shop touch-up?" NO., but here is a 1916 version showing Hinsch, König & Hilken. Dwight

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  2. #382

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    I see!!!! I offer three separate tugboats and you see me and raise me three prominent event figures. Nice hand!

    Nice image too. Definitely a cut-n-paste job! Then again I have seen a few images of the three of these guys atop the Baltimore & Ohio Rail Road Building in Baltimore and they weren't composites to be sure... I think? Maybe the Swede or Norwegian was, you know the guy who's country was suppose to have supplied the escort vessel?

    Speaking of escorts or consorts, is it true that Captain Hinch's ship, NECKAR, wasn't at the pier when U-DEUTSCHLAND first arrived? I think I recently read that it was anchored very near to where the NS SAVANNAH is currently layberthed at South Canton Terminals. The place then was known as Thompson's Point, probably derived from Thompson's Seagirt Inn & Resort. Interesting to note that the SAVANNAH also rides in sight of U-DEUTSCHLAND'S Patapsco River anchorage off of Thom's Cove.

  3. #383

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    Here is a mystery for you sleuths to work on. When the U-Deutschland arrived in Baltimore on 9 July 1916, one of the men aboard was a man whose last name was Prusse who was 38 years old when he arrived in Baltimore. At the time he was listed as “K. Prusse, supercargo.” He does not appear in any of the crew photographs. This is everything I know about him that is reasonably certain.

    His real name was Gotthold Prusse, though he was also known as William Gotthold Prusse or William Prusse; and he did not return to Germany with the Deutschland in August 1916. One source says that he “did not make the return trip on account of the ill effect upon his health.” Instead he remained in Baltimore where “he was employed in the capacity of expert by the Eastern Forwarding Company.”

    While the U-Deutschland was still in Boston, Simon Lake entered into an agreement with the Hilkens and Friedrich Krupp A. G. to build Deutschland type cargo submarines in the United States. Included in the announcement was that “William Prusse, a Krupp engineer,” would supervise the construction with Lake acting as the technical consultant.

    He was probably an engineer, maybe even a Krupp engineer. He is variously described as a naval constructor, a designer of submarine systems, the U-Deutschland’s loadmaster, the Deutschland’s designer, and the designer of the submersible freighter. He was often referred to in the press as Constructor Prusse.

    He was described as being very quiet and unobtrusive. He spoke English “indifferently,” and had the habit of “bringing his heels together whenever he was addressed.” According to the Gettysburg Times, he spent a great deal of time in “the resorts about Blue Ridge Summit, Pennsylvania.”

    According to a 3 August 1916 New York Times, he was spending a month in Buena Vista Springs, Franklyn County, Pennsylvania. The New London, The Day, reported that Prusse stayed at the Crocker House in New London from September 1916 until the United States declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917. He vanished the following day.

    The New York Times reported that Prusse lived in the “northern part” of Baltimore and Federal authorities arrested him on 20 August 1917 for “leaving a restricted zone without permission,” after he was found “in the neighborhood of Fort Howard, on the bay shore,” a prohibited area. On 26 August the New York Times had reported that he was arrested “for entering a barred zone without a permit,” which sounds more likely to me. He was ordered held for thirty days in Baltimore as an “alien enemy” pending action by the Department of Justice. On 18 September 1917 he was found hanged in his cell, an apparent suicide.

    So, who and what was he, really? Dwight

  4. #384

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    STBaltimore: I don’t know how long the Neckar had been berthed at the State Pier, but she was definitely there on 10 July. See, J. H. Klein, “Report on German vessel, SS Deutschland, 10 July 1916, Office of Naval Records and Library, “Reports of Visits of the Deutschland to Baltimore and New London during 1916,” RG45, File JA and JU, NARA. The photo below shows the boat having just arrived in her berth on 9 July, and there is no sign f the Neckar, though the ship might be just out of the photo. But looking at this photo, my guess is that she was moved in after this one was taken, probably on 9 July. Dwight

    Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #385

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    Quote by drmessimer View Post
    When the U-Deutschland arrived in Baltimore ... one of the men aboard was listed as “K. Prusse, supercargo.” .

    His real name was Gotthold Prusse, a.k.a. William Gotthold Prusse...

    While the U-Deutschland was still in Boston, Simon Lake entered into an agreement with the Hilkens and Friedrich Krupp A. G. to build Deutschland type cargo submarines in the United States. Included in the announcement was that “William Prusse, a Krupp engineer,”
    On September 29th 1922, William G. Prusse applied for a permit to construct a garage in the rear of No 31 Gay Head street in Boston, MA. According to Volume 14, p. 1098 of the CITY RECORD, The Official Publication of the City of Boston.

