Treasure hunt to recover 4.5 billion worth of British gold trapped in merchant ships torpedoed by Nazis
Billions of pounds worth of British gold is hidden in the wrecks of merchant ships sunk during the First and Second World Wars, a team of experts believe. Four research groups have spent 25 years producing a database tracking the gold shipped by the British Government to pay for munitions and goods during both World Wars. Of the 7,500 merchant ships sunk, the teams have identified more than 700 which they believe may have been carrying vast quantities of gold and other precious metals.
Divers looted wrecks of sunken ships in Scapa Flow: Men fined in first of its kind case
Two divers who looted the wrecks of the scuttled German fleet in Scapa Flow have been fined £18,000 each in a `unique` Scottish court case. Glasgow dentist Gordon Meek and American businessman Robert Infante systematically removed equipment including telephone units, lanterns and lamps and a ship`s bell from seven battleships and cruisers that lie off Orkney. The spree was detected when people on another charter boat in the popular diving area spotted a diver with a bag full of rusty items.
British second world war shipwrecks in Java Sea destroyed by illegal scavenging
Three British ships and a US submarine that sank in the Java Sea during WW2 have been destroyed by illegal scrap metal scavengers. The UK`s Ministry of Defence said it condemned the `unauthorised disturbance of any wreck containing human remains` and requested Indonesian authorities investigate and take `appropriate action`. The commercial salvaging of war wrecks has caused significant upset among veterans, historians and governments who want to preserve the final resting place of sailors who went down with their ships. A preliminary report from an expedition to document sunken ships, seen by the Guardian, shows that the wrecks of HMS Exeter, a 175m heavy cruiser, and destroyer HMS Encounter have been almost totally removed.
Conflict-Series: A highly rated strategy game series for Android
If you love classic PC war games and legendary strategy board games make sure to check out the highly rated Conflict-series for Android. Some of the WWII Campaigns include D-Day 1944, Operation Barbarossa, Invasion of Poland 1939, France 1940, Kursk 1943, Market Garden, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Rommel's North African campaign, the Battle of Bulge, and the Battle of Berlin 1945. In addition there are American Civil War, First World War and American Revolutionary War scenarios available.
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Sunken WWII-Era British Submarine Found off Danish Coast
The wreck of a British Royal Navy submarine from the Second World War, missing since 1940 after being attacked by German forces, has been found submerged in 40 meters of water off the Danish coast. 76 years ago, the HMS Tarpon was attacked and destroyed by an armed Nazi merchant ship, resulting in the deaths of at least 50 British Navy personnel.
WWII aircraft carrier USS Independence off California coast in amazing state
Famed oceanographer Robert Ballard discovered the Titanic, the Bismarck, the USS Yorktown and John F. Kennedy`s PT-109. On Tuesday, he added another accomplishment to his list of documenting the world`s greatest shipwrecks: the first images in more than six decades of the USS Independence, an iconic World War II aircraft carrier scuttled in 1951 off the California coast, half a mile under the sea.
US submarine USS Herring sunk by Japan in WWII found by Russian expedition
A US submarine that sank during World War II has been discovered on the bottom of the ocean near Matua Island in Russia`s Far Eastern Kuril archipelago by a joint expedition of the Russian Geographical Society (RGS) and Defense Ministry. The records suggest that the vessel is USS Herring, which was sunk by Japanese coastal artillery on June 1, 1944.
Italy finds wreck of WWII submarine with 71 bodies in it near Sardinia
The sunken wreck of a long-lost Second World War submarine, thought to contain the bodies of 71 servicemen sealed inside its airtight chambers, has been found by divers off the coast of Sardinia.
Japan`s underwater graveyard: Photos show the planes, trains and tanks from naval base
Covered in coral and left to rest on the Pacific ocean floor, these are the remains of Japan`s arsenal of military vehicles which were targeted in one of America`s WWII bombing operations. From tanks to submarines, this military equipment was once part of a key Japanese naval base in Chuuk Lagoon, one of the federated states of Micronesia. American Fleet Task Force 58 targeted the naval base on 17 February 1944 during a vital two day mission known as Operation Hailstone. 191,000 tons of war shipping now lies 180 feet down at the bottom of the ocean, untouched since one of Japan`s worst defeats. Much of Japan`s war machines are now covered in a stunning layer of multi-coloured coral and the home to an array of fish and wildlife. American scuba instructor Brandi Mueller was able to photograph the detail of the remaining underwater wrecks at one of the best diving locations in the world, Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia.
U-Boat Used By Escaping Nazi`s Washes up on the Coast of Argentina
Remnants of a World War II German submarine or midget U-boat has washed up on the coast of Argentina. What historians and researchers find most fascinating about this find is that this submarine makes it difficult to deny that that Nazis did not escape the war and fled to Argentina. A historian in Buenos Aires, Fernando Martin Gomez, says that the submarine is a great discovery. The submarine has been hidden for 70 years but is in remarkable shape. Gomez stated that it is a particularly small submarine, which means it could have been used solely for Nazis fleeing to South America.
Submarine graveyard with 24 sunken vessels found off Nagasaki
24 sunken submarines that belonged to the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II have been found on the seabed near the Goto island chain in Nagasaki Prefecture. The submarines are believed to have been dumped there by U.S. forces after the Allied victory. The outlines of the 24 submarines were first spotted in July by coast guard researchers during a geographical study off the island chain by the Kaiyo underwater research vessel. They were all sat about 200 meters down on the seabed and located 35 kilometers east-southeast of Fukuejima island, which is situated at the south end of the chain.
