U-Boat History Books

U-Boat History Books – THE U-BOAT

ARCHIVE SERIES edited by Jak P. Mallmann Showell

U-Boat History Books


Volumes 1 – 4 THE MONTHLY ANTI-SUBMARINE REPORTS The Monthly Anti-Submarine Reports, circulated secretly to officers in the Royal Navy’s escort forces throughout the war, were a major weapon in the all important distribution of information for the Battle of the Atlantic. Sadly, most of these reports have vanished into obscurity, leaving hardly a trace of the original authors. Producing these magazine style sheets was no mean feat, even if the production team did have access to classified information. Most of their German statistical details were surprisingly good and they were exceedingly quick off the mark to report new introductions from both sides with astonishing accuracy. Of special interest are the numerous small inconsistencies in the narratives. These days one cannot be sure whether these were injected on purpose to aid propaganda, whether they were untruths swallowed from the interrogation of prisoners or whether they were genuine mistakes. However, the numerous neat little jabs of carefully placed propaganda, belittling the other side, must have had a significant influence on the officers who were allowed to read these highly classified pages. It must be borne in mind that all of this material was produced during the war under a strict code of secrecy and much of it was plucked from “unreliable” sources. Therefore not necessarily everything within these pages is true. One of the most astonishing points about the Monthly Anti-Submarine Reports is that they have hardly ever been listed by major historians as a research source. The reason for this could well be that the Reports have remained firmly classified and it is likely that the majority were re-called for destruction rather than being left in libraries. However, the Monthly Anti-Submarine Reports were and still are one of the major primary resources for anyone studying U-boats and the Battle of the Atlantic.

