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Otto Weddigen

Otto Weddigen books and biography

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The First Submarine Blow


By Otto Weddigen
World War 1

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Otto Weddigen

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Otto Weddigen (September 15, 1882 – March 18, 1915) was a German U-boat commander during World War I.

Born in Herford, he started his military career in the imperial German navy in 1901. In 1910 he was given command of one of the first German submarines, U 9.

On 22 September 1914, while patrolling in the region of the southern North Sea known to the British as the "Broad Fourteens", U 9 intercepted the three warships of the Seventh Cruiser Squadron, also known as the Live Bait Squadron. Weddigen fired off all six of his torpedoes, reloaded while submerged, and in less than an hour sank the three British armoured cruisers HMS Aboukir, HMS Hogue and HMS Cressy. About 1,400 men died, only 300 survived.

Otto Weddigen was awarded with the Iron Cross and, after sinking the HMS Hawke and some merchant ships, with Prussia's highest medal, the Pour le Mrite.

Weddigen died while commanding the submarine U 29. On March 18, 1915, the U-29 was caught on the surface by the British battleship HMS Dreadnought in the Pentland Firth



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