See also German Espionage and Sabotage Against the United States in World War II [at NHC]
From: Chief of Naval Operations. To: Distribution List. Subject: Report on the Interrogation of German Agents, Gimpel and Colepaugh, Landed on the Coast of Maine from U-1230, dated 13 January 1945. Enclosure: (A) Subject Report, copies as indicated below.
- Enclosure (A) is forwarded herewith for information.
- Transmission by Registered Guard Mail or U.S. registered mail is authorized in accordance with Article 76 (15) (e) and (f), U.S. Navy Regulations.
John L. Riheldaffer,
with 3 cc Encl (A),
with 1 cc Encl (A),
13 January 1945.
OFFICE OF THE CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS
REPORT OF THE INTERROGATION OF GERMAN AGENTS, GIMPEL AND COLEPAUGH, LANDED ON THE COAST OF MAINE FROM U-1230.
REPORT OF THE INTERROGATION OF GERMAN AGENTS, GIMPEL AND COLEPAUGH, LANDED ON THE COAST OF MAINE FROM U-1230.
ESTIMATE OF SOURCESPrisoner GIMPEL is a very difficult subject for interrogation. He was a professional German espionage agent, thoroughly indoctrinated in security. He believes that the death penalty awaits him and that nothing he can do will mitigate his sentence. He was untruthful on several occasions with his interrogators and told them only what he believed they already knew. His statements are of very little value.
Prisoner COLEPAUGH's statements are much more valuable. He is a somewhat unstable New Englander but impressed his interrogators as attempting to tell the truth. he is intelligent, very observant, and has an extraordinary visual memory for details. His attitude toward the interrogators was friendly and cooperative. He was always careful to distinguish between eye witness evidence and hearsay. The interrogators were under the impression that his helpfulness was inspired by the hope of escaping the death penalty.
DETAILS OF U-1230
Probably 750 tons.
From the prisoners' description, interrogators deduced that the type was IX-C.
Deutsche Werft, Hamburg. Launched September or October 1943.
Deutsche Werft, Hamburg. Launched September or October 1943.
The Olympic Rings, made of metal and welded to the front of the conning tower fairing.
5th at Kiel.
Very dark gray.
Ribs were visible inside the pressure hull.
Both prisoners described the compartments of this U-boat from forward to aft as follows:
- Forward torpedo room with a head to starboard.
- Petty Officer's quarters containing eight bunks.
- Chief Petty Officer's quarters (Feldwebel) containing four bunks.
- Galley. The stove was on the starboard side aft. Controls for "milking" the batteries were on the
starboard side forward. The port side contained two refrigerators.
- Officer's quarters containing two bunks.
- Commanding Officer's room to port; listening room and radio shack to starboard.
- Control room.
- Diesel room.
- Electric motor room.
- After torpedo room with a head to starboard.
An armored strip extended along the front of the conning tower fairing. It was placed on the outside of the fairing and was said to be about 1 inch thick. There were no air raid shelters on the bridge.
TORPEDOES AND TORPEDO TUBES
Six torpedo tubes, four forward and two aft. Twelve torpedoes were carried, six in the tubes, four on the floor plates forward and two on the floor plates aft. Subjects had no knowledge of the types. COLEPAUGH had never heard any discussion of an underwater firing torpedo device or of any new types of torpedoes.
Two twin anti-aircraft guns on Platform I. GIMPEL described these as machine guns and stated they were clip-fed. COLEPAUGH believed them to be 32-mm. caliber and described
the ammunition as being of various types. The types were indicated by the following colors: yellow, blue, green and black. (Interrogator's Note: The interrogators believed that these were normal 20-mm guns but that the possibility of a larger caliber should not be ruled out.) Platform II had a larger gun. GIMPEL described it as a clip-fed "machine gun". COLEPAUGH, on the other hand, stated that it was a 77-mm. gun (sic) and that the shells were loaded singly. He described them as being between 18 and 24 inches in length. This gun was said to have a muzzle flash shield and two seats, one for the elevator and one for the pointer. Both prisoners agreed that it was served by a crew of about six men. A forward deck gun had been removed before the subjects had joined the boat on 24 September 1944. No light machine guns were carried. Below deck, two sub-machine guns, for or five automatic pistols and a large supply of hand grenades were carried.
