German submarine U-23 (1936)

German Submarine U-23 (1936)

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German submarine U-23 (1936)

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German submarine U-23 was a Type IIB U-boat of the German Kriegsmarine, built in Germaniawerft, Kiel, laid down on April 11, 1936 and commissioned on September 24, 1936.


At 4:45 am on October 4, 1939, U-23 scored one of the early successes of the Kriegsmarine in the war when she torpedoed and sank by gunfire the merchant ship Glen Farg about 60 miles south-southwest of Sumburgh Head. One person died, while 16 survivors were picked up by and landed at Kirkwall the next day.

In 16 patrols U-23 sank seven ships for a total of including two warships, as well as damaging a warship and an auxiliary warship.

Over the course of her service with the Kriegsmarine U-23 had ten commanding officers, the most famous of whom was Kapitänleutnant Otto Kretschmer, who went on to become the top scoring U-boat ace. After service in the Atlantic with the 1st U-boat Flotilla, U-23 served as a school boat with the 21st U-boat Flotilla from July, 1940 until September, 1942. U-23 was then refit and transported overland to the Black Sea port of Constanţa, Romania, with the 30th U-boat Flotilla until September, 1944.


U-23 was scuttled by her crew on September 10, 1944 off the coast of Turkey in the Black Sea at position to prevent capture by the advancing Soviets.

On February 3, 2008, the Telegraph newspaper reported that U-23 had been discovered by Selçuk Kolay, a Turkish marine engineer, in 160 feet of water, three miles from the town of...
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