Imperial Japanese Navy`s gigantic submarine likely found off Nagasaki
A ship which is considered to be the Imperial Japanese Navy`s submarine I-402 has been discovered at the bottom of the sea off the Goto Islands, Nagasaki Prefecture. In July the Japan Coast Guard found the sign of the ship, while crews of Nippon TV Network Corp. took a footage of the ship this month. 120-meter-long I-402 was the largest submarine during the World War II with the function to stow three bomber planes. The submarine did not participate in any attack and was submerged by the U.S. military after the war. The presence of I-402 was confirmed for the first time though it has been known that the submarine had been submerged off the islands.
Radioactive Wreck of WWII Aircraft Carrier Discovered Near San Francisco Bay
After more than 60 years — and some of the most intense action that a military vessel has ever seen — a World War II-era aircraft carrier has been re-discovered off the coast of San Francisco, still larded with its final cargo: hundreds of barrels of radioactive waste. The U.S.S. Independence was found in April by archaeologists using sonar-equipped submersible vehicles near the Farallon Islands, some 65 kilometers from San Francisco, California, not far from where it was sunk by the U.S. Navy 64 years ago.
$50m million hoard of silver coins sank by the Nazis is discovered
A hoard of silver coins worth £34million that was sunk by the Nazis on board a steamship has been salvaged by a British-led team at a record depth of 5,150m (17,000ft). The SS City of Cairo was travelling from Bombay to England in 1942 when it was torpedoed by a U-boat, taking 100 tons of rupees with it to the bottom of the ocean. It was long assumed that the vessel`s cargo, belonging to the UK Treasury, would be lost forever. That was until a team led by British expert John Kingsford used pioneering techniques to track down the ship with powerful sonar and robotics.
Billionaire Paul Allen`s team finds sunken Japanese warship Musashi
A team led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen has found the sunken Japanese warship Musashi, one of the largest battleships ever built, where it was sunk during World War Two off the coast of the Philippines. US aircraft sank the Musashi on Oct. 24, 1944, killing more than 1,000 Japanese, or about half the vessel`s crew. The Musashi, named after a province in Japan, was commissioned in August 1942. The Musashi weighed 73,000 tons when fully loaded and had nine main guns, along with aircraft and other features. Its largest guns fired shells weighing more than 1.5 tons, and the ship itself measured nearly 863 feet (263 metres) in length.
Sunken World War II German U-boat U-576 and freighter found off coast of Cape Hatteras
The U-boat skipper, Hans-Dieter Heinicke, had a crippled submarine and was headed home when he spotted the allied convoy off the coast of North Carolina. Heinicke saw the 19 merchant vessels of convoy KS-520 plodding south at 8 knots as a chance to redeem himself. About 4 p.m. on July 15, 1942, 30 miles off Cape Hatteras, U-576 attacked. In the ensuing free-for-all, the sub sank one ship and damaged two others but was assailed by aircraft and escorts, and sank with all hands. Recently researchers discovered the wreck of U-576, as well as the wreck of the sunken merchant ship, and hailed the find as a rare snapshot of a little known chapter of World War II.
Wrecked German World War Two U-boat found off Seaham coast
Scientists have discovered the wreck of a German U-boat off the coast of Seaham. The latest satellite and computer technology has revealed the scattered parts of the submarine on the bottom of the North Sea. The U-boat was destroyed with depth charges by an RAF aircraft near the end of the Second World War.
New images captured of WWII Nazi U-boat in Gulf of Mexico
The Gulf of Mexico continues to hold historic World War II treasures, from sunken ships to one of Hitler`s U-boats. This week a diving expedition captured new images of the German wreckage. Historians say it serves as a reminder of how close the Nazis came to American soil. "It is a static time capsule and all of these ship wrecks in deep water are just that. There moments frozen in time, in history," said Richie Kohler, a shipwreck historian helping with the expedition. Submerged in the Gulf of Mexico just south of the mouth of the Mississippi River sits a barnacle encrusted U-boat tomb.
Wreckage of World War II-era Japanese submersible aircraft carrier found off Hawaii
Recently, the wreckage of one of the Japanese Imperial Navy`s most advanced pieces of equipment from World War II was discovered off the coast of Hawaii. What exactly was it? A submarine, or maybe an aircraft carrier? It was both. Researchers from the University of Hawaii came across an unusual bit of wreckage while scouring the sea floor. Both the US and Japanese government have now officially recognized the sunken hull as being that of the I-400, the very first completed vessel from the I-400 submarine line. At the time of its completion in the shipyards of Hiroshima Prefecture`s city of Kure, the I-400 was the world`s largest submarine. At 122 meters (400 feet) long and with a displacement of 6,560 tons, it was the size of a destroyer, and capable of circling the globe one and a half times on a single fueling.