These were described as cylindrical in shape, 11/2 to 2 inches in diameter and about 8 inches long. They flared slightly at the top. They were said to have a pull-cord 9 minute fuse. During the approach to Frenchman Bay, the ship's secret papers were placed in two large sea bags with three scuttling charges in each bag. Charges were also placed in the radio shack and in the control room.
During the trials at Horten, the boat dived to a depth of 200 meters.
S.B.T. (Submarine Bubble Target)
Fitted. Used once for an Electrolot charge when the echo sounder was broken.
NOISE MAKING DECOY
This gear was described by COLEPAUGH. It's overall length was said to be about four feet. It consisted of a metal cubic box with a pyramidal shaped nose on which was a shackle for towing by cable, the diameter of which was slightly larger than the dimensions of the cable. (see diagram) The after end consisted of a metal cylindrical propeller guard, the diameter of which was slightly larger than the dimensions of the cubic box. The propeller was three bladed and resembled the fan used in wind tunnels. The angle of each blade was adjustable, a scale in degrees being at the base of each blade. COLEPAUGH believed that the blades were adjusted to about a 35ƒ angle. When the propeller turned, a hammer inside the cubic box was tripped, causing it to strike the side of the box and making a very loud noise. On the forward end of the cubic section, was a hook. A second hook was on the propeller guard and when in place, locked the propeller. COLEPAUGH saw this device in place on a 500 ton U-boat. He stated that the two hooks held it fast to the bulge of the tanks about in the position of the conning tower on the side opposite the Schnorchel (i.e. on the starboard
side). He had been told that the device could be released from the control room and that it was to be towed by means of a steel cable while submerged. He believed that the length of the cable was about 100 feet.
The crew of the U-1230 regarded this gear as a great nuisance. It was stowed under the deck boards forward of the conning tower along with a large coil of cable. On the passage from Kiel to Horten, the propeller started turning and the resultant clatter was very nerve-racking. The gear was debarked at Kristiansand, much to the relief of the ship's company. COLEPAUGH had examined the gear closely and stated it was made of excellent quality steel and that the edges were welded. It was unpainted and had only rusted at the welding. He had been told that during the trials, water pressure at 50 meters depth caused the sides of the cubic box to collapse thus rendering the gear useless. COLEPAUGH thought the gear was called "Klappe".
Diesels and electric motors seemed to have been standard type. There were no auxiliary Diesels. From the description rendered by COLPAUGH of the super-chargers, interrogators believed them to be of Kapsel type.
Fitted before subjects had joined the boat (before 24 September 1944). It was on the starboard side. The Schnorchel was said by COLEPAUGH to have been 18 meters.
Two basket-type antennae fitted, one on the nose of the Schnochel and one on the periscope housing. One "Tunis" antenna consisted of Fliege and M¸che. A spare tunis antenna was carried. This antenna was demountable and was fitted to a frame on the port side of the conning tower fairing. It was turned by a hand-wheel in the control room by the operator who wore ear phones. The Tunis gear was tested on the bridge by a battery and buzzer each time before use. No radar signals were ever heard on the basket-type antennae although there were frequently received broadcast from Deutschland Sender, Norway. The Tunis gear was considered very much more efficient.
The jumping wires were used as radio antenna and an extensible rod was mounted on the forward side of the conning tower fairing, slightly to port.
R.D.B. (Radar Decoy Balloons)
Neither of the subjects had ever heard of any balloons being carried.
