WWI U-boat commanders

Werner Fürbringer

Kapitänleutnant (Crew 4/07)

Successes
101 ships sunk with a total of 97,881 GRT
5 ships damaged with a total of 9,033 GRT

Born:2 Oct 1888 Braunschweig 
Died:8 Feb 1982 Braunschweig 

Werner Fürbringer

Ranks

3 Apr 1907 Seekadett
21 Apr 1908 Fähnrich zur See
28 Sep 1910 Leutnant zur See
27 Sep 1913 Oberleutnant zur See
16 Nov 1917 Kapitänleutnant
6 Mar 1920 Out of naval service
1 Oct 1933 Korvettenkapitän
15 May 1935 Fregattenkapitän
1 Oct 1937 Kapitän zur See (Ergänzungsoffizier)
1 Dec 1942 Konteradmiral

Decorations

 Iron Cross 2nd class
 Iron Cross 1st class
27 Aug 1916  Royal House Order of Hohenzollern

U-boat Commands

UB 220 Feb 1915 - 7 Mar 1916
UB 1710 Mar 1916 - 16 Mar 1916
UB 3929 Apr 1916 - 7 Nov 1916
UC 7022 Nov 1916 - 22 Jun 1917
UC 1722 May 1917 - 3 Aug 1917
UB 5810 Aug 1917 - 7 Feb 1918
UB 11023 Mar 1918 - 19 Jul 1918

Notes

Werner Fürbringer entered the Navy as a marine in Seekadett April 3 1907 by attending the basic course on the training ship SMS Charlotte until March 31 1908. He attended the Naval Academy from April 1, 1908 September 30, 1909, being promoted Fähnrich zur See (21/04/1908). The light cruiser SMS Roon participated in the Asian mission from 1909 to November 1910 being promoted to Leutnant zur See (28/09/1910), when back home was assigned to the armoured cruiser SMS Scharnhost until November 1912. At his request and then got to participate in the course Submarine lasting three months, after which it was shipped as wacht officer on the boat school SM U-1 from January to August 1913.

Promoted to Oberleutnant zur See (27.09.1913) was transferred with the same position on the new submarine oceanic SM U-20 under the U-Boote III Flotilla under the command of Kptlt. Otto Dröscher and Walther Schwiger beginning his war career.

In February 1915 he obtained his first command on the submarine SM UB-2 serving in Flanders Flotilla. Throughout the war he continued to be seconded to this group commanding various units including submarines also two mine-laying, earning accolades with a total of 106,914 tons, sank 102 merchant ships. He was promoted Kapitänleutnant November 16, 1917, and while he was in command of his latest submarine SM UB 110 was attacked with depth charges, 19 July 1918 off the coast of Scarborough and damaged, was forced to re-emerge and finally sunk by HMS Garry. 13 of the crew members were killed and he was captured along with the survivors. Returning from the prison was placed at the disposal of the Naval Command in Kiel until March 1920, when he retired from active service. From 1 January 1927 to 30 September 1933 he was appointed civilian employee at the Naval Command. Promoted Korvettenkapitän October 1, 1933, was taken into service as an instructor and consultant to the Submarine School until 1938 he is also in the last months of 1937 also served as commander of the department and promoted to Kapitän zur See.

Placed at the disposal of the Supreme Command of the Navy, he was awarded in 1938 the position of Chief of the Statistical Office of the Navy and later in 1939 like Chief of Exports of Armaments. At the beginning of the II world war, he was appointed commander of Submarine Defense Department of the Supreme Command of the Navy, which he held until October 31 1942, promoted Konteradmiral when he was appointed Inspector of Armaments of the Eastern Territories. On June 30, 1943 obtained the leave. He died at 94 years in the hometown of Brunswick on 8 Feb. 1982.

His older brother, Gerhardt Fürbringer, was also a U-boat Commander. He was captured when his U-40 was sunk on 23 June 1915.