Wreck of Nazi U-boat submarine located in Java Sea
A group of Indonesian archeologists has discovered the wreck of a German U-boat that sank during World War II lying on the floor of the Java Sea about 100 kilometers from Karimunjawa Island. `This is a spectacular discovery in the history of Indonesian archeology. This is the first of its kind in the country,` chairman of the National Archeology Center, Bambang Sulistyanto, said. The team of 16 people has yet to find any physical evidence such as symbols on the hull of the submarine to confirm that it was a German vessel, but it has found plates with the Nazi swastika printed on them. `We found two plates inside the submarine. This finding strengthens our belief that it is one of the two German U-boats that sank in the Java Sea during World War II.`
Footage: World War II Soviet submarine found off Swedish coast of Öland in Baltic Sea
A Soviet submarine that was sunk by German action during World War Two has been found off the coast of Sweden. Sweden`s Försvarsmakten armed forces announced that the vessel had been discovered near the island of Öland in the Baltic Sea, an area which Nazi Germany`s infamous Kriegsmarine heavily mined during the war. The vessel, believed to be the S6 which went down in September 1941, was found by civilian divers over the summer. Since then the Swedish salvage ship Belos has photographed the wreckage, which displays Russian text as well as hammer and sickle symbol of the Soviet Union.
WWII wreck photos: 48 tons of silver recovered from S.S. Gairsoppa
Row after row of silver bricks lie stacked aboard the sunken S.S. Gairsoppa, torpedoed in the North Atlantic by a Nazi U-boat in 1941. The Odyssey Marine Exploration salvage company this month announced it had retrieved 48 of the 240 tons of silver in the British merchant steamship`s hull.
UFO at bottom of Baltic sea may be a top-secret Nazi anti-submarine defence
Divers exploring a UFO-shaped object in the Baltic sea say that the strange object might be a Nazi device lost beneath the waves. Sonar scans have shown that the device, raised 10ft above the seabed and measuring 200ft by 25ft, could be the base of an anti-submarine weapon built with wire mesh which could have baffled submarine radar, leading enemy craft to crash. Former Swedish naval officer and WWII expert Anders Autellus says that the structure could be the base of a device designed to block British and Russian submarine movements. It would have been built of double-skinned concrete and reinforced with wire mesh to baffle radar - which could explain why the dive team`s equipment repeatedly failed near the mystery object.
Italy finds battleship Roma which was sunk in 1943 by German warplane
An Italian battleship which sank during World War II off the coast of Sardinia after it was bombed by a German warplane has been found. The battleship Roma - one of the Italian navy`s most modern vessels in the period - was sunk on September 9, 1943, by a German plane, in an attack which killed 1,352 sailors. Only 622 people survived. The wreck was found by an underwater robot named Pluto Palla. It was discovered 16 nautical miles (30 kilometres) off the northern coast of Sardinia at a depth of around 1,000 metres (3,300 feet).
Wreck of Darkdale, the first British ship torpedoed south of the equator, leaking oil
UK Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) team is heading to the South Atlantic island of St Helena to survey the wreck of a tanker sunk by a German U-boat. RFA (Royal Fleet Auxiliary) vessel Darkdale became the first British ship sunk south of the equator during the war when U-68 slammed four torpedoes into her side as she lay at anchor off Jamestown in the early hours of 22 October 1941. Now oil is gradually seeping from the hull into the 40-metre deep waters of James Bay and the DE&S survey will decide what, if any, action is needed to prevent the Darkdale becoming an environmental hazard.
Neil Cunningham-Dobson, who discovered WWII fighter holding a $237 million treasure, recalls the mission
A marine archaeologist told how his sea exploration company discovered two World War fighters containing silver bullion worth $237 million. Scotsman Neil Cunningham-Dobson was at the controls of the Remotely Operated Vehicle as the WW2 cargo ship SS Gairsoppa and the WW1 steamer SS Mantola were discovered in the North Atlantic last year. Both of the vessels - 100 miles apart - were sunk by German U-Boats. Cunningham-Dobson`s employers Odyssey Marine Exploration will be able to keep 80% of the silver once they have recovered it. He said as his team found the SS Gairsoppa, all he could think about was his father who served on a similar WWII ship.
WWII shipwreck holding 71 tons of Platinum (worth $3 billion) located in Boston Harbor`s back yard
Sub Sea Research LLC has located the worlds richest shipwreck, a WWII British Freighter carrying a secret cargo of 71 tons of Platinum sunk by a German U-Boat off the coast of Cape Cod. Sub Sea Research (SSR) spent months searching for the elusive ship, the Port Nicholson, torpedoed by German U-boat U87, June 1942. The Port Nicholson - a steel-hulled, 481 ft. merchant ship - was carrying two special envoy USSR agents overseeing the delivery of a very important Lend-Lease payment from the USSR to USA.
Wreck of British WWII submarine HMS Olympus (N35) discovered in Mediterranean
Aurora Trust, a not-for-profit ocean exploration and education foundation, has solved a WW2 British mystery. On May 8, 1942 the British submarine HMS Olympus (N35) left the British Naval Base in the Grand Harbor of Malta, that was blockaded by the Germans and Italians. But the Olympus didn`t get far before striking a mine and sinking. For nearly 70 years, nobody knew exactly where the 283-foot sub`s final resting spot was. Only nine of the 98 men aboard survived, swimming 7 miles in cold water. A year ago, the marine archaeology survey team discovered the sub using side scan sonar. The team returned a few months later with deep-sea robotic vehicles to videotape the wreck — twice as deep as recreational divers can go.
