List of all U-boats

U-591

Type

VIIC

 
Ordered16 Jan 1940
Laid down30 Oct 1940 Blohm & Voss, Hamburg (werk 567)
Launched20 Aug 1941
Commissioned9 Oct 1941Oblt. Hans-Jürgen Zetsche
Commanders
9 Oct 1941 - 8 Sep 1942  Kptlt. Hans-Jürgen Zetzsche
9 Sep 1942 - 12 Nov 1942  Oblt. Peter Schrewe
12 Nov 1942 - 17 May 1943  Kptlt. Hans-Jürgen Zetzsche
15 May 1943 - 17 May 1943  Ltn. Joachim Sauerbier
1 Jun 1943 - 30 Jul 1943  Oblt. Reimar Ziesmer
Career
8 patrols
9 Oct 1941-1 Jan 1942  6. Flottille (training)
1 Jan 1942-30 Jun 1942  6. Flottille (active service)
1 Jul 1942-31 May 1943  11. Flottille (active service)
1 Jun 1943-30 Jul 1943  9. Flottille (active service)
Successes4 ships sunk, total tonnage 19,932 GRT
1 ship damaged, total tonnage 5,701 GRT
Fate

Sunk 30 July, 1943 in the South Atlantic near Pernambuco, in position 08.36S, 34.34W, by depth charges from a US Ventura aircraft (VB-127/B-10). 19 dead and 28 survivors.

Loss position

See the 5 ships hit by U-591 - View the 8 war patrols

Wolfpack operations

U-591 operated with the following Wolfpacks during its career:
   Schlei (21 Jan 1942 - 12 Feb 1942)
   Bums (6 Apr 1942 - 10 Apr 1942)
   Greif (14 May 1942 - 29 May 1942)
   Nebelkönig (27 Jul 1942 - 13 Aug 1942)
   Ungestüm (11 Dec 1942 - 30 Dec 1942)
   Sturmbock (21 Feb 1943 - 26 Feb 1943)
   Wildfang (26 Feb 1943 - 5 Mar 1943)
   Westmark (6 Mar 1943 - 11 Mar 1943)
   Seewolf (21 Mar 1943 - 30 Mar 1943)

Attacks on this boat and other events

15 May 1943
12.36 hrs, west of the Bay of Biscay: the boat was strafed and bombed by a British Whitley bomber (RAF Sqdn 10 OTU/M, pilot F/Sgt G.W. Brookes). The boat was not damaged, but the commander, Kptlt. Hans-Jürgen Zetzsche, and one of the crew were wounded by gunfire, forcing the boat to return to base. (Sources: Norman Franks)

23 Jul 1943
U-591 was twice attacked by an American B-24 Liberator bomber off Cape de Sao Roque, Brazil, but each time escaped by diving instead of fighting it out. (Sources: Blair, vol 2, page 370)

2 recorded attacks on this boat.

Men lost from the boat

29 Jan 1942
In rough seas west of Bantry Bay, Ireland, a lookout broke his arm.

15 May 1943
12.36 hrs, west of the Bay of Biscay: the boat was strafed and bombed by a British Whitley bomber (RAF Sqdn 10 OTU/M, pilot F/Sgt G.W. Brookes). The boat was not damaged, but the commander, Kptlt. Hans-Jürgen Zetzsche, and one of the crew were wounded by gunfire, forcing the boat to return to base.

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

U-boat Emblems

We have 4 emblem entries for this boat. See the emblem page for this boat or view emblems individually below.


The Laughing Sawfish - 9th Flotilla

The Polar Bear - 11th Flotilla

White Eagle

Arm and Sword

Media links


U-Boat Operations of the Second World War - Vol 2

Wynn, Kenneth


German U-Boat Losses During World War II

Niestle, Axel


Hitler's U-boat War, Vol II

Blair, Clay


Hitler's U-boat War

Blair, Clay