Thoughts on submarine warfare prior to 1939
In the period immediately prior to the Second World War, Fübringer seems to have written a memorandum (cited in Padfield’s War Beneath the Sea, 1995 ed. p.48) arguing against a U-boat war against England until a way could be found to render U-boats immune to ASDIC, arguing that to commit the valuable U-boat crews [to such a war] would be irresponsible. Moreover, he argued that naval air power would be necessary to destroy convoy escorts and that in the future the roles of the navy and air forces would be so interconnected that these elements must be welded into unity by the outbreak of the war if heavy failures are not to result.

Ships hit by Werner Fürbringer

DateU-boat Name of shipType of shipTonsNat.
 
9 Jun 1915 UB 2 BritanniaFishing vessel (smack)43br
9 Jun 1915 UB 2 EdwardFishing vessel (smack)52br
9 Jun 1915 UB 2 LaurestinaFishing vessel (smack)48br
9 Jun 1915 UB 2 QuiviveFishing vessel (smack)50br
9 Jun 1915 UB 2 WelfareFishing vessel (smack)45br
10 Jun 1915 UB 2 IntrepidFishing vessel (smack)59br
23 Aug 1915 UB 2  MiuraNavy Trawler257br
7 Sep 1915 UB 2 ConstanceFishing vessel (smack)57br
7 Sep 1915 UB 2 EmmanuelFishing vessel (smack)44br
10 Sep 1915 UB 2 Boy ErnieFishing vessel47br
 
26 Feb 1916 UB 2 ArbonneSteamer672br
10 Jul 1916 UB 39 StaffaTrawler176br
13 Jul 1916 UB 39 DalhousieDrifter89br
13 Jul 1916 UB 39 FlorenceTrawler149br
13 Jul 1916 UB 39 Mary Annfishing vessel5br
13 Jul 1916 UB 39 Successfishing vessel6br
14 Jul 1916 UB 39 Ben AdenFishing vessel176br
14 Jul 1916 UB 39 ButeTrawler176br
14 Jul 1916 UB 39 Girls FriendDrifter55br
14 Jul 1916 UB 39 Langley CastleDrifter93br
14 Jul 1916 UB 39 RecorderTrawler149br
1 Aug 1916 UB 39 BraconashFishing vessel192br
1 Aug 1916 UB 39 HelvetiaTrawler167br
1 Aug 1916 UB 39 King JamesFishing vessel163br
1 Aug 1916 UB 39 RhodesiaTrawler110br
1 Aug 1916 UB 39 TatianaTrawler285br
1 Aug 1916 UB 39 ZeelandSteamer1,292nl
2 Aug 1916 UB 39 OlympiaTrawler221br
2 Aug 1916 UB 39 Smiling MornTrawler126br
2 Aug 1916 UB 39 TwiddlerDrifter99br
3 Aug 1916 UB 39 Trawler PrinceTrawler126br
3 Aug 1916 UB 39 LucaniaDrifter92br
3 Aug 1916 UB 39 Merchant PrinceTrawler130br
3 Aug 1916 UB 39 Destro (d.)Steamer859br
4 Aug 1916 UB 39 JägersborgSteamer1,797da
4 Aug 1916 UB 39 StamfordhamSteamer921br
5 Aug 1916 UB 39 Egyptian PrinceTrawler129br
5 Aug 1916 UB 39 St. OliveTrawler202br
6 Sep 1916 UB 39 StrathtaySteamer4,428br
6 Sep 1916 UB 39 TagusSteamer937br
7 Sep 1916 UB 39 MargueriteSailing vessel102fr
7 Sep 1916 UB 39 AlcyonSailing vessel163fr
7 Sep 1916 UB 39 HeathdeneSteamer3,541br
7 Sep 1916 UB 39 MessicanoSteamer4,065it
8 Sep 1916 UB 39 Jeune UnionSailing vessel267fr
8 Sep 1916 UB 39 LyderhornSteamer939nw
8 Sep 1916 UB 39 OlazarriSteamer2,585sp
9 Sep 1916 UB 39 EuropeSailing vessel356fr
9 Sep 1916 UB 39 ProntoSteamer1,411nw
10 Sep 1916 UB 39 LexieSteamer3,778br
11 Sep 1916 UB 39 Fredavoresteamer1,577nw
20 Oct 1916 UB 39 MidlandSteamer4,247br
20 Oct 1916 UB 39 SecundoSteamer1,512nw
21 Oct 1916 UB 39  HebeSteamer775da
21 Oct 1916 UB 39  HelgaSteamer1,182da
22 Oct 1916 UB 39 AlixSteamer1,584nw
 