Military orders survey for explosives at World War II wrecks off Newfoundland, Canada
The military has ordered a detailed survey of two WWII shipwrecks off Newfoundland for fear divers might trigger leftover explosives. The two wrecks are among four sunk by torpedoes fired from Nazi U-boats prowling the waters off Bell Island, N.L., in 1942. The iron-ore transports SS Saganaga and P.L.M. 27 each carried arms to counter such attacks as they travelled to and from the steel mills in Cape Breton. Since the sinkings 69 years ago, divers have flocked to the two well-preserved wreck sites, located in relatively shallow waters. A previous survey in 2005 suggested the ships may still have live ammunition scattered on the decks.
Unearthing WWII B-17 and B-26 wrecks from alligator-infested swamp in Florida
For archaeologist Kathy Couturier her history investigation began about three years ago at the Avon Park Air Force Range in south central Florida, when she took a job as the range`s Cultural Resource Manager/Archaeologist. Her investigation into WWII crashes began with whispers about a B-26, which she eventually located in an alligator-infested swamp. After that Couturier began pursuing tips that a B-17 was buried on the property.
Photos: Wreck of British ship SS Thistlegorm, which carried tanks and motorcycles, has become a diving hotspot
Amazing photographs of the wreckage of SS Thistlegorm, a ship sunk by Nazi bombs, show why it has become a shipwreck explorers hotspot. The ship was on what was to be her final mission delivering supplies to allies in Egypt when it was hit by a bomb in the middle of the night sending cargo of locomotives, tanks, airplane parts and motorcycles to the sea bed. The wreck was discovered by French explorer Jacques Cousteau in the early fifties, however, Cousteau had the mast cut off to hide it from would-be thieves. The WWII relic was rediscovered in the nineties and became a hotspot for shipwreck explorers and divers.
Divers explore WWII shipwrecks along the coast of the Hawaiian island of Maui
Scuba-diving scientists have explored sunken WWII-era shipwrecks and aircraft along the southern coast of the Hawaiian island of Maui. The survey team - by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric (NOAA) and the University of Hawaii - produced scaled drawings and took photographs of six wreck sites, including a carrier-based dive bomber (SB2C-1C Helldiver); a carrier-based fighter plane (F6F Hellcat); and three amphibious assault vehicles (LVT-4 and LVTA-4s), two with mounted 75mm howitzers. The documentation is used to evaluate wrecks for deterioration and helps with identification when artifacts have been moved or go missing.
Odyssey tries to salvage $260 million of silver in Nazi-torpedoed British steam ship SS Gairsoppa
Odyssey Marine Exploration - a company specialized in the salvage of deep-water shipwrecks - is attempting to recover silver treasure valued at $260 million from a ship torpedoed by a Nazi U-boat. In 2010 the treasure hunting company was awarded a contract by the U.K. government that allows it to keep 80% of the bullion treasure of the SS Gairsoppa, a cargo steamer sunk by German U-101 off the Irish coast in 1941. Depending on the weather, hunting for the Gairsoppa may start as early as May 2011 using sonar, metal detectors and undersea robots.
Montebello, an oil-filled WWII tanker torpedoed by a Japanese submarine off California coast, may pose threat
Scientists are studying sonar images of a shipwreck - a rusting time bomb filled with 3.5 million gallons of crude oil. The American tanker Montebello was sank by a Japanese submarine 4 miles off the California coast Dec. 23, 1941 - 16 days after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Japanese submarine attacks on ships off California`s coast caused a panic in the early WWII days when the West Coast was undefended. A robot submarine from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute explored the wreck to answer to two major questions: Is the oil still aboard the Montebello, and if it is, will the oil seep to the surface.
Discovery of 6 U-boat wrecks rewrites the history books - More subs sunk by mines than thought
The wrecks of 6 German U-boats sunk in the last months of World War II`s greatest naval conflict have been identified. And maritime experts say the wrecks (U-400, U-102, U-326, U-325, U-1208, U-650) force historians to reconsider the battle of the Atlantic. Many U-boats - claimed to be sunk by Allied air and naval forces - were in reality sunk by mines. The findings reveal that coastal minefields were 3 times more effective than British naval intelligence gave them credit for. For example U-1021 was sunk by mines - hundreds of miles away from location where the Royal Navy reportedly sunk it with depth charges.
Wreck of World War II freighter Rosandra found off Albania?
Using undersea scanning devices, archaeologists from the U.S. and Albania think they have located the wreckage of an Italian ship that British forces torpedoed. The remnants - 140km southwest of Tirana - very likely are part of the 8,000-ton Rosandra freighter, which was torpedoed by a British submarine on June 14, 1943. Six people perished in the attack on the Axis vessel, which was carrying 400 tons of food and military supplies to Italian occupation forces in Greece. Albania was under Fascist Italian occupation from 1939 until September 1943. Italy lost 90% of its merchant fleet in World War Two.
Russia finds World War II Nazi arms ship carrying over 10,000 shells in Baltic
Russian authorities are gearing up to deal with a huge arsenal of shells in a sunken German World War II barge off the Baltic coast. The wreck is 1.5km (0.9 miles) from the shore, near the town of Baltiysk, and 20m (66ft) down. Over 10,000 shells containing explosives are on board, but without detonators. The removal operation - which involves 18 divers - could take up to 2 years. Once ashore, the shells will be detonated by engineers at a military site. Baltiysk is in Russia`s Kaliningrad region - a scene of intense fighting in the Second World War.