BOTTLES CARRIED OUTSIDE THE PRESSURE HULL
COLEPAUGH stated that two large bottles, which he took to be air bottles, were carried under the deck boards aft outside the pressure hull and above the electric motor compartment. They were placed amidships and were
11/2 to 2 feet in diameter and 6 to 8 feet in length. He did not know the purposes of these bottles. (Interrogator's Note: German prisoners, under British interrogation, have stated that U-boats carry bottles outside the pressure hull for discharging metal powder as an anti-radar decoy.)
A radar housing was fitted but no radar set was carried.
- Echolot: Atlas type carried.
- Electrolot: Carried.
- An elaborate collection of charts of U.S. and Canadian waters. These were British Admiralty charts with depths indicated in fathoms. A chart with the track of the boat and its current position was always posted in the control room for the crew to see.
COLEPAUGH stated that U-1230 proceed submerged almost the entire passage from Kristiansand to Mt.Desert Rock. She first dived a few hours after leaving Kristiansand when her escort had departed. The normal procedure was to run on Schnorchel twice every 24 hours, each time for 2 ‡ to 3 hours. The times usually chosen were shortly after dark in the evening and before dawn in the morning. GIMPEL stated that the boat Schnorcheled only once every 24 hours, for a period of from 4 to 6 hours. The captain, who was characterized as being a cautious man, charged batteries as fast as possible, using both Diesels. He stated that during the periods of charging, both Diesels turned a 400 r.p.m. (Interrogator's note: Other sources indicate that 300 r.p.m. is the maximum speed for Diesels when Schnorcheling.) After proceeding in this manner for about three weeks, the U-boat ran on the surface about 4 hours in every 24 during the night. This phase, which was said to be outside of the range of the British patrol area, lasted roughly 2 weeks. The U-boat then resumed her submerged passage, Schnorcheling twice each 24 hours. Even during the six days spent in the neighborhood of Mt. Desert Rock, the standard Schnorchel procedure was observed.
The crew of the U-1230 had had no experience with Schnorchel before sailing from Kiel. Schnorchel training was carried out at Horten. The purpose of this training was to familiarize the Chief Petty Officers with maintaining trim at Schnorchel depth and to train the crew in the vocal transmission of orders. Many dives were made each day. The procedure was to submerge below Schnorchel depth, raise the mast and then to come to Schnorchel depth. After trim was established, the boat would then submerge below Schnorchel depth, lower the mast, and surface. This was repeated many times during the course of the trials. Once the nose of the Schnorchel undercut too deeply and the Diesels ran for several minutes before choking off. Extreme discomfort was experienced by the crew.
COLEPAUGH insisted that Schnorchel depth was 18 meters. He stated that the nose of the Schnorchel was slightly lower than the tip of the periscope when fully extended.
SCHNORCHELING IN ROUGH WATER
During heavy seas when Schnorcheling, some discomfort was suffered by the crew due to pressure variations. Experience showed that waves running parallel to the boat's track produced more discomfort than waves running at right angles to the track. Consequently, when seas were running parallel
to the track, the boat would follow a zigzag course almost like that of a sailboat when tacking.
COLEPAUGH was able to see the nose of the Schnorchel several times when he looked through the periscope but was never able to see any signs of exhaust gas.
DANGER OF GAS FROM USE OF SCHNORCHEL
Both COLEPAUGH and GIMPEL described an incident that occurred about one week out of Kristiandand. It was just at the end of a Schnorchel run. The U-boat had just begun to submerge below Schnorchel depth when the engine choked off and a suffocating gas was generated. GIMPEL believed it was carbon dioxide. All of the men abaft the control room were affected and eight of them lost consciousness. The U-boat immediately surfaced to ventilate and the crew went on deck, three of them being carried up on stretchers. The U-boat remained on the surface for thirty minutes. Some difficulty was experienced in getting the Diesels started.
