Oscarsborg had fulfilled its mission and denied an invader access to the capital. It marked the end of the "Phoney War" and the beginning of World War II in Western Europe. He was well aware that Norway was officially neutral, but that the government was inclined to side with the British in case of direct Norwegian involvement in the war. [24] In all, thirteen 15 cm rounds and around thirty 57 mm shells hit the German cruiser as it passed the guns of the fortress' secondary batteries. [25][26][27] Only at this point did it become clear to the men of the fortress whom they were fighting. The reality, however, was that the burning ship was the 107 long tons (109 t) Norwegian cargo cutter Sørland that had stumbled into the battle while on her way from Moss to Oslo with a cargo of paper. In light of the fall of the capital, and with news of German landings at the village of Son south of Drøbak,[46] Colonel Eriksen decided that further fighting without adequate infantry support was in vain, and agreed to a ceasefire in the evening of 9 April. [47], Although the German naval attack on Oslo had been thwarted by the actions of Oscarsborg, the city was seized later that day by forces that were airlifted into Fornebu Airport. The map created by people like you! But things would not go fully as planned... As a result of the Blücher sinking, Oslo was not captured for several hours after the planned invasion of the capital, allowing the Norwegian royal family, parliament and cabinet to escape. But she, like many other ships in history, was created and born in an era where she was vunerable to … The wreck counts as a war-grave, hundreds of sailors and soldiers died on it. The occupation forces would then take care of the rest. [22] The second 28 cm round hit the base of the forward 20.3 cm (8.0 in) gun turret shortly thereafter, throwing large parts of it into the fjord and igniting further fires on board. She was the only ship of her class and was the first large warship built in Germany after the end of World War I.She was built at the Reichsmarinewerft in Wilhelmshaven; her keel was laid down in December 1921 and her completed hull was launched in January 1925. She was ordered in 1910 and commissioned in May 1913, the fourth battlecruiser built for the High Seas Fleet.She was named after Friedrich Wilhelm von Seydlitz, a Prussian general during the reign of King Frederick the Great and the Seven Years' War. Yourwhislist E-Commerce, S.L. In one famous incident the German battle cruiser Blücher … Sten Stockmann - www.advanceddivermagazine.com | Snekker Anders (Youtube) | Esben Johannsen (Youtube) | Wouter Groenewegen (Youtube) - Northsea Explorers (Vimeo) - Stig Fredrik Johansson (Vimeo) - Stig Fredrik Johansson (Vimeo). [19] Only one gun crew of actual artillerymen was available, and two guns could only be made operational by splitting the real gunners between the two guns and using non-combatant privates to assist the gunners. The hilariously parodical scenes which follow include the monsters encounter with a lonely, blind hermit (Gene Hackman) who befriends him, spill… Her keel was laid on 15 August 1936, under construction number 246. In one of the more peculiar battles of the war, a hundred year old fortification, manned by raw recruits and pensioners and armed with 40- to 50-year-old weaponry of German and Austro-Hungarian manufacture, had destroyed a ship so new, its crew was still finishing training. As the political situation was chaotic, the 64-year-old commander, Oberst (Colonel) Birger Eriksen, had not received any clear orders and had received no notice as to whether the approaching warships were German or Allied. The first 28 cm shell hit Blücher right in front of the aft mast,[19] and set the midship area up to the fore mast on fire. The heavy traffic in the straight is another danger. Tamelander, Michael & Zetterling, Niklas: "Besøket på Oscarsborg festning lørdag 2 september", Oscarsborg Fortress Museum official website, Oscarsborg Museum – history of the fortress, Norwegian Armed Forces website page about the fortress, 50 year anniversary Aftenposten newspaper article on the invasion of Norway, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Battle_of_Drøbak_Sound&oldid=998625963, Battles and operations of World War II involving Norway, Battles of World War II involving Germany, Articles with Norwegian-language sources (no), Articles with dead external links from June 2019, Articles with permanently dead external links, Articles with German-language sources (de), Articles containing Norwegian-language text, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 6 January 2021, at 07:51. The remaining ships turned around and landed the German invasion forces out of range of Oscarsborg. VHF-radio and a skilled and experienced surface-crew is a must. SMS Seydlitz was a battlecruiser of the German Kaiserliche Marine (Imperial Navy), built in Hamburg. After passing the line of fire of the fortress' gun batteries, the cruiser was burning and severely damaged, but her captain still hoped he would be able to save his ship. Blücher's fire-fighting system was also knocked out by shell fragments from the two Norwegian batteries, making attempts to control the fires aboard the ship and rescue the many wounded much more difficult. Estimated Wreckposition of German Heavy Cruiser Blücher. However, unbeknownst to German military intelligence, the fortress' most powerful weapon was a torpedo battery, which would be used to great effect against the German invaders.