Volume 1 : WHAT BRITAIN KNEW AND WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT U-BOATS: In this volume we have reproduced one complete month – April 1943 – more or less in its entirety to give some impression about the contents of the Reports. April 1943 was chosen because that was the first time that a convoy succeeded in crossing the Atlantic while throwing off every attacking U-boat and this has been well documented, especially by the escort commander Vice-Admiral Sir Peter Gretton in his classic book Crisis Convoy. The original was printed on foolscap, marginally larger than A4, which has created some difficulties with the layout. The other problem is that the original contained a vast number of large maps and pull-out illustrations, many of which are too expensive to reproduce, although the quality is generally excellent and the content matter more than interesting. As far as possible, we have tried to preserve not only the information in the original, but also its rather unique flavour and its distinct characteristics. The section dealing with April 1943 has been kept, as far as possible, with its original punctuation and with the older form of spelling, but many of the following pages have been slightly modified to make it easier for readers who do not have English as their first language. Some of the original records do not identify U-boats and additional details have been added to complete the picture. Apart from the April 1943 Report the following extracts from other Monthly Reports are included in this volume: Contents:- U-boats lost around April 1943, September 2001; Form for Reporting Submarine Attacks on Convoys, July 1939; Secret Standing War Orders for German U-boats, June 1940; Reloading Torpedoes, March 1941; Details of U651, August 1941; Information Obtained from Prisoners of War, August 941; What Happens in a U-boat, January 1941; Sighting Convoys, January 1941;Boarding a Disabled U-boat, January 1941;The Crew of U70, March 1941; Results of the Escape of German Prisoners of War; Information Obtained from Survivors from U131, U434 & U574; Near Misses by Ramming, January 1942;Questions put to Eight Royal Navy Submarine Commanders H.M. Submarine Graph (ex-U570), March 1942; Dönitz’s Headquarters, March 1942; Visit to the U-boat Harbour, March 1942; The Weather in the North Atlantic, January 1944; U-boat W/T Transmissions during Attacks on Convoys; Watchkeeping in U-boats, May 1942;A German Broadcast, May 1942;Admiral Dönitz’s Broadcast, July 1942;Information from Prisoners of War in HMS Duke of York; Information from Prisoners of War, December 1942; Young U-boat Crews in Contact with the Enemy;The Wisdom of Grand Admiral Dönitz, January 1944; The Gnat (Acoustic Homing) Torpedo, February 1944;Apparatus in the Wireless Cabinet, March 1941; Information about U-boats, October 1939; U-boat Radar, February 1944; Radar Decoy Spar-Buoy, February 1944; What a U-boat Ace Thinks of Hitler, April 1944; Trials with a Fast Submarine, December 1944; Handbook for German U-boat Captains, May 1944; The Last Cruise of U99, April 1941; The Sinking of U110, June 1941; Index. 108 pages, 210x290mm.
ISBN 978-0-85420-042-9 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-047-4 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 2 : WEAPONS USED AGAINST U-BOATS Contents:- Effect of the convoy system on the reduction of shipping; British counter measures; Protection of merchant shipping; Administration of convoys; Anti-submarine trawlers; Convoys Administration of convoys – some difficulties; Signaling; Station – keeping; Visibility in convoys; The effect of the convoy system; Defence of unconvoyed ships; Remarks on main convoys; Research, experimental and design work in progress since April 1940; Hydrophones Sonic versus asdic hydrophones;Present day use of hydrophones; Use of loudspeakers; Headphone reception of hydrophone effect; Training and practice; Whales; Progress at Fairlie (Anti-Submarine Experimental Establishment); Self defence in cruisers; Listening for hydrophone effect; Experimental facilities; Asdic sets in “Town” class destroyers; HM Anti-submarine school in Australia; RD/F (Radio Direction Finder – radar) as an anti-submarine device; Performance; Operational use; Training; Maintenance; Defects; Future development at Fairlie (Anti-Submarine Experimental Establishment); Revision of asdic operating procedure for surface craft; Iceland routing; A destroyer misses a magnificent opportunity; Accuracy of firing depth charge patterns; Remarks on anti-submarine weapons; The multi-spigot mortar (The Hedgehog); The use of the ram; Illuminants; “Nimrod” anti-submarine hunting game; RDF (Radio Direction Finder – radar) and asdic detection of U-boats; Counter attack competition; New asdic set; Hedgehog fitting programme; RDF (Radio Direction Finder – radar); Near misses by ramming; Practical experience of H/F D/F in HMS “Brocke” (High Frequency Direction Finder); M/F D/F bearings of shadowing U-boats from merchant ships in Convoy HX175; A visit to the Russian anti-submarine school at Polyarnoe; Night attack by a Wellington aircraft fitted with a searchlight; The Mousetrap projector; Development in depth charges; Further developments with the Mousetrap projector; Asdic set, Type 144; Aircraft depth bombs; An appreciation of the work of base anti-submarine; Maintenance staffs; Detection of mines by asdic; Minol-filled, Mark IV, depth charges; Hedgehog ammunition; Anti-submarine bombs; SUEs, (Signals, underwater exploring); Coastal Command activities; The Squid; Fitting asdics in merchant ships; Explosion of Hedgehog projectiles in HMS “Escapade”; Modern trends with anti-submarine attack instruments; The “standard” night escort training device; The “Shark” anti-submarine projectile Anti-submarine section of the naval forces of the Union of South Africa; Radio sono buoys; MAD (Magnetic Airborne Detector) and retro-bombs; Expansion of anti-submarine training; Illumination for night attacks on U-boats by aircraft; The British section of the US Navy sound school at Key West (Florida); Successful all-radar attack by a British submarine; Training in the use and maintenance of weapons and equipment; A practical anti-U-boat exercise in the Indian Ocean; Anti-Submarine training in New Zealand; Anti-submarine weapons in use by Fleet Air Arm and Coastal Command aircraft; Net Defence in moving merchant ships; Operational experience with sono buoys; Anti-submarine warfare – some general principles; United States Navy Killer Group instructions; Air escort of large, fast task forces; The radio war; H/F D/F (High Frequency Direction Finders); Radar and GSR; Centimetric radar; Appreciations, June and July 1943; The great radiation scare; “Naxos”; The effects on morale; Radar decoys; A new approach; Jammers and decoys; GSR; The problem of invisibility; U-boat radar; H/F security; “Y”; The chase of a submerged U-boat capable of 25 knots submerged; A brief survey of anti-submarine weapons used throughout the war. Index 100 pages, 210x290mm.