NEW TYPE OF U-BOATS
COLEPAUGH described two new types of U-boats but had never heard the designation "Type XXI or XXIII".
COLEPAUGH saw at least six examples of a large new type U-boat in Kiel and had seen one on the passage from Kiel to Horten. He described these as being at least 200 feet in length and with no superstructure other than the conning tower. There was no upper deck and COLEPAUGH had not even noted a catwalk. He said that when the deck hands went forward to handle the lines they had to walk carefully to maintain their balance. He saw one oh these boats close-to with about one meter free-board. At this depth, the stern was slightly submerged and the raked bow was slightly above water. The whole silhouette at this depth had a very gentle "S" curve. The conning tower was extremely tall and very narrow. He estimated that it extended about twelve feet above the pressure hull. It was slightly stream-lined, had a tear drop cross section and, when seen either forward or aft, looked almost like a periscope. There was a door in the side of the conning tower at pressure hull level, as well as a normal conning tower hatch. The prisoner did not notice any other hatches. The conning tower was not enclosed at the top. No guns were seen. A yellow stripe
was painted around the conning tower, about two feet from the top which the prisoner believed was for aircraft identification. He believed that the boat was fitted with one Schnorchel. These boats were painted a light sea green or blue green. The above description was an eye witness account and COLEPAUGH made a distinction between this and the following information which he says was hearsay. He ha heard that the surfaced and submerged speeds of this type were the same, about 16 to 18 knots. The boats had high pressure toilets and a garbage disposal system. He had been told that one boat of this type had already been on patrol in the Caribbean. The boat had arrived back in Kiel sometime before the middle of September.
COLEPAUGH had seen only one example of the new small type submarine in Kiel. He described it as an exact miniature edition of the larger type. He believed it to be 40 or 50 feet in length and was manned by an officer and about twelve men. The boat was completely stream-lined and was an exact duplicate in every detail of the larger type, even to the yellow strip around the conning tower.
"ROCKET FIRING U-BOATS"
COLEPAUGH had heard of new types of U-boats that were undergoing special training at Stettin. These boats were fitted with a special rocket-firing device and the rumor was that they were to be used against the Eastern Coast of the United States. He believed that they were to be used in groups of ten or more.
COLEPAUGH was convinced that the oil used on U-1230 was not synthetic and was of good quality. On one occasion he had seen one of the cylinders stripped and was impressed by the cleanliness of the interior. He said that upon reaching Frenchman bay, the U-boat had used only about 1/8 of her fuel oil supply.
CHOICE OF LANDING PLACE
It was stated that the sealed orders given to the captain of the U-1230 contained instructions that the agents should be landed on Frenchman Bay. The Bay was mentioned by name and not by any system of coordinates. The orders further contained instructions that the captain should, at his discretion, choose some other spot for landing the agents should he deem it advisable. The choice of the spot and the method of landing was left entirely to him.
The captain once consulted GIMPEL and COLEPAUGH about landing elsewhere. The following places were discussed as possibilities for landing:
- South of Eastport, Maine.
- The North side of Newport, Rhode Island Peninsula.
- Areas near Plymouth, Massachusetts.
- Areas near Portland, Maine.
- Areas near Portsmouth, Maine.
The last three places were ruled out because the charts indicated the presence of mine fields. After much discussion, it was decided that Frenchman Bay was the ideal spot after all. The factor that influenced the choice was chiefly the necessity for deep water. The smooth surface of a protected inlet was also regarded as of great importance.
HEALTH AND MORALE
Both agents felt that the morale of the ship's company was extremely good. They knew of no special indoctrination or morale booster that had been given to the crew. The lengthy underwater passage was felt to be a great drain on the strength of the members of the ship's company. No vitamin pills were given but the diet was described as well balanced. Much canned fruit was served with the meals. The entire canned milk supply had been spoiled by the opening of the cans due to negative pressure during the Schnorchel trials at Horten. As a result after a few weeks at sea, no milk was available. Toward the end of the passage, it was noticed that the finger nails of the men were turning white. This was true of the young men as well as the older Petty Officers. When the two agents were put ashore, they were both surprised at their own weakness. They experienced great difficulty in walking and GIMPEL, with his almost 6 feet tall and of wiry build, was unable to carry the bag.
