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Atlantis

CountryGermany
Builder NameBremer Vulkan AG
Yard Number736
Slip/Drydock NumberIII
Laid Down1 Jan 1937
Launched16 Dec 1937
Commissioned1 Jan 1938

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Atlantis Interactive Map

Atlantis Operational Timeline

31 Mar 1940 The armed merchant raider Atlantis set sail from Germany.
11 Jul 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank British ship City Of Baghdad 400 miles southeast of Ceylon. 2 men were killed and 81 were taken prisoner.
13 Jul 1940 German raider Atlantis sank British steamer Kemmendine 500 miles southeast of Ceylon; 57 crew and 25 passengers were taken prisoner.
24 Aug 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank British ship King City, carrying 7,300 tons of coal and coke for Singapore, 900 miles east of Madagascar, killing 6. Atlantis remained in the area, in very rough seas, to pick up the survivors.
9 Sep 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank British tanker Athelking (without any cargo) 1,200 miles east of Madagascar; 6 were killed and 40 were captured.
10 Sep 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank British ship Benarty 1,250 miles east of Madagascar. The entire crew of 49 were taken prisoner.
20 Sep 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank French passenger liner Commissaire Ramel in the Indian Ocean about halfway between Madagascar and Australia, killing 3. 63 crew members, mostly Australians, were imprisoned abord Atlantis. Fregattenkapitšn Rogge of Atlantis had wanted to transfer his 230 prisoners to Commissaire Ramel and send the French ship back to German as a prize ship, but situation did not allow him to do so. On the same day, the British Royal Navy formed a task force composed of Australian cruiser HMAS Canberra, Australian armed merchant cruiser Westralia, British cruiser HMS Capetown, and British cruiser HMS Durban to find and sink Atlantis.
22 Sep 1940 Allied convoy HX-72 continued to be attacked by German submarines about 600 miles west of Inishtrahull, Ireland in the Atlantic Ocean after being detected and attacked in the previous day. Between 0022 and 0214 hours, German submarine U-100 (Joachim Schepke) sank British ship Empire Airman (33