ISBN 978-0-85420-076-4 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-077-1 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 3 : THE BRITISH MONTHLY COUNTER MEASURES REVIEWS Throughout the war the British Anti-Submarine Warfare Division of the Naval Staff distributed the latest essential news for combating the U-boat threat as Monthly Reviews. These were so secret at the time that only officers engaged in anti-submarine duties were provided copies and the vast majority of the men fighting the war at sea did not even know these documents existed. Volume 3 of the U-boat Archive Series contains re-prints of these remarkable Counter Measures Reviews. The original text has been annotated with post-war information to provide a fascinating glimpse into a most important aspect of the U-boat war. Accounts include ASW Striking Forces; Instructions of Convoy Escort; commanders.; intercommunications between escort vessels; ASV in escort ships; Coastal Command operations; Convoy SC6; HX 112; the Newfoundland Escort Force; Depth Charges, attacks on U-Boats; Gibralter Convoys; “ace” u-boat commanders; aircraft in Western Approaches; Merchant aircraft carries; rescuing survivors from sinking U-Boats; “Curley” torpedoes; Escort Carriers; experiences on the Russian & Mediterranean; convoys. U-Boats in the South Atlantic; Support Groups; activities of Second Support Group; Toulon raid; the longest hunt on record; MAD near Gibralter; use of flares by Coastal Command; H/F D/F; the first “Squid” kill; the role of the Squid; D-Day operations &c &c Index. 210x290mm 134 pages.
ISBN 978-0-85420-091-7 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-301-7 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 4 : THE BRITISH MONTHLY U-BOAT OFFENSIVE REVIEWS A follow-on from volume 3, this book contains annotated reprints of the Monthly U-boat Offensive Reviews. Produced by the British Anti-Submarine Warfare Division of the Naval Staff, these accounts provided a clear insight into how Britain perceived the threat of the massive U-boat campaign. Once again the text has been annotated with post-war information to make it easier to identify individual actions Includes Sinking of the City of Banares with children on board; December 1940 situation; U-Boat tactics – day – night; occupation of the French bases; U-boat tactics, First cruise of U 35; Neutral shipping which could be attacked; Operation Paukenschlag – the attack against the United States; Four wheel Enigma machine introduced; Acoustic torpedoes; Far Eastern operations; Air Gap in Mid-Atlantic; Caribbean operations; Dramatic U-boat sinkings; PRU – Photo Reconnaissance Unit of the RAF; Review of the U-boat war; Heyday of the aces; Development of Coastal Command of RAF; Convoys attacked; Convoy routes; Types XXI and XXIII; Comparison of 1945 and 1943; Operations outside UK coastal waters towards the end of the war; Allied air offensive; Essential wartime statistics &c &c . Index 210 x290mm 95 pages.
ISBN 978-0-85420-036-8 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-282-9 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 5 : EXTRACTS FROM THE STRATEGIC BOMBING SURVEY OF THE GERMAN U–BOAT INDUSTRY Contents: Raw Materials, U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey of Bremen:- Deutsche Schiff und Maschinenbau AG (Deschimag AG Weser),The Plant and its function in enemy economy, Products of the Plant, Physical description of the plant, Ownership and management, Organisation, Employees, Attacks, Effects of Bombing, Physical damage, Effects of Bombing on cranes and docks, Effects of the Bombing on Submarines, Effects of Bombing on buildings and dockyard plant Damage created by the bombing campaign, Effects of bombing on machine tools, Effects of bombing on air alarms, Effects of bombing on production targets, Welding difficulties created by the bombing damage, Causes for loss of production, Effects of bombing on the recuperability cycle, Intelligence check, Data relevant to other studies, Evaluations and impressions. U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey of Concrete Submarine Bunkers, Submarine Pens (Fink II) at Deutsche Werft in Hamburg:- Object of study, Summary, General information, Description of target, Design and construction of the target, Summary of construction, Reinforcement, Walls, Foundations, Roof, Steel, Walls, Foundations, Description of the attack, Analysis of the damage, Recommendations and conclusions.  U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey of Hamburg : Blohm und Voss Shipyard:- The yard and its function in enemy economy, Products of the plant, Physical description of plant, Features of design and construction of buildings, Facilities, transportation, utilities, Ownership and management, Personnel interviewed and employees Blohm und Voss and submarine building, Prefabricated or section program of Type XXI, Attacks, Attack data, Effects of bombing, Damage to buildings, structures and utilities, Fire damage, Damage to machinery and equipment, Protection of machine tools, Weapon effectiveness, Production loss due to bombing, Type VIIC submarines, Type XXI submarines, Docks and other yard facilities, Diversion of productive workers, Shortages and bottlenecks, Recuperability, Vulnerability, Intelligence check, Evaluations and impressions. U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey of Kiel Krupp Germania Werft :- The plant and its function in enemy economy, Products of plant and physical description of plant, Facilities, transportation, utilities, Ownership and management, Personnel interviewed and employees, Development of Type VIIC submarine, Talent supplied to design new submarines, Submarine building record of Germania Werft, Germania Werft as laboratory for submarine development, Attacks, Effects of bombing, Damage to buildings and structures, Damage to utilities and machine tools, Protection of machinery and tools, Weapon effectiveness, Production loss due to bombing Type VIIC submarines, Type XXIII submarines, Midget submarines, Other types of submarines, Diversion of yard activities, Recuperability, Vulnerability, Intelligence check, Evaluations and impressions. Index 84 pages 210x290mm.
ISBN 978-0-85420-960-6 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-965-1 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 6:- FROM THE EARLY U-BOAT ARCHIVE JOURNALS Contents:- First Published in October 1998 : News from the Archive; U129’s second war cruise and the fate of the Submarine Supply Ship Kota Pinang; U192 Oblt.z.S. Werner Happe (Preparing for Action); Definition of Words; The naval author Jochen Brennecke (U34 and the sinking of HMS Whirlwind and Spearfish); U566’s successful fight against Allied aircraft; Flotillenadmiral Otto Kretschmer; A patrol of SM U22 in the eastern Baltic. First Published in April 1999: The circulation of a lie; In Memory of Otto Kretschmer; Report for 1998; Printing ships’ names; New Books; Extracts from old war diaries – U188 fending off an aircraft attack in the Bay of Biscay; The Austro-Hungarian U-boat Ace Rudolf Singule and SM U-IV1; Oblt.z.S. Wolfgang Leu – The U-boat commander who sacrificed himself to save his crew. First Published in November 1999 : U47 in Scapa Flow and the sinking of the battleship Royal Oak; Royal Navy. First Published in November 1999 : News; From old war diaries – The sinking of the Fanad Head by Fritz-Julius Lemp (U30); How did it work? – Alarm bells and the flashing light facility; Food on board U-boats; Knight’s Cross during the 13th Voyage – Kptlt. Claus Korth (U93); The fight for the Confined Space Supplement; The last Knight Supplement – Rudolf Singule; Operational Training with the Agru-Front; Basic principles for the relaying of orders; Seehund wreck discovered in the Baltic; Submarines on postage stamps; Man overboard; Practical experience and warning radio signals; New books. First Published May 2000 : Newsletter; U-boat-Archive report for the year 1999; The International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg; From old logbooks – The 7th voyage of U96 (Heinrich Lehmann-Willenbrock). First Published December 2000 : News and comments; Professor Hellmuth Walter; From old war diaries – The first U-boat group attack against a convoy; Operational trials during peacetime – U26’s voyage to Spain; Historic Warships at Birkenhead; Man overboard; Books. 210x290mm 116 pages.
ISBN 978-0-85420-950-7 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-955-2 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 7:- U-570 – H.M.S. GRAPH : THE TECHNICAL REPORT H.M.S. GRAPH, ex “U-570” was in August 1941, the first enemy submarine to surrender intact to the Allies. There were only two such occurrences during World War II. The Americans captured U-505 in June 1944, off the west coast of Africa. She never went to sea again and found a last resting place in front of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. U-570 on the other hand did go to sea again-under the White Ensign. The U-boat was a priceless asset in the business of war. In August 1941 the British Admiralty could not believe their luck when a report from a lone Hudson Aircraft radioed in that she had captured a U-boat. The report includes an account of the condition of the boat on its capture, and is critical of the German crew’s maintenance of the boat as well as their poor attempts to make the boat unseaworthy. This Technical Report was compiled for the Admiralty in January 1943 whilst H.M.S. GRAPH was in dry-dock undergoing a refit. It is a thorough examination of the boat and its equipment. The torpedoes, guns, the firing trials, and comments on German Navy practice as against British Navy practice &c. In addition there is a copy of the report on exercises carried out for the US Navy. It is a study on the performance of the boat, underwater endurance, diving and surfacing characteristics, the recharging of the batteries and air supply. The boat’s behaviour. Simulated exercises and exercise summaries. Included are a number of illustrations on “resilient mountings”, the periscope – its optical arrangement and diagrammatic arrangements, two fold-outs illustrating the docking plan & watertight compartments 115 pages, 210x 295mm.
ISBN 978-0-85420-940-8 Hardback Edition £29.99
ISBN 978-0-85420-945-3 Softback Edition £17.99

Volume 8 :-OPERATION CABAL : THE TRANSFER OF U-BOAT TO FROM THE UNITED KINGDOM TO RUSSIAN 1945-6 This study as originally researched and compiled from the Admiralty Records by Mr D J Lees of the Royal Navy’s Historical Branch, and edited by J P Mallmann Showell This study is based on contemporary reports. The Royal Navy’s vessels returned to the UK arriving at different times and at different ports which prevented the Senior Officer being able to correlate these accounts into a single report. This is the first time that this study has been published. The U-Boats were escorted by 8 Escorts Vessels from Lisahally to Libau in the Baltic. The group faced considerable problems such as numerous un charted wrecks. The weather conditions in December 1945-January 1946 made the voyage particularly difficult. The reception by the Russian Navy was far from warm, the crews were only allowed ashore in large well escorted groups. Includes copies of letters, reports &c 7 : 210x295mm 7 pages, 2 maps.
ISBN 978-0-85420-683-4 Hardback Edition £25.00
ISBN 978-0-85420-684-1 Softback Edition £15.00

Volume 9 – U-BOAT PORTS [This volume is only available to members of the U-Boat Archive, if a copy of this is required, it is suggested you contact the archive direct]