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U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides
Posted by: Ufo ()
Date: October 13, 2008 03:13PM

Hej!

Ok – this might be a strange quest but – hey – someone has to chase the tale:

I am searching for a U-Boat. Well – not any U-Boat in fact.

Local legend here in the West of Scotland tells the following:

In 1921 a German paid a visit to the beautiful Island of Islay, one of the Inner Hebrides. Much to the surprise of the locals he told them that this was in fact not his first visit to Islay. During the Great War he had frequently visited what is a very well sheltered natural harbour on the east cost of Islay. The 'harbour', Clas Uig (or 'Glas Uig' – Gaelic is relatively forgiving where it comes to orthography.) lies well sheltered between two headlands. The valley between is bogy and hardly passable. He tended to venture in, rest, recharge batteries, put two posts on the headlands to be safe from surprise and send a raiding party to nick one or two sheep for the ships larder.

Local shepherds did in fact count unusually high losses during 1916 to 1918. The islanders were more amused than upset and a walk to Clas Uig was organized to visit the memorable place together with the enterprising German captain. The story would have well been forgotten if it had not surfaced [sic] in the 1970s in a Scottish magazine 'Scotish Field'. There is stated that sadly the guest books of the Hotel in Port Ellen where the German captain stayed were long lost.

So no name and subsequently no U-Boat number can be assigned to this lovely story.


Now here opens a can of questions:

Is it true?

Could it be true?

Not every old war story is true! If every complete Messerschmidt Bomber that – according to folklore - lies buried under a housing estate in England the German Luftwaffe would have had to have thrice the numbers.

But then – this story comes with lot of detail.

The facts:
The commander survived the war.
It is quite likely that his boat did survive as well.
He sailed there from at least 1916 to 1918 (Though not necessarily with the same boat. He may have changed boat during his time in that theatre. Was that common in the Imperial German Navy?)
He must have operated from at least 1916 to 1918 more or less uninterrupted around the Hebrides.

Now – is that enough information to narrow down the search?

Could a boat number be assigned to this story? Or may be two, three, four possible boats?

Would such enterprise have found its way into the war diary of the boat? Or would German Naval High Command thought it too risky to make landfall in hostile waters? In that case the adventure probably would have been omitted from the KTB.
Were fuel stores recorded in the war diaries? Would it be possible to spot unusually low fuel consumption it a boat would lie low for periods of time?



Forgive me if this is bunch of silly questions. I really just do not know.

Many thanks for your help!
Ciao,

Ufo

Options: ReplyQuote


Subject Written By Posted
U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Ufo 10/13/2008 03:13PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Yves D 10/13/2008 08:35PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Ufo 10/14/2008 01:30PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Oliver Lörscher 10/14/2008 05:28PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Yves D 10/14/2008 08:59PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides ufo 10/15/2008 12:49PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Oliver Lörscher 10/15/2008 04:58PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides Ufo 10/23/2008 09:55AM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides STUART GEMMELL 02/16/2013 08:51PM
Re: U-Boat making Landfall on Islay, Hebrides farspach 01/23/2009 10:07PM


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