[14]. It marked the end of the "Phoney War" and the beginning of World War II in Western Europe. As the force made good its escape, the fortress managed to damage Lützow, the 15 cm guns of the Kopås battery scoring three hits and knocking out the ship's forward 28 cm turret ("Anton"). The reason for the significant effect of the two 28 cm rounds on Blücher was that the first round penetrated the side of the ship and exploded inside a magazine containing cans of oil, smoke dispensers, incendiary bombs, aircraft bombs for the cruiser's Arado Ar 196 reconnaissance floatplanes and depth charges. The flawless waterline hull has extensive superstructure detail cast in situ, as well as anchors, chains, and rolled-up torpedo nets. [1], One of the two 40 mm guns became unserviceable after only 22 rounds; the other gun kept firing until 12:00, but to little effect. The British managed to intercept German telegrams and send a fleet of 5 battlecruisers. Blücher was the second of five Admiral Hipper -class heavy cruisers of Nazi Germany 's Kriegsmarine, built after the rise of the Nazi Party and the repudiation of the Treaty of Versailles. [1][11][12] Brummer was indeed lost in connection with the invasion, but only when she was on her way back to Germany on 14 April, when she was torpedoed by the Royal Navy submarine HMS Sterlet and sank the next day. 14.08.2014 - German cruiser Blücher in the Oslo fjord, April 9, 1940 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Stay safe and healthy. At 04:21 on 9 April, Eriksen gave the Main Battery guns the order to fire at the lead ship of the unknown flotilla forcing its way towards Oslo. [40][41] Many of the German wounded were initially taken to Åsgården summer hotel in Åsgårdstrand for medical care, where Norwegian wounded had already been brought. [27] The message had been sent to the naval base in Horten at 04:10, but the massive communications problems that severely hampered the efforts of the Norwegian military throughout the Norwegian Campaign had prevented it from reaching Oscarsborg in time. Engelbrecht and Kummetz then made their way to Oslo. [1,621 × 1,137] Emden was a light cruiser built for the German Reichsmarine in the early 1920s. [23] The aim was corrected for the second torpedo launch and the torpedo struck Blücher amidships, hitting the same general area as the first 28 cm shell. Colonel Eriksen, Commander of the Oscarsborg fortress near Drøbak, mainly maintained for historical purposes, sank the German heavy cruiser Blücher in the Drøbak narrows. [25] As Kommandørkaptein Anderssen pushed the firing mechanism button for the torpedoes, at approximately 04:30, the weapons turned out to work perfectly; first one and then another torpedo raced out of their underwater exit tunnels at 3 m (9.8 ft) below the surface toward the burning warship. The oil rapidly caught fire, killing hundreds more Germans. After a break in the attacks from 12:00 to 13:30, during which time Lützow bombarded Hovedøya,[1] the Luftwaffe bombers returned at 13:30 and soon strafed the remaining Norwegian anti-aircraft guns, forcing the crew to seek shelter in the nearby forest at around 14:00. Due to this, the retired Kommandørkaptein (Commander Senior Grade) Andreas Anderssen, who lived in nearby Drøbak, had been assigned as temporary commander for the battery. Wreck of WW2 Italian destroyer found under the Mediterranean Sea waters, Awesome Drone Footage: P-40 fighter aircraft lifted from the bottom of Kerch Strait - It Was Part of Lend-Lease Agreement, Yes! Sinking of the German Kreuzer “Blücher” 14-02-2019 The Blücher was the second of five Admiral Hipper-class heavy cruisers of Nazi Germany’s Kriegsmarine, built after the rise of the Nazi Party and the repudiation of the Treaty of Versailles. [15] Anderssen would show himself worthy of the important task of leading the fortress' most lethal weapon system; having first served at the torpedo battery in 1909, he knew the ageing weapons intimately. [23] This caused catastrophic damage to the cruiser and blew open many of her bulkheads, allowing water to flood her decks while she was burning furiously. The soldiers and non-commissioned officers captured at the mainland batteries were released three days after the fortress' surrender, while the officers were held as prisoners of war at Fredriksten Fortress. The fleet was engaged in the fjord by Oscarsborg Fortress, an ageing coastal installation near Drøbak, that had been relegated to training coastal artillery servicemen, leading the Germans to disregard its defensive value. [9] The third torpedo launcher was left loaded in case more ships were to follow close behind Blücher. The wreck was originally discovered by sonar by Statnett, a power