Treasure hunt is on for £70m silver hoard aboard SS Gairsoppa, sunk by the U-boat U101
An official undertaking to find a ship containing £70 million worth of silver - and sunk during World War II - is to be announced by the UK government which has joined forces with a private treasure hunting company in the hope of salvaging the treasure. The target is the SS Gairsoppa, which was on its way from India to Britain in 1941 with a cargo of silver ingots when it was sunk by the German U-boat U101. Under the agreement, Odyssey Marine Exploration will have two years to find and salvage the silver, which will be split between Odyssey and the transport department.
Team finds Australian hospital ship AHS Centaur, torpedoed by a Japanese sub in WW2
An Australian hospital ship torpedoed by a Japanese submarine during World War II with the loss of 268 lives has been located near the coast of the Queensland. The loss of the Centaur in 1943 was one of Australia`s great wartime disasters. Survivors have long campaigned for the search mission, fearing looters would reach it first. The wreck`s location had been confirmed by a team led by American marine search expert David Mearns. The Centaur was sunk near Brisbane by a torpedo fired from a submarine commanded by Hajime Nakagawa. The sinking of the Centaur was considered a war crime, but no one was ever tried for it.
Deep-sea mission off Fujairah shores reveals new details behind sinking of WW2 Nazi submarine U-533
The Gulf of Oman have given up secrets of the sinking of Nazi submarine U-533 during the World War II. Several years after the discovery of the U-boat on the seabed 108 metres below by shipwreck hunter William Leeman, a new deep-sea mission to the U-boat has confirmed a fatal blast hole was ripped into her rear port side, sending the U-boat and 52 crew members to the abyss. Leeman and his team of divers discovered the 2-metre gash near her propellers, confirming reports by RAF Squadron 244 that a British light bomber (Blenheim) had scored a direct strike on the submarine on Oct. 16, 1943. Only one U-533 survivor escaped to safety from the submarine.
Two WW2-era Japanese attack subs, designed for a stealth attack on the U.S. East Coast, discovered
Two Second World War-era Japanese attack submarines have been discovered near Pearl Harbor. Designed for a stealth attack on the American East Coast the "samurai subs" were fast, far-ranging, and in some cases carried folding-wing aircraft, says Dik Daso, curator of modern military aircraft at the Smithsonian`s Air and Space Museum, speaking in the new National Geographic documentary film "Hunt for the Samurai Subs." When the war ended the U.S. Navy took over the Japanese fleet, sinking 5 samurai submarines to keep the technology out of the hands of the Soviet Union. The military didn`t record where the boats had been sunk.
Footage from the wreck of trawler YP-389, which lost a 90min surface battle with the German U-701
A World War II Navy patrol boat, untouched off the coast of Hatteras since it was sunk by a Nazi submarine in 1942, has been discovered. The converted trawler YP-389 was found during the leg of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration`s Battle of the Atlantic expedition, said maritime archaeologist Joe Hoyt. The ship`s discovery was made from footage taken by a diving robot and confirmed with historical records. YP-389 lost a 90-minute surface battle with the u-boat U-701 on June 19, 1942. The YP-389 used .30-caliber machine guns and depth charges, while the Germans returned fire with 20mm flak guns and 88mm deck guns.
One-of-a-kind WWII wreck near Manoel Island in Malta facing an uncertain future
The one-of-a-kind Second World War wreck near Manoel Island is facing an uncertain future after the company responsible for building a yacht marina in the area is unwilling to give a guarantee to protect it. The wreck in question is a unique X127 Waterlighter sunk in 1942, which lies intact in the Lazzaretto Creek. It was called as a great diving site by a number of divers who wanted to make sure it was preserved. However, the plans released by the government for the yacht marina did not give any indication of how it will be protected.
5 Soviet WWII subs lie at the sea bottom in Bulgarian territorial waters
Military history expert Atanas Panayotov: We have 5 Soviet submarine wrecks in Bulgarian territorial waters. 4 of these have been explored while one has not yet been found, though we have a good hunch of its presumed location. The mission of the subs was to cut German communications between Romania and the Bosporus and Italy. Upon entering Bulgarian territorial waters the submarines faced the danger of naval mines, by means of which Bulgaria, though not involved in the war, had set up its safe zones. East of Varna is the SHT-211, and south of Varna is the SHT-204. The vessels near Shabla are SHT-210 and Л-24, which is a mine-laying submarine.
Soviet sub wreck - a Soviet S-2 class submarine - discovered near Åland islands
The wreck of a WWII-era Soviet submarine have been discovered by a team of Swedish divers near the Åland islands (between Sweden and Finland in the Baltic Sea). The vessel, a Soviet S-2 class submarine, was sunk by mines in 1940, killing all 50 crew members. Documents from the Swedish military archives say that the S-2 sub was sunk by Swedish mines in Swedish waters, while Finnish records say the vessel sank in Finnish waters. Among the divers was Ingvald Eckerman, grandson of J.A. Eckerman, who stood watch at the Märket lighthouse on Jan 2nd, 1940 and saw the sinking. [Watch video]
The wreck of the City of Rayville, the first US vessel lost during WW2, discovered
Researchers have located the rusty wreck of the City of Rayville, the first US vessel lost during World War 2, nearly 69 years after it sank off the coast of Cape Otway. Destroyed by a Nazi mine on Nov. 8, 1940, the exact location of the ship - heading via Melbourne to New York with its cargo of lead, wool and copper - had remained a mystery. However, Deakin University researchers led by Daniel Ierodiaconou used multi-beam sonar imagery and remotely operated video equipment to locate the wreck 14km south of Cape Otway Lighthouse and took the first detailed images of the ship, 70 meters below the surface.