RELATION OF AMT VI WITH THE GERMAN NAVY
COLEPAUGH believed that there was no direct liaison between Amt VI and the German Navy. He was convinced that the only connection his mission had with the Navy was that of transportation. He stated that he had no instructions to report on ship movements or weather conditions when in the United States.
EARLY HISTORY OF U-1230
U-1230 was built at the Deutsche Werft, Hamburg. She was probably launched in September or October 1943. After commissioning, she proceeded to the Baltic for formal trials. Torpedo firing exercises were conducted of Stettin. The U-boat returned to Kiel a few days before the air raid, during which the S.S. St. Louis was hit by a bomb. Several splinters from this bomb pierced the tanks of the U-boat at the water line. She then went into dry-dock for refit. (The above information was obtained from COLEPAUGH who stated that it was all hearsay.)
FIRST PATROL OF U-1230
KIEL TO HORTEN
COLEPAUGH and GIMPEL arrived at Kiel 22 September 1944 and were quartered in the S.S. Milwaukee which was then being used as officer's depot ship. The two agents reported aboard U-1230 on 24 September. The boat was docked very close to the S.S. Milwaukee, the St. Louis and the New York. The U-boat was due to sail at 1100 but the Flotilla Commanding Officer failed to appear on time and the sailing was delayed. He finally made his appearance at 1400, gave a short talk to the crew telling them that he expected them to sink at least 15,000 tons and shook hands with each member of the ship's company. After this talk, the U-boat sailed and lay outside of the Kiel harbor Until the afternoon of 26 September. She then headed for Horten as part of the convoy. The convoy consisted of two 500 ton U-boats, four or five cargo vessels and two tankers. It was escorted by four minesweepers. Next morning the merchant ships proceeded to Oslo and the three U-boats put in at Horten, arriving there about 0700 on 27 September 1944.
HORTEN TO KRISTIANSAND
U-1230 spent six days at Horten undergoing Schnorchel trials and deep-diving tests. Once during a Schnorchel test, the Diesels ran for several minutes after the nose of the mast had undercut. The crew experienced extreme discomfort, all had violent nose bleeds and some of them ran around as though
bereft of their senses. The negative pressure was so great that several of the cans of food broke open. All of the milk cans were "popped", destroying at a blow the entire milk supply. This was not discovered until later. During the stay at Horten, slight repairs were made to a defective part of one of the compressors. The part was machined aboard a destroyer which was at anchor in the harbor.
U-1230 sailed from Horten the afternoon of 3 October and arrived at Kristiansand about 0500 on 4 October. While underway, radar signals were received on the Tunis G.S.R. and the captain informed the crew that he believed that a nearby convoy was being attacked by aircraft. The U-boat took no action as a result of this incident. The U-boat stayed in Kristiansand for two days, embarking oil, water and fresh supplies. It was stated that she carried sufficient supplies for a patrol of from four to five months. COLEPAUGH stated that when she was ready to leave, the U-boat was 12 tons overweight. There was some talk about leaving two torpedoes behind to compensate for this overweight but the final decision was against it. COLEPAUGH stated that at Kristiansand a wire net with a mesh of about two inches was installed some four inches inside the mouth of the Diesel air reduction line at the point where the Schnorchel connection was made. He had
no idea of the purpose of this net.