14 Feb 1917 UC 70 Marthe YvonnePilot boat30fr
16 Mar 1917 UC 70 CordouanPilot boat28fr
16 Mar 1917 UC 70 Margaret Vi (d.)Q-ship852fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 ALCIDE MARIEFishing vessel26fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 Camille EmileFishing vessel20fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 DIEU TE GARDEFishing vessel30fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 JulietteFishing vessel29fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 Louis XivFishing vessel (sail)44fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 NOTRE DAME DU PERPETUEL SECOURSFishing vessel29fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 NOZALFishing vessel34fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 RENEE ISLANDERFishing vessel25fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 RUPELLAFishing vessel38fr
17 Mar 1917 UC 70 TassoSteamer1,859br
18 Mar 1917 UC 70 MadoneFishing vessel (dundee)31fr
18 Mar 1917 UC 70 Entente CordialeFishing vessel (dundee)22fr
18 Mar 1917 UC 70 Felicite AlbertFishing vessel (dundee)32fr
18 Mar 1917 UC 70 HYACINTHE YVONNESailing vessel43fr
19 Mar 1917 UC 70 BergsliSteamer2,133nw
19 Mar 1917 UC 70 MichelSteamer1,773fr
24 Mar 1917 UC 70 Tapirtug200fr
16 Apr 1917 UC 70 EduardSailing vessel476br
17 Apr 1917 UC 70 Nirvana (d.)Steamer6,021br
30 Apr 1917 UC 70 EdenSteamer1,304nw
7 May 1917 UC 70 LowmountSteamer2,070br
18 May 1917 UC 70 C.E.C.G.Sailing vessel47br
18 May 1917 UC 70 DromoreSteamer268br
23 May 1917 UC 70 Begona N°3Steamer2,699sp
27 May 1917 UC 70 General De BoisdeffreSailing vessel2,195fr
28 May 1917 UC 70 AnconaSteamer1,168br
18 Jun 1917 UC 17 BorneoNavy Trawler211br
19 Jun 1917 UC 17 Kate And AnnieSailing vessel96br
19 Jun 1917 UC 17 Mary Ann (d.)Sailing vessel164br
21 Jun 1917 UC 17 Childe HaroldSailing vessel781am
21 Jun 1917 UC 17 ScheriaSteamer2,727it
24 Jun 1917 UC 17 Clan DavidsonSteamer6,486br
24 Jun 1917 UC 17 Crown Of ArragonSteamer4,550br
25 Jun 1917 UC 17 GalenaSailing vessel1,073am
25 Jun 1917 UC 17 Saxon MonarchSteamer4,828br
20 Jul 1917 UC 17 City Of FlorenceSteamer5,399br
21 Jul 1917 UC 17 Augustus WeltSailing vessel1,221am
13 Oct 1917 UB 58 BethelSailing vessel257nw
13 Oct 1917 UB 58 EsmeraldaSailing vessel830sw
19 Nov 1917 UB 58 Minnie ColesSailing vessel116br
19 Dec 1917 UB 58 Saint AndreSteamer2,457fr
22 Dec 1917 UB 58 Clan CameronSteamer3,595br
22 Dec 1917 UB 58 StartSteamer728nw
 
26 Jan 1918 UB 58 Louie BellSailing vessel118br
28 Jan 1918 UB 58 W. H. L.Sailing vessel97br
10 Jul 1918 UB 110 Sprucol (d.)Tanker1,137br
16 Jul 1918 UB 110 SouthboroughSteamer3,709br
 106,914
101 ships sunk (97,881 tons) and 5 ships damaged (9,033 tons).


Legend
(d.) means the ship was damaged.
We have a picture of this vessel.

Media links


Kaiserliche Marine U-Boote 1914-1918

Dufeil, Yves


Fips - Legendary U-boat Commander

Brooks, Geoffrey


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