company inspecting under water lines, back in 2017. Emden was commissioned into the fleet in October 1925. She was hit by shells from 15km distance and capsized near Doggersbank. The hotel was the temporary improvised location for the Royal Norwegian Navy Hospital, which had been evacuated from Horten at midnight on 8 April. [23] There was only time for the Main Battery to fire these two rounds, due to their slow reload time with only 30 untrained recruits manning them at the time. Kummetz flew his flag in Blücher. Thus, the Norwegian government was able to continue the defence of Norway until it had evacuated to exile in the United Kingdom on 7 June, with the Norwegian Army laying down their arms on 10 June. Review of the 1/350 kit of the German Navy's Cruiser Blücher by Trumpeter. [9] After the ship had disappeared from the surface, large quantities of oil floated up and covered the close to two thousand sailors and soldiers fighting for their lives in the freezing water. According to the report, a major concern is a typhoon damaging the wreck and facilitating a … When the guns on both sides silenced, with all the "passengers" still under deck—"there was a dead silence on board the whole ship, no movement whatsoever was identified".[32]. She was built as a response to what German intelligence at the time believed were the specifications of... SMS Blücher was the last armored cruiser of the German Kaiserliche Marine. The German heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen was one of the German Navy’s largest ships. [7] In total, some 1,200 of the survivors had made it ashore at Frogn near Drøbak. 9th of April 1940. The only thing they did over the years was to remove the anchors (they are at a museum) and the ship's bell (brought it to a german naval museum). As the small ship had mistaken the events as a military exercise, she kept going until fired upon and set ablaze by the German minesweepers R-18 and R-19. None of the prisoners were interrogated. The ship was intended for long-range overseas service, so the designers placed emphasis on a large cruising radius and capaciou… The commander of the torpedo battery at Oscarsborg had at the time of the battle been on sick leave since March 1940. By this point, Blücher was doomed. The WSW 1:700th SMS Blucher is typical of the high quality we’ve come to expect from this German producer. Because of the influx of 450 fresh recruits, the fortress' naval mines were not deployed on 9 April. The Battle of Drøbak Sound took place in Drøbak Sound, the northernmost part of the outer Oslofjord in southern Norway, on 9 April 1940. The bulkheads on that deck were blown out and the burning oil developed into an intense fire. The battle is depicted in the 2016 feature film The King's Choice. [42], By the time Blücher sank, the remaining naval force destined for Oslo had long since turned around and retreated back down the fjord. [21] The personnel pressed into service on the main guns included cooks woken up to man the Main Battery. The Blucher lies in 92m depth in the Oslo-fjord and is due to prevailing conditions a very demanding dive. The fjord was the scene of a key event in the German invasion of Norway in 1940. Dreaded V1 Flying Bomb Flyes Again! [23], While fire raged aboard Blücher, the secondary Norwegian coastal batteries fired at her with guns ranging in calibre from the two small 57 mm (2.24 in) pieces at Husvik, intended to protect the fortress' missing mine barrier, to the three 15 cm (5.9 in) guns of the Kopås Battery on the eastern side of the fjord. With all engines knocked out by the second torpedo hit, the cruiser anchored near the Askholmene islets just north and out of the arc of fire of the fort's guns to try to fight the ferocious fires raging throughout the vessel. The Blücher was the last and arguably the best German armoured cruiser, armed like the new Nassau dreadnoughts. The reserve officers were released on 15 May, while the full-time officers were transferred to Grini prison camp and released in late May 1940.[48]. Apart from the officers and NCOs, almost all the soldiers manning the fortress were fresh recruits, having only been conscripted seven days before, on 2 April. German transport planes flying through Oslofjord; The Norwegian victory was short lived as, unbeknown to Eriksen, the Blücher was only the first step in the invasion. And they pumped the remaining fuel out for saving the marine-enviroment reasons. The Husvik battery had to be abandoned when Blücher passed in front of it and fired her light AA guns directly down into the positions. [2] The ship was intended for long-range overseas service, so the designers placed emphasis on a large cruising radius and capaciou… The occupation forces would then take care of the rest. According to Article 181 of the Treaty of Versailles, the treaty that ended World War I, the German Navy was permitted only six light cruisers. [49] On 9 April, the Storting was able to convene at Elverum and give the cabinet a wide authorization to govern until a Storting could again assemble. The kit depicts Blucher subsequent to the fitting of a tripod