List of all U-boats

U-231

Type

VIIC

 
Ordered7 Dec 1940
Laid down30 Jan 1942 F. Krupp Germaniawerft AG, Kiel (werk 661)
Launched1 Oct 1942
Commissioned14 Nov 1942Kptlt. Wolfgang Wenzel
Commanders
14 Nov 1942 - 13 Jan 1944  Kptlt. Wolfgang Wenzel
Career
3 patrols
14 Nov 1942-30 Apr 1943  5. Flottille (training)
1 May 1943-13 Jan 1944  3. Flottille (active service)
SuccessesNo ships sunk or damaged
Fate

Sunk 13 Jan, 1944 north-east of the Azores, in position 44.15N, 20.38W, by depth charges from a British Wellington aircraft (Sqdn 172/L). 7 dead and 43 survivors.

Loss position

View the 3 war patrols

Wolfpack operations

U-231 operated with the following Wolfpacks during its career:
   Star (27 Apr 1943 - 4 May 1943)
   Fink (4 May 1943 - 6 May 1943)
   Elbe (7 May 1943 - 10 May 1943)
   Elbe 1 (10 May 1943 - 14 May 1943)
   Mosel (19 May 1943 - 22 May 1943)
   Schlieffen (14 Oct 1943 - 22 Oct 1943)
   Siegfried (22 Oct 1943 - 27 Oct 1943)
   Siegfried 1 (27 Oct 1943 - 30 Oct 1943)
   Körner (30 Oct 1943 - 2 Nov 1943)
   Borkum (1 Jan 1944 - 3 Jan 1944)
   Borkum 3 (3 Jan 1944 - 13 Jan 1944)

Attacks on this boat and other events

22 Apr 1943
03.00 hrs, SE of Iceland: a British Catalina flying boat (Sqdn 190/T) strafed U-231 and dropped two bombs. The boat was undamaged, but one man was lost overboard. [Obersteuermann Walter Krause]

at 12.29 hrs, a second Catalina (RAF Sqdn 190/E) dropped four bombs, this time with no effect.

23 Apr 1943
An attack by an unidentified aircraft left the boat with a flooded conning tower. The boat survived to reach France on May 31, after another unidentified aircraft attack on the way. (Sources: Blair, vol 2, page 335)

21 May 1943
Late evening, mid Atlantic in the vicinity of convoy ON 184: a bomb from an American Avenger aircraft (USN VC-9 from escort carrier USS Bogue (CVE 9), pilot Lt Cdr Drane) left the boat with a leak in the stern trimming tank. Chlorine gas from the aft battery compartment forced U-231 to return to base. Because both radio transmitters were also damaged, the boat did not respond to calls from BdU, and was supposed lost for a few days until U-305 reported her situation.

13 Jan 1944
The sinking of U-231 22.55 hrs, approx. 750 miles NE of the Azores: the boat was attacked by British Wellington bomber HF168 (RAF Sqdn 172/L, pilot P/O W.N. Armstrong, RCAF), operating from the Azores, after it was directed to the area by a sighting report from aircraft from USS Block Island. The Wellington dropped three depth charges, but was itself hit by flak which wounded the tail gunner. U-231 then dived, but was found impossible to keep submerged, so the boat surfaced and the crew abandoned ship. The commander attempted suicide by shooting himself in the mouth, but the bullet lodged harmlessly in the back of his neck. Seven men were lost, and the commander and 42 survivors were picked up and taken prisoner the next day by USS Parrott and USS Bulmer, and later transferred to USS Block Island.

4 recorded attacks on this boat.

Men lost from the boat

22 Apr 1943
03.00 hrs, SE of Iceland: a British Catalina flying boat (Sqdn 190/T) strafed U-231 and dropped two bombs. The boat was undamaged, but one man was lost overboard. [Obersteuermann Walter Krause]

at 12.29 hrs, a second Catalina (RAF Sqdn 190/E) dropped four bombs, this time with no effect.

  Related: For more info on such losses see - Men lost from U-boats -

U-boat Emblems

We have 1 emblem entry for this boat. See the emblem page for this boat or view emblems individually below.


Two Crossed Swords on Shield

Media links


U-Boat Operations of the Second World War - Vol 1

Wynn, Kenneth


Hitler's U-boat War, Vol II

Blair, Clay


German U-Boat Losses During World War II

Niestle, Axel