    For more info on this former Krupp engineer yo may wish to consult the name lists associated with the Immigration Act of 1917 especially in the section labeled expanded categories of “undesirable aliens” After all, there was a war on and Herr Prusse would not have been just another new German American.

    Good Hunting Dwight!

  6. #386

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    STBaltimore: Thanks for that. But by 1922 he was already five years dead. Unless somebody is hiding something, and I certainly don't believe in conspiracy theories. Dwight.

  7. #387

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

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    Gentlemen,

    In regards to an early Photoshop job, I give you the following from two postcards.

    Steve

  8. #388

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    A repost of post 225.

    "Possibility #3: The Bremen was sunk by British submarine G13 with a torpedo.

    Gentlemen,

    In the book The Underwater War, Submarines 1914-1918 by Edwyn Gray pages 218-219 state:

    “Although never officially confirmed, Bradshaw also attacked in damage the giant submarine Bremen which, with Deutschland, acted as underwater freighters scuttling between New York and Germany. G.13 cited the U-boat at long-range and her first two torpedoes, fired from bow- tubes, missed. Bradshaw swung around the submarine and fired his starboard beam-tube and, when this also failed to score, came around in a complete circle to aim a pot- shot from his port- beam tube.
    But this to, missed the target, and with Bremen rapidly vanishing into the distance, Bradshaw played his last card. Bringing G.13 end-on to the U-boat he released his last torpedo from the stern-tube. The range was 7000 yards and any chance of success seemed impossibly remote, even assuming the torpedo would have traveled that far under its own power. But the law of averages swung his way and in the distance he heard the sound of an underwater explosion.

    The Admiralty, however, was not convinced and refused to credit G.13's Capt. with a positive sinking. It was only after the war that Bradshaw's claim was vindicated. The Bremen had been struck by the torpedo but she did not actually sink. Despite serious damage her crew succeeded in getting her back to Germany for repairs and she was still afloat in 1918, converted to a surface vessel.”

    Yes, we all know the U-Bremen never made it back to Germany; however, this may be a very creditable possibility about the attack. "

    Conclusion:

    Gentlemen,

    Back to the business at hand, locating the Bremen. Well it looks like the lead on G.13 is petered out. It turns out the G.13 wasn't commissioned until September 23, 1916 (Wikipedia, the British National Archives). That was just short of a full month after the Bremen left port. The fate that befell the Bremen happened well before September 23. Whatever U-boat the G.13 shot at, if it actually shot at a U-boat, it definitely wasn't the Bremen. Oh well… Back to the drawing board.

    Bugger!!

    Steve

    P.S At least we know what didn't happen.

  9. #389

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    Steve: That's a good example of early "photo-shopping." Actually, those guys were pretty talented with that sort of so-called "trick" photography. I do find it humorous that König is dressed in oils and standing in a Victorian garden.

    I'm glad to see that you practiced what is called "historical method," which is checking out all the possibilities before accepting a statement at face value. Below is an article about Capt. John Thompson who was a British merchant captain in WWI. In this article, which I hope is large enough for all of you to read, he is known as "Deutschland Thompson" for having rammed and sunk the U-155 in June 1917 in the Mediterranean. Despite obvious fabrications, the reporter accepted the captain's story without question. The fact is that the U-155 didn't go into service until 28 August 1917, two months after Thompson alledgedly rammed her. And then there is the embarassing fact that the boat survived the war. This illustrates a historical research truism; don't believe everything you read in a newspaper. Dwight

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  10. #390

    Default Re: Cargo Submarine U-Deutschland Artifacts and Model

    Quote by drmessimer View Post
    STBaltimore: The photo below shows the boat having just arrived in her berth on 9 July, and there is no sign f the Neckar, though the ship might be just out of the photo. But looking at this photo, my guess is that she was moved in after this one was taken, probably on 9 July. Dwight

    >>>
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    Compare Attachment 336523 above with the one below showing the TIMMINS, DEUTSCHLAND & the little Motor Launch EFCO and you will see that the Barge GEORGE MAY would be lying just out of the top picture to the left.

    The MAY would be brought in alongside DEUTSCHLAND'S port side and then later taken away during the submersible's subsequent pier-side test dives.

    The little shed/house is visible in both top and bottom images.

    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_ceTHyOrA16w/S23UjpJ69uI/AAAAAAAAA1I/hzQ5RIJr4zI/s320/normal_00673.jpg

    SS NECKAR, on the other hand, would have been placed on the outbound or opposite side of the McLean pier beyond the expedient burlap bag anti-view screen concocted on the high board and wire fence just to the right of the pier walkway.

    For those interested, there is a set of rails running out onto the pier accessible from a large door not easily seen behind the far grouping of men and the waiting brow (gangway)
    Last edited by STBaltimore; 04-26-2012 at 01:27 AM. Reason: Link Clarification

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