foremast in 1913, the first German warship to be so fitted. Don't Miss. Norwegian shore batteries sink the Blucher From a range of approximately 1800 metres the two 11inch (28cm) shells from the Krupps guns that were capable of firing caused massive damage to the Blucher. The heavy cruiser Blücher would sail into the Oslo harbor, turn its cannons against the royal palace, and Norway would surrender. [27] After pulling out of range of the fortress guns, Lützow employed her remaining turret "Bruno" to bombard the defenders from a range of 9–10 km (4.9–5.4 nmi; 5.6–6.2 mi) down the fjord. The Blücher was a German Admiral Hipper-class heavy cruiser. [16] When Anderssen had been called back into duty a month previously, he had been a pensioner for 13 years, having originally retired from his post as commander of the torpedo battery in 1927. [19] There was no time to reload; there was not even time to fire the third gun, Josva, which was loaded but unmanned. A German fleet led by the cruiser Blücher was dispatched up the Oslofjord to begin the German invasion of Norway, with the objective of seizing the Norwegian capital of Oslo and capturing King Haakon VII and his government. Lützow was assigned to Group 5, alongside the new heavy cruiser Blücher and the light cruiser Emden under the command of Konteradmiral Oskar Kummetz. In all, the fortress was subjected to nearly nine hours of air attack, during which time around five hundred bombs—ranging from 50–200 kg (110–440 lb) in size—were dropped on Oscarsborg. "[20] Two rounds from the 28 cm (11.0 in) Krupp guns Moses and Aron engaged the German cruiser Blücher at 1,800 m (2,000 yd) range. As built, the ship had a straight stem, though after her launch this was replaced with a clipper bow increasing the overall length to 205.9 meters (676 ft).A raked funnel cap was also installed. In addition to the depth the vessel is turned upside-down, and strong tides make diving possible only at specific times. The Kriegsmarine's newest ship at the outbreak of World War II, having been in commission for just over six months, she was sunk by Norwegian shore defences at the Battle of Drøbak Sound on April 9, 1940, the first day of the invasion of Norway (Operation Weserübung). [25][26][28][29][30] Later, at 04:35, Oberst Eriksen received a message from the Norwegian minesweeper HNoMS Otra confirming that the intruding ships were German. As Anderssen had overestimated the speed of his target slightly, the first torpedo hit near Blücher's forward turret (nicknamed "Anton"), creating only inconsequential damage. Kommandørkaptein Anderssen donned his old uniform and was transported by boat over the fjord to the torpedo battery. The shelling lasted only for five to seven minutes. All rights reserved. U-637 U-boat Wreck Discovery by Famous Shipwrecks Hunter, Amazing discovery! The fortress' armaments worked flawlessly despite their age, sinking the Blücher in the sound and forcing the German fleet to fall back. The Falklands Maritime Heritage Trust is pleased to announce that the wreck of SMS Scharnhorst has been located off the Falkland Islands. [33] The retired torpedoes the officer was aiming at the cruiser were 40-year-old Whitehead torpedo weapons of Austro-Hungarian manufacture. The occupation forces would then take care of the rest. After firing, the two other tubes were reloaded and readied for the next target. Petersson. He responded with his now famous response; "Either I will be decorated or I will be court martialled, Fire! [48], The garrison at the main battery and at Håøya were treated separately by the Germans from those captured from the mainland batteries, and were released a week after the battle. [16] Colonel Eriksen later explained his decision by alluding to the fact that the German naval force already had forced their way past the Oslofjord Fortress' forts and had received both warning shots and live rounds from these more outlying coastal fortifications. German cruiser Blücher sinking in the Oslofjord, originally spearheading the capture of the Norwegian capital and Royal Family. For some time after the battle, the belief was that Oscarsborg had sunk the artillery training ship Brummer. The whole of Oslo’s sea-traffic goes through, both freight ships and passenger ship to England. Hitler’s plan for conquering Norway was simple. [24] Although the main building at the battery caught fire, the Norwegians suffered no casualties. Sørland sank with two of her six-man crew near the village of Skiphelle in Drøbak, as the first civilian Norwegian ship lost during the invasion. [34][35][36] The magazine blast ruptured the bulkheads between the boiler rooms and tore open the cruiser's fuel bunkers, igniting further fires. [50], Coordinates: .mw-parser-output .geo-default,.mw-parser-output .geo-dms,.mw-parser-output .geo-dec{display:inline}.mw-parser-output .geo-nondefault,.mw-parser-output .geo-multi-punct{display:none}.mw-parser-output .longitude,.mw-parser-output .latitude{white-space:nowrap}59°42′03″N 10°35′34″E / 59.7009°N 10.5927°E / 59.7009; 10.5927, Battle of World War II in the Norwegian Campaign. Admiral Hipper