Klaus Scholtz

Fregattenkapitän (Crew 27)

24 ships sunk, total tonnage 111,546 GRT
1 auxiliary warship sunk, total tonnage 16,644 GRT

Born  22 Mar 1908 Magdeburg
Died  1 May 1987(79)Bad Schwartau, Germany

Fregattenkapitän Klaus Scholtz


11 Oct 1927 Seekadett
1 Apr 1929 Fähnrich zur See
1 Oct 1931 Leutnant zur See
1 Oct 1933 Oberleutnant zur See
1 Oct 1936 Kapitänleutnant
1 Nov 1941 Korvettenkapitän
1 Jul 1944 Fregattenkapitän


  Iron Cross 2nd Class
  Iron Cross 1st Class
26 Dec 1941 Knights Cross
10 Sep 1942 Knights Cross with Oak Leaves

U-boat Commands

U-108 22 Oct 1940 14 Oct 1942   8 patrols (361 days) 

Kapitänleutnant Klaus Scholtz

Klaus Scholtz began his naval career in 1927 and spent most of his time before war began on torpedo boats (G-8, G-11 and Jaguar). He was Jaguar’s commanding officer from June 1937 to April 1939.

In April 1940 he transferred to the U-boat force. After only four months of training he commissioned U-108, a large type IXB boat. On his first patrol in February 1941 he sank two ships with a total of 8,078 tons.

His second patrol was very successful: in April 1941 he sank the British armed merchant cruiser AMC Rajputana (16,644 tons) in the Straits of Denmark.

This dramatic chase is described in the following radio message sent by U-108:

FT an BdU. Eingetroffen Operationsgebiet Donnerstag, 10. April; Samstag, 12. April Hilfskreuzer gesichtet. Erster Angriff ein Torpedo, Fehlschuß. Zweiter Angriff: Zweierfächer. Gegner weggezackt. Verfolgung bis Eisgrenze. Angriff bei Dunkelheit abgebrochen. 13. April Hilfskreuzer gesichtet und Angriff. Dreierfächer. Zwei Treffer, ein Torpedoversager. Hilfskreuzer gestoppt. Fangschuß. Gegner gesunken. An Untergangsstelle zwei Zerstörer und Sunderland. Name des Hilfskreuzers 'Rajputana'.

(Radiogram to BdU. Reached operational area on Thursday 10 April; Saturday 12 April armed merchant cruiser in sight. First attack one torpedo, failure firing. Second attack: double shot. Enemy zigzagging. Pursuit to the edge of the ice. Attack terminated by darkness. 13 April sighted and attacked armed merchant cruiser. Triple shot. Two hits, one torpedo failure. Armed merchant cruiser stopped. Coup de grace. Enemy sunk. At sinking position two destroyers and a Sunderland. Name of the armed merchant cruiser 'Rajputana'.)

The BdU answered a half hour later:

Gut gemacht! Kommandant und Besatzung ausspreche Anerkennung. Rückmarsch. Dönitz.

Well done. Express acknowledgment to commander and crew. Return to base. Dönitz.

Kptlt. Scholtz on the conning tower

On the next three patrols Scholtz led U-108 against convoys in the Atlantic. In January 1942 she left Lorient to join the second wave of U-boats attacking shipping off the US east coast in the follow-up to Operation Paukenschlag (Drumbeat). There Scholtz sank five ships with a total of 20,082 tons.

His last two patrols in US and Caribbean waters were also successful. In October 1942 Klaus Scholtz left U-108 to command the 12th Flotilla based at Bordeaux.

This flotilla included most of the long-range type IX boats, which operated in the South Atlantic and the Indian Ocean. During August 1944 most of the boats left the base for Flensburg. The flotilla's history ended in August 1944 when it was dissolved. The remaining men (some 220) under Fregkpt. Klaus Scholtz attempted to march overland back to Germany. They left Bordeaux on 26 August 1944 but were captured on 11 September by American forces in Beaujancie/Loire (France). Klaus Scholtz then spent the next 18 months in US captivity.

After the war he served from 1953 to 1956 in the naval arm of the Bundesgrenzschutz (Federal Frontier Guard), then transferred to the Bundesmarine (Federal German Navy). He commanded several naval bases, including Kiel, Cuxhaven and Wilhelmshaven. In 1966 he retired with the rank of Kapitän zur See.


Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II.
Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1997). Der U-Bootkrieg 1939-1945 (Band 2).
Rohwer, J. (1998). Axis Submarine Successes of World War Two.

Patrol info for Klaus Scholtz

 U-boat Departure Arrival  
1. U-108 15 Feb 1941  Wilhelmshaven  12 Mar 1941  Lorient  Patrol 1,26 days
2. U-108 3 Apr 1941  Lorient  2 May 1941  Lorient  Patrol 2,30 days
3. U-108 25 May 1941  Lorient  7 Jul 1941  Lorient  Patrol 3,44 days
4. U-108 19 Aug 1941  Lorient  21 Oct 1941  Lorient  Patrol 4,64 days
5. U-108 9 Dec 1941  Lorient  25 Dec 1941  Lorient  Patrol 5,17 days
6. U-108 8 Jan 1942  Lorient  4 Mar 1942  Lorient  Patrol 6,56 days
7. U-108 30 Mar 1942  Lorient  1 Jun 1942  Lorient  Patrol 7,64 days
8. U-108 13 Jul 1942  Lorient  10 Sep 1942  Lorient  Patrol 8,60 days
8 patrols, 361 days at sea

Ships hit by Klaus Scholtz

Date U-boat Name of ship Tons Nat. Convoy
22 Feb 1941U-108 Texelstroom1,617nl
28 Feb 1941U-108 Effna6,461br
13 Apr 1941U-108 HMS Rajputana (F 35)16,644brHX-117
2 Jun 1941U-108 Michael E.7,628brOB-327
8 Jun 1941U-108 Baron Nairn3,164brOB-328
8 Jun 1941U-108 Dirphys4,240grOB-328
10 Jun 1941U-108 Christian Krohg1,992nwOB-329
25 Jun 1941U-108 Ellinico3,059grOG-65
25 Jun 1941U-108 Nicolas Pateras4,362grOB-336
1 Jul 1941U-108 Toronto City2,486br
14 Dec 1941U-108 Cassequel4,751pt
19 Dec 1941U-108 Ruckinge2,869brHG-76
8 Feb 1942U-108 Ocean Venture7,174br
9 Feb 1942U-108 Tolosa1,974nw
12 Feb 1942U-108 Blink2,701nw
16 Feb 1942U-108 Ramapo2,968pa
18 Feb 1942U-108 Somme5,265brON-62
25 Apr 1942U-108 Modesta3,849br
29 Apr 1942U-108 Mobiloil9,925am
5 May 1942U-108 Afoundria5,010am
6 May 1942U-108 Abgara4,422le
20 May 1942U-108 Norland8,134nwON-93
3 Aug 1942U-108 Tricula6,221brE-6
7 Aug 1942U-108 Breñas2,687nw
17 Aug 1942U-108 Louisiana8,587am

25 ships sunk (128,190 tons).

We have a picture of this vessel.

Media links

German U-boat Commanders of World War II

Busch, Rainer and Röll, Hans-Joachim

Listing of all U-boat commanders

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