Finding Nazi U-boat off the Jersey coast
The Nazi U-boat that once hunted near New York and New Jersey lay undiscovered for 45 years just 60 miles off the Jersey coast. It wasn`t until 1991, when shipwreck diver John Chatterton surfaced from 230 feet, holding two plates with a swastika and the year "1942" engraved on them, that anyone even knew the submarine was there. It would take 6 years to id the German u-boat. The proof finally came in the form of 3 tags with the number U-869. The search was chronicled in book "Shadow Divers" by Robert Kurson, and in the PBS documentary film "Hitler`s Lost Sub."
Adventurer Justin Taylan focuses on World War II wrecks
Justin Taylan writes on his site, pacificwrecks.org, that his fascination with World War II began with war stories told to him by his grandfather, "who was a combat photographer and soldier in the Pacific." Taylan went on to write book "No Place for a Picnic," about his grandfather, after touring WWII locations with him. Yet Taylan`s interest goes farther, maybe because WWII is not long gone - wrecks from the war still sit in their final resting places. "This project has brought me in contact with people from all over the world, including WWII Pacific veterans, their relatives, descendents, historians, travelers, authors and explorers."
Hawai`i Undersea Research Laboratory solves military mysteries
The main mission of the Hawai`i Undersea Research Laboratory isn`t to record the many military ships and planes it locates. Rather, it`s to study deep-water marine processes in the Pacific. But thanks to training and trial dives in two submersibles, the Pisces IV and Pisces V, the lab has made some noteworthy historical finds, and done some pretty good detective work. The latest in a long line of notable discoveries may be a Douglas SBD Dauntless that was downed on Dec. 7, 1941. On the same day the SBD tail section was identified, the research lab came upon the S-19, a WWI-vintage submarine that was scuttled off Pearl Harbor in 1938.
Paradise island threatened by wrecked World War II oil tanker
60 years on and the impacts of world war 2 are still being felt. A sunken oil tanker, one of dozens on the bottom of Micronesia`s Chuuk Lagoon, is releasing purple diesel bubbles. On 31 July, the oil slick was 5km long. Corrosion experts say the 52 wrecks in Chuuk Lagoon could collapse in a few years, yet no-one knows how much fuel was inside the vessels when they went down. The problem could take on huge proportions, as over 380 other tankers lie at the bottom of the Pacific. Maritime archaeologist Bill Jeffery is seeking Japanese historians and shipping experts who could estimate the contents of the Hoyo Maru`s oil storage tanks.
Thames reveals forgotten wrecks: 1665 warship, World War II gunboat
The largest post-war salvage operation on the Thames has discovered 7 shipwrecks, including: warship HMS London blown up in 1665, yacht HMS Aisha that become part of "Dad`s Navy" as a gunboat, and a mystery wreck that went down about 1862. The wrecks, in the Thames Estuary, are just some of about 1,100 ships which went down in the whole of the river. The salvage by Wessex Archaeology and the Port of London Authority was both historical and practical. Jagged metal from the wrecks can act as a "can-opener," splitting apart vessels. The 4-month project was filmed for the BBC, using a dozen divers who used 3D survey gear to locate the wrecks in near-zero visibility.
Surveying Nazi U-boats sunk off North Carolina during World War II
NOAA will lead a research expedition to probe the wrecks of 3 German subs sunk by U.S. forces in 1942 off the coast of North Carolina. The team will survey and photograph visible sections of U-352, U-85 and U-701 using non-invasive methods as the submarine wreck sites are war graves. The German U-boats are located in an area known as the "Graveyard of the Atlantic," which has shipwrecks from both sides of the Battle of the Atlantic at recreational diving depths (less than 130 feet). The wrecks are popular dive sites, but unfortunately U-352 and U-85 have been damaged by salvage operators and relic hunters.
World War II naval legend, cruiser HMS Exeter, found off Java
The cruiser HMS Exeter, known for its role in the Battle of the River Plate when it tracked down the Admiral Graf Spee, was located by divers exploring the Java Sea. The British vessel was sunk on March 1, 1942, when, with 2 escorts, the destroyer HMS Encounter and the American destroyer Pope, it was attacked by 9 Japanese warships. All 3 Allied ships were lost in the action. The wreck of Encounter has also now been located. The two warships were found in Indonesian waters, at a depth of 200ft, 90 miles north of Bawean Island, and 60 miles from the sinking position reported by Exeter`s captain Oliver Gordon.
Divers get their fix with sunken ships - Wreck Diving
From oil rigs to half-frozen lakes, if it`s divable, chances are that Bill Wilson has strapped a tank on and poked around. He`s tallied over 4,000 dives, a couple of which were with Jacques Cousteau. As founder of California Wreck Divers, his mission is to discover and salvage artifacts because, "if we leave them down there, they will disappear." To Wilson, leaving these sunken treasures to decline in the saltwater would be a crime to nautical history. And with strong Pacific currents and heavy wave action, stuff doesn`t last as long here as it would in the Caribbean.