immediately ordered his ships homeward, but it was too late for Blücher, the slowest of the party. During the battle, another burning ship was spotted in the distance from Oscarsborg, leading the Norwegian defenders to believe they had sunk another German warship in addition to Blücher. The Kriegsmarine's newest ship at the outbreak of World War II, having been in commission for just over six months, she was sunk by Norwegian shore defences at the Battle of Drøbak Sound on April 9, 1940, the first day of the invasion of Norway (Operation Weserübung). [34] The crew's struggle ended when, at 05:30,[34] fires reached a midship ammunition hold for the 10.5 cm (4.13 in) Flak guns, blowing a large gap in the ship's side. Design work on the first new light cruiser, ordered as "Ersatz Niobe", began in 1921. Group 5 was tasked with capturing Oslo, the capital of Norway, and transported a force of … The heavy cruiser Blücher would sail into the Oslo harbor, turn its cannons against the royal palace, and Norway would surrender. By 18:30, the Norwegian soldiers withdrew from the area, abandoning the Germans. SMS Blücher (wreck) SMS Blücher (wreck) SMS Blücher was the last armored cruiser of the German Kaiserliche Marine. [46] Amongst the bombers that attacked Oscarsborg were twenty-two long-range Junkers Ju 87R "Stuka" dive bombers of Sturzkampfgeschwader 1 under the command of Hauptmann Paul-Werner Hozzel, operating from Kiel-Holtenau airport in northern Germany. Due to this the Blücher is only dived a few times a year. [31], The return fire from Blücher was ineffective, with the light artillery mostly pointing too high and the main batteries, 20.3 cm guns, unable to fire due to the damage caused by the second 28 cm round from Oscarsborg's Main Battery. [2], While the main combat station for the Main Battery and the commander of Oscarsborg fortress was on the island Håøya north-west of South Kaholmen, due to the special circumstances in 1940, Oberst Eriksen took position in the backup station on the eastern flank of the main battery at South Kaholmen.[18]. In addition Norway’s gold reserves were moved out of reach of the invaders and ultimately shipped to the Allies for Norway’s use during the war. German Heavy Cruiser Blücher Wreckage Site and Diving (five videos) Hitler’s plan for conquering Norway was simple. The ship was launched on 8 June 1937, and was completed slightly over two years later, on 20 September 1939, the day she was commissioned into the German fleet. ("That cannot shake a sailor"). Article 190 limited new cruiser designs to 6,000 long tons (6,100 t) and prohibited new construction until the vessel to be replaced was at least twenty years old. Copyright © 2014. On 9th April 1940, the fort was attacked by the Kriegsmarine and sank the German cruiser "Blücher". Article 190 limited new cruiser designs to 6,000 long tons (6,100 t) and prohibited new construction until the vessel to be replaced was at least twenty years old. Even though it and the country were ultimately captured and occupied, the effects of delaying the German advance were immediate and considerable. During this retreat, the fortress managed to damage the heavy cruiser "Lützow". The fortress was surrendered intact on the morning of 10 April. The invasion included a planned landing of 1,000 troops transported by ship to Oslo. The German Kriegsmarine, Blücher Operational History, Heavy Cruiser, Blücher, Schwerer Kreuzer 1939-1940, Admiral Hipper class [24], As the now crippled Blücher passed the fortress guns, a sudden outburst of voices from the burning cruiser could be heard above the battle noises; Norwegian sources state that the crew broke into singing Deutschland, Deutschland über alles. WW2live is a division of Yourwhislist E-commerce, S.L. The heavy cruiser Blücher would sail into the Oslo harbor, turn its cannons against the royal palace, and Norway would surrender. Initially, four machine guns on the roof of the Main Battery also returned fire, but these had to be abandoned early on. Text and photography by Sten Stockmann Hitler’s plan for conquering Norway was simple. Mar 4, 2017 - German heavy cruiser "Blücher", in Oslo Fjord, Norway, on April 9th, 1940, early in the morning Blucher as an armoured cruiser was very good, with excellent main guns, healthy secondaries, good armouring as well as compartmenting and a very good speed. At this point, however, Blücher entered the sights of Kommandørkaptein Anderssen as she slid past the torpedo battery at a range of only 500 m (550 yd). The fortress's resistance blocked the route to … Previously dived by Norwegian, Swedish and Danish teams, we had the honor of being the first Finns on the wreck... (read more at: www.advanceddivermagazine.com). Please practice hand-washing and social distancing, and check out our resources for adapting to these times. [7], Obergefreiter Günther Morgalla—who survived the sinking—later said that, swimming toward his shivering crew mates onshore, he heard someone defiantly singing the Deutschlandlied followed by "Das kann doch einen Seemann nicht erschüttern." 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