KRISTIANSAND TO THE ROSENGARTEN
U-1230 sailed from Kristiansand on 6 October at about 1800. She was accompanied by five 500 ton U-boats and was escorted by four destroyers. (interrogator's Note: From COLEPAUGH description, it is believed that the destroyers were of the Narvik class). Sometime during the night, the U-boat separated from the 500 tonners and at dawn the next day, her escort left. Immediately after the destroyers left, the U-boat dived to a depth of 80 meters and for the next three weeks, with one exception, she remained submerged. Twice each twenty four hours she Schnorcheled to ventilate and to charge batteries.
After being at sea for about a week, but at the end of a Schnorcheling period, the Diesels choked off, generating a gas which strongly effected all members of the crew abaft the control room. many of them lost consciousness but one man in the electric motor room had sufficient presence of mind to turn on the starboard motor, thus enabling the U-boat to come immediately to the surface. Upon surfacing, the captain ordered all members of the crew on deck and all hatches opened. The men were ordered to put on their escape lungs. After about thirty minutes on the surface, the Diesels were started with some difficulty. The U-boat then submerged and proceeded as before. She followed a Northerly course roughly parallel to the coast of Norway. When she reached the Rosengarten, the
captain discovered through soundings that he was 90 miles off course.
After being at sea for about 21/1 weeks, two Swedish merchant ships were sighted. The U-boat approached these ships but after determining their nationality, proceed on their course without attacking.
While following the Coast of Norway, occasional depth charges were heard exploding in distance. One night while proceeding through the Rosengarten, depth charges fell fairly close to the boat. The boat immediately submerged to 100 meters and tried evasive measures. COLEPAUGH stated that two patterns of three or four depth charges were dropped. He believed that the attack originated from aircraft.
While passing through the Rosengarten, the U-boat was attacked by aircraft. The attack occurred between 1600 and 1800 when the boat was proceeding submerged at about 80 meters. Without warning, two patterns of about four bomb each fell. They were close enough to cause the boat to shake slightly but no damage was incurred.
NAVIGATION AND STANDARD PROCEDURE AT SEA
All navigation was done by dead reckoning and with the aid of echo sounding. During the first three weeks of patrol, the U-boat never surfaced in order to take navigational sightings. While running submerged on electric motors, the usual depth was 80 meters. While the captain was at meal, he usually
ordered the boat to 50 meters so that she could be in a maneuverable position for surfacing.
Three weeks after leaving Kristiansand the U-boat surfaced. COLEPAUGH stated that by that time they were out of range of British patrols. For the next two weeks, the U-boat ran on the surface Diesel-Electric for four to six hours each night. A speed of about six knots was made. The weather was foul and it was not until about the third day after running on the surface that a star sighting could be made. This was the first time that a navigational sight had been taken on the patrol.
For about two weeks, roughly from 27 October until 10 November, U-1230 proceed on the surface at night and submerged by day. After this period, she resumed her former procedure of Schnorcheling twice in 24 hours, instead of surfacing.
SIGHTING THE BANKS
On about 20 November, the U-boat was over the tip of the bank of Newfoundland. This position was determined by echo sounding. From this point, The U-boat headed due south for deep water and, upon reaching a position 1° south of Sable Island, she turned West seeking the Nova Scotia light. The captain was unable to see the light and suddenly realized that he was lost. The boat then surfaced to take radio bearings. Commercial stations of
Boston, Portland and Bangor were received. Reception from Boston was the best of the three and on the basis of this D/F'ing, it was determined that this boat's position was south of Mt. Desert Rock. The radio operators were vehement in their expressions of joy at hearing American jazz music.
Shortly thereafter, Mt. Desert Rock light was sighted and at the same time a Liberty ship was seen heading for St. Johns. She presented a perfect target but no attack was made much to the disappointment of the crew.