5 sunken warships, submerged beneath the sea [photos]
As technology has advanced, we now have ghostly images of destroyed men-of-war. (4) The German WWII Battleship Bismarck was a terror on the high seas in the early part of WWII, sinking the HMS Hood and damaging the Prince of Wales. She was crippled by an aerial torpedo, and destroyed by a Royal Navy task force in May 1941. --- (2) In the last days of World War II, American Carrier Air Power was operating with impunity and U.S. wanted a Japanese Pearl Harbor. The place they chose was Truk, an island fortress with a major fleet. The photo is of a battle tank on the deck of a transport ship, over 60 years later.
First pictures of the wreck of HMAS Sydney
The first pictures of a long lost shipwreck which sank during the Second World War killing 645 crew have released. Photos of HMAS Sydney were being taken by a remotely operated submersible deployed from the survey vessel Geosounder. Images show a gun turret on the Sydney with a shell hole clearly visible between the two guns.
Warship HMAS Sydney found - Australia`s maritime mystery solved
One wartime mystery has been solved with the discovery of the wreck of the battleship HMAS Sydney. The Sydney, a cruiser, was the biggest ship from any country to be sunk with all hands lost during World War Two. It was sunk by the German naval raider Kormoran, cloaked as a Dutch merchant ship, during a battle in Nov. 1941. The fate of HMAS Sydney, and why none of its crew survived, was "Australia`s major maritime mystery" said the chief of the Australian navy, Vice Admiral Russ Shalders. HMAS Sydney was last seen limping over the horizon, streaming black smoke, by the crew of the Kormoran.
Wreck of German World War II merchant raider Kormoran discovered
The wreckage of a German ship thought to have sunk the HMAS Sydney during World War II has been found off the Western Australian coast, increasing hopes that a wartime mystery will soon be solved. The German merchant raider Kormoran was discovered 150km west of Shark Bay - an important clue to concluding the search for the cruiser HMAS Sydney, which went down in November 1941 with the loss of all 645 on board after a furious battle. The HMAS Sydney was sunk in battle with the Kormoran while sailing to Australia from Sumatra but the location of the wreck was unknown.
The wreck of a Royal Navy destroyer HMS Hunter found in fjord in Norway
The wreck of a Royal Navy destroyer has been discovered in a Norwegian fjord, 68 years after she sank during the Battle of Narvik. HMS Hunter has stayed untroubled since April 1940 when she sank, killing 110 people. It was detected 305m under water by Norwegian mine control vessel Hnoms Tyr on a training mission. The site will be marked as a war grave. Major General Garry Robison said discovering HMS Hunter had been a "poignant moment". HMS Hunter was one of 2 Allied destroyers lost during the first Battle of Narvik, the Germans lost 4 destroyers.
Siblings travel to dive to the wreckage of the naval cruiser U.S.S. Houston
Jerry Ranger and Jolene Ranger-Stewart will travel to the Indonesia to dive to the wreckage of the U.S.S. Houston, a WWII naval cruiser sunk during the Sundra Strait Battle on March 1, 1942. The ship battled against a major Imperial Japanese Navy unit that bombed Pearl Harbor. The trip will be bittersweet because their dad, John W. Ranger, was a survivor of the battle. "I’ve learned about what he would never talk about. He spent 3-and-a-half years in 13 different POW camps. He also received a silver star for his bravery." No divers are allowed in the ship, but Jerry has been given permission to send in a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) to photograph the interior.
Auctioned: Model of ship that did not sink after torpedoed by German U-boat 111
A model of one of the shortest-lived ships in Whitby`s marine history may get £7,000 when it is auctioned. The 4 feet 5 inches long model is of the ill-starred steam ship Barnby, launched in 1940 - only to be torpedoed 18 months later by German U-boat 111 on May 22,1942, in one of the most unusual nautical incidents of the World War 2. This was because the Barnby did NOT sink! She was complately filled with flour, which swelled up and kept her afloat, so no one quite knows where she lies. "Builder`s models of this period are particularly sought-after... Early models have fine metal fittings, often silver or silver gilt and gunmetal or brass."
Adolf Hitler`s lost fleet found in Black Sea: Three German U-boats
The location of 3 German U-boats (U-19, U-20, U-23), "Hitler`s lost fleet", has been discovered at the bottom of the Black Sea. The vessels, including one once commanded by U-boat ace Otto Kretschmer, formed part of the 30th Flotilla of 6 submarines, taken by road and river from Nazi Germany`s Baltic port at Kiel to Constanta, the Romanian Black Sea port, to attack Russian shipping. In 2 years the fleet sank dozens of ships and lost 3 own u-boats. But in August 1944, Romania switched sides, leaving the 3 last vessels stranded. Mike Williams: "...these U-boats were all scuttled, so they should be intact, like a sealed tube. They are unique survivors of the war."
