Date:

Rare German U-boat found in Skagerrak

Sea War Museum Jutland in Thyborøn, Denmark has made a new sensational discovery during its continued registration of shipwrecks in the North Sea and in the Skagerrak.

In April 2018, the museum has found the wreck of the German U-boat U-3523, which was sunk by depth bombs in Skagerrak by a British B24 Liberator aircraft on 6 May, 1945. The day before, the German forces in Denmark, Northwest Germany and the Netherlands had surrendered, and the U-boat was not on a war patrol, but probably on the run.

- Advertisement -

The U-3523 was of the new and highly advanced type XXI U-boats that could have revolutionized the submarine war if enough boats had been completed in due time. 118 boats were laid down, but only two entered active service, and none ever saw battle.

After the war, there were many rumors about top Nazis who fled in U-boats and brought Nazi gold to safety, and the U-3523 fed the rumors. The Type XXI was the first genuine submarine that could sail submerged for a prolonged time, and the U-3523 had a range that would have allowed it to sail non-stop all the way to South America. But nobody knows, if this was the U-boat’s destination, and nobody knows, if the U-boat had valuables or passengers aboard in addition to the 58 crew, all of whom perished.

Image Credit: .seawarmuseum

At 123 meters depth

U-3523 appeared on the screen during the museum’s scan of the seabed ten nautical miles north of Skagen, and the picture was very surprising. Most unusual the whole fore part of the U-boat lies buried in the seabed, while the stern is standing 20 meters above the bottom. The wreck lies at 123 meters of water, making it very difficult to access.

- Advertisement -

So far, it has been thought that the U-3523 was sunk in the waters northeast of Skagen, but the old position was heavily flawed. The U-3523 lies in fact about 9 nautical miles west of the position, which was reported by the British bomber at the time.
Sea War Museum Jutland in Thyborøn has so far found, registered and measured about 450 wrecks in the North Sea and in the Skagerrak. The museum has until now found the wrecks of 12 submarines, 3 of which are British and 9 are German.

After WW2 Britain, the United States, France and the Soviet Union took over a number of German Type XXI U-boats and used them for a number of years in order to profit from the German technology. In the Soviet Union, the submarine became known as the Whiskey class and was used in active service all the way up to the eighties.

Today, there is only one preserved Type XXI U-boat. It lies as a museum boat in the harbour in front of the German Maritime Museum in Bremerhaven.

Sea War Museum

Header Image Credit: Sea War Museum

- Advertisement -
spot_img
Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan
Mark Milligan is multi-award-winning journalist and the Managing Editor at HeritageDaily. His background is in archaeology and computer science, having written over 7,500 articles across several online publications. Mark is a member of the Association of British Science Writers (ABSW), the World Federation of Science Journalists, and in 2023 was the recipient of the British Citizen Award for Education, the BCA Medal of Honour, and the UK Prime Minister's Points of Light Award.
spot_img

Mobile Application

spot_img

Related Articles

Archaeologists search crash site of WWII B-17 for lost pilot

Archaeologists from Cotswold Archaeology are excavating the crash site of a WWII B-17 Flying Fortress in an English woodland.

Roman Era tomb found guarded by carved bull heads

Archaeologists excavating at the ancient Tharsa necropolis have uncovered a Roman Era tomb guarded by two carved bull heads.

Revolutionary war barracks discovered at Colonial Williamsburg

Archaeologists excavating at Colonial Williamsburg have discovered a barracks for soldiers of the Continental Army during the American War of Independence.

Pleistocene hunter-gatherers settled in Cyprus thousands of years earlier than previously thought

Archaeologists have found that Pleistocene hunter-gatherers settled in Cyprus thousands of years earlier than previously thought.

Groundbreaking study reveals new insights into chosen locations of pyramids’ sites

A groundbreaking study, published in the journal Communications Earth & Environment, has revealed why the largest concentration of pyramids in Egypt were built along a narrow desert strip.

Soldiers’ graffiti depicting hangings found on door at Dover Castle

Conservation of a Georgian door at Dover Castle has revealed etchings depicting hangings and graffiti from time of French Revolution.

Archaeologists find Roman villa with ornate indoor plunge pool

Archaeologists from the National Institute of Cultural Heritage have uncovered a Roman villa with an indoor plunge pool during excavations at the port city of Durrës, Albania.

Archaeologists excavate medieval timber hall

Archaeologists from the University of York have returned to Skipsea in East Yorkshire, England, to excavate the remains of a medieval timber hall.