THE PERIOD OF MT. DESERT ROCK
It was found that the dampness resulting from condensation which took place during the many days of submerged sailing, had caused damage to much of the gear. The echo sounder failed to function, the transformer being almost completely destroyed by dampness. It was necessary to wind a new transformer. When this was completed, it was found that when the hydrophones were used at the same time as the echo sounder, the fuse would blow after about ten minutes. This was finally adjusted. The battery hatch in the petty Officer's quarters had sprung a leak. Attempts were made to weld this while submerged but the water came in too quickly and cooled the metal before it could seal the opening. Eventually, it was necessary to weld this hatch while on the surface. These various repairs lasted for six days. During the daylight
light hours, the boat always bottomed, usually in about 100 meters of water. After dark, she proceed submerged on electric motors except for the normal period immediately after dark and before dawn when the Schnorchel was used for ventilating and charging the batteries. The submerged depth was between 30 and 50 meters. The captain always attempted to remain within sight of Mt. Desert Rock. Navigation was done largely by sounding and until the echo sounder was functioning properly, it was found necessary to use the electrolot. Occasionally soundings were even made by bottoming the boat. Once Mt. Desert Rock was lost and the boat surfaced and again D/F'ed commercial stations to obtain a fix. It was found that she had proceed too far of the Nova Scotia side of Mt. Desert Rock. Several times during these six days, fishing boats were heard and once or twice, these boats passed directly over the U-boat.
PASSAGE INTO FRENCHMAN BAY
On 29 November, in the afternoon, U-1230 began her passage into Frenchman Bay. She proceed submerged on Schnorchel until 1900. At 1600, Great Duck Island and Baker Island were sighted and a fix was taken. At 1900, the boat collided with a whistling buoy. After this event, the Schnorchel mast was lowered and the boat proceeded at periscope depth on electric motors. She ran with the tide and the current proved stronger than was anticipated, resulting in the completion of the mission some hours earlier than had been anticipated.
The U-boat, once inside the Bay, did not follow the normal channel but proceeded between Porcupine Island and Iron Pound Island. At about 2230, she was half mile off shore. A white house on Crabtree Point was sighted and the U-boat surfaced with her decks awash and only her conning tower above water.
The U-boat circled around to within a few hundred yards of the shore. A rubber boat was brought up from below and was inflated by a special line which ran through the conning tower hatch and connected with the electric compressor. COLEPAUGH stated that the inflation was absolutely soundless. Two unarmed members of the ship's company rowed the two agents ashore and then returned to the U-boat.
CREW OF U-1230
According to COLEPAUGH, the ship's complement consisted of sixty men, in addition to the two agents. COLEPAUGH traveled as a P.K. man (Propaganda Company) and GIMPEL as a Oberbaurat (Consultant Marine Engineer). The ship's company included three Commissioned Officers, five Chief petty Officers (Feldwebel) and thirteen Petty Officers.
Neither COLEPAUGH nor GIMPER would or could remember the name of the Commanding Officer. They described him as a Kapit”nleutnant between 30 and 35 years of age. It was stated that he had once been in the Air Force and this was the first U-boat command.
FIRST WATCH OFFICER
This officer was a native of Memel and had served on an operational U-boat in the Baltic that had been sunk.
SECOND WATCH OFFICER
The second watch officer was an Oberfeldwebel (Warrant Officer).
COLEPAUGH believed his name was Gunther. He was a below-deck promotion and had made a great many U-boat patrols.
The enlisted men were said to be inexperienced and had been recruited largely from small craft.
U-BOATS IDENTIFIED BY NUMBER
U-1231 and U-1233
These two boats had been working up in Horten a week or two before the arrival of U-1230 (27 September 1944).
U-BOATS IDENTIFIED BY INSIGNIA
COLEPAUGH noticed a 750-ton U-boat in Kristiansand about 4 October 1944. On her conning tower was an insignia representing a sea horse. This was described as a caricature of a horse with webbed feet. COLEPAUGH had heard in Kristiansand (4 October 1944) that a U-boat had recently arrived from France carrying 30 evacuees. The passage to Kristiansand was said to have taken forty days.
S.S. NEW YORK
Seen in Kiel 22 September 1944.