Wreckage of scuttled Nazi ship Ussukuma identified off Argentine coast
Argentina`s navy identified a wreck off the coast of Buenos Aires as the Ussukuma, a Nazi supply vessel that sank after a face-off with British warships in the early days of WWII. The Ussukuma, scuttled by its crew in Dec 1939, was carrying explosives for German warships, said historian Carlos De Napoli. "This is the first Nazi wreck to be id`d in Argentine waters in decades. We have at least 6 more Nazi ship and submarine wrecks waiting to be discovered." -- Professor of naval history Eric Grove: "Any German ship at sea after Sept 1939 could only operate as a fugitive. Standard procedure for those ships was to scuttle themselves if detected by enemy forces..."
Japanese Submarine I-52 had 2 tons of gold and other valuable cargo (Article no longer available from the original source)
"Battleground Atlantic: How the Sinking of a Single Japanese Submarine Assured the Outcome of World War II" by Richard Billings tells the story of the I-52, and the salvage efforts by Paul Tidwell. The I-52 carried with it the hopes of bringing victory to Japan. The cargo (gold and liquid opium) was to be used as payment for Nazi engineering that would help bring the Japanese submarine fleet up-to-date, and to bring back to Japan technology for a superweapon - thought to have been a radiological bomb. Billings cites decoded inventories that show uranium oxide aboard the I-52 to back up his argument that Japan was close to launching such a bomb against American targets.
Approval for German World War II U-boat U534 to resurface
Wirral council has approved Merseytravel`s proposal to house a German World War II submarine U-534, previously an attraction at the Historic Warships Museum at Seacombe docks, at the Woodside Ferry Terminal. The u-boat was sunk during the war when, she was attacked by an RAF Liberator aircraft in 1945. 49 of the 52 crew members survived - 5 who escaped via a torpedo hatch as the submarine lay on the sea bed. Plans include the provision of a visitor exhibition centre, which will display some of the four-and-a-half tons of memorabilia that was found on U-534: an Enigma cipher machine, ammunition, uniforms, tools, charts and maps.
An exploratory dive to assess the chances of recovering U-778
An exploratory dive to assess the chances of recovering a sunken U-boat is to take place. U-778, which did not see any war action, sank while being towed to Londonderry to be scrapped. Derry City Council plans to raise the Nazi submarine which lies 16 miles north west of Malin Head. The aim is to house the boat in a museum where people can get a glimpse of one of the iconic WWII vessels. There are about 150 of them lying off Malin Head - all vivid reminders of the Battle of the Atlantic during World War II. Even in the murky depths the outline of the U-boat is quite clear - divers saying the aerials and periscopes are still intact.
HMAS Sydney claim raises treasure hunt and relic hunters fears
There is concern international privateers and relic hunters will seek to profit from what is believed to be the wreck of the warship HMAS Sydney. A group of amateur researchers claim to have found the wreck off the coast of Western Australia, near Carnarvon. The Sydney was sunk off the WA coast during World War II, killing the entire crew of 645. "We`ve seen an appalling list of cases in the past 50 years where the finders of important shipwrecks have been treated badly and I don`t think we have to have that repeated," said Philip Pendal.
Soviet sub SC305 found - Sank after being rammed by Finnish sub
A research team has discovered a Soviet submarine SC305 at the bottom of the Baltic Sea. It was sunk in 1942 by the Finnish navy during a World War II battle. Bjorn Rosenlof says the 8-member team, using sonar equipment, found the vessel at a depth of 136 metres between the Swedish east coast town of Grisslehamn and the Finnish Aland Islands. The sub is "in very good condition, aside from a hole in the hull where it was hit." All 38 crew members died when the submarine sank after being rammed and hit by cannon fire from a Finnish submarine. The military has been informed of the discovery, but it`s unclear whether the submarine will be raised from the seabed.
U-864`s mercury cargo posing growing threat
The fate of a Nazi U-boat that was torpedoed off the Norwegian coast hangs in the balance a debate what to do about a growing environmental threat. Japanese Tadao Yamato and Toshio Nakai were among the passengers on the U-864 en route from Nazi Germany to Japan with a toxic cargo of 1,857 flasks of mercury when the Royal Navy submarine Venturer torpedoed it on Feb. 9, 1945. When the U-boat went down, some of its mercury cargo leaked contaminating 30,000 sq. meters. The U-864 contained plans and parts various Messerschmitt aircraft, submarines and radar. Adolf Hitler hoped that boosting Japan would put greater pressure on the US and weaken Britain.
U-boats off the North-East - Submarine Wrecks of the UK (Article no longer available from the original source)
Covering the entire East Coast this meticulously-researched account has separate chapters for the North-East and Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. The authors have pieced together the stories of the 16 U-boat wrecks so far located - 7 off the North-East coast, 9 off Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. They provide full technical details of the vessels, describe the events leading up to their loss, and list the victims, including, where available, those on ships attacked by the U-boats prior to their own destruction. The present state of the wreck, established by divers, completes the remarkable record.
An elite group of divers has found an important WW2 wreck
Samir Alhafith, Michael Kalman, Mark Eaves and Tony Keen were descending onto a giant freighter no person had seen since February 8, 1943. On that terrible day, the Iron Knight was sunk by a Japanese submarine. The ship was one of 16 vessels destroyed by Japanese submarines off the NSW coast during World War II. Only 3 of these have been found. Iron Knight was the victim of one of the most infamous Japanese subs - the massive I-21, which also launched a float plane over Sydney during the midget submarine attack in 1942 and shelled Newcastle. The four men belong to the Sydney Project, which is dedicated to finding shipwrecks in deep water.