Seen in Kiel 22 September 1944. Was being used as an officers depot ship. Sometime prior to this date, a bomb had hit in the forward hatch and passed through the ship. The bridge was said to have been burned out.
S.S. ST. LOUIS
Sometime prior to 22 September 1944, this ship had been bombed and was lying on the bottom in the Kiel Harbor.
MINE LAYING DESTROYERS
Two large destroyers, judged from the prisoner's description to be of the Raubtier class, were seen in Horten late in September 1944. They embarked mines by day and laid them by night. The mines were described as spherical in shape and about four feet in diameter.
COLEPAUGH repeated a story which he had heard regarding the sabotage of a destroyer at Horten. He stated that this vessel had been built by Norwegians over a period of about two years. It was launched early in September 1944, and the night following the launching, was mysteriously destroyed by an explosion. The Germans believed that explosives had been attached to the hull of the ship by swimming saboteurs. As a result of this,
U-1230 was required to anchor off shore at night and to maintain a strong deck watch.
Several small Norwegian built E-boats were seen at Horten. They were described as having an extremely small beam and mounted a single torpedo tube amidships.
It was stated that many U-boats were in the harbor when U-1230 was there (4 October 1944). Five of them arrived on that date, three being type IX-C and two being type VII-C. One of the 500 tonners was camouflaged with white and black and presumably had been operating in the Arctic. Kristiansand was a base for converted trawlers that were used, according to COLEPAUGH, as anti-submarine vessels in the Baltic. They had no "Y" guns but dropped charges over the stern. They mounted anti-aircraft guns forward and aft. Many of them were decorated with paintings of Russian submarines they had sunk.
COLEPAUGH was surprised at the careless way at Kristiansand was defended. He saw no troops ashore and had been told that the coastal guns at the entrances to the harbor were dummies. He said that at the entrance to the harbor, there was a submarine net but that it was always left open and was not patrolled. There was not even a net tender visible.
HORTEN (see diagram)
COLEPAUGH described the following U-boat movements in Horten:
- On 27 September, U-1230 and two 500 tonners arrived.
- On 1 October, the above two 500 tonners left.
- On 3 October one 500 tonner and one 750 tonner arrived.
U-boats used a new submarine dock at the Northern end of the
harbor. The dock was long enough for only one submarine to tie up on each side. One or two small patrol craft were also using this dock. On shore near the dock was an empty shed and a narrow gauge railroad track ran through the entrance on to the dock.
At the western end of the harbor was an older dock to which several small Norwegian E-boats were tied. Southeast of it was a promontory on which were building yards. A sunken destroyer was just off this promontory. At the base of the promontory and slightly to the east was a sea plane hangar camouflaged to resemble a series of small houses. A second hangar was located on the sandpit forming the western boundary to the entrance to the harbor. The mine-laying destroyers never docked but always anchored in about the middle of the harbor. The harbor entrance was closed by a submarine net and a net tender was always present. To the west of the submarine dock was a high hill on which was located the quarters for the base personnel. It consisted of barracks, mess hall and canteen. COLEPAUGH believed that there were about 40 people permanently quartered here. The entire hill was being tunneled and the prisoners explored most of the caves. There were three entrances and a fourth served as a hole into which concrete for the floor was poured. The cave consisted of a series of long corridors about twenty feet wide with a semi-circular
ceiling. The hill was of stratified shale, easy to tunnel and COLEPAUGH did not believe that it could withstand a heavy bomb hit. Russian laborers were used in this work and Norwegians were employed to drive the wagons that were used to haul away the rubble. There was no attempt at security and no sentries were placed at the entrances to the cave. On the crest of the hill was a trench system. A board fence was on the northeast part of the hill and behind it was a second trench system.
Installations from P/W description and rough sketch.
Locations of installations and details should be verified from other sources.
Installations from P/W description and rough sketch.
Locations of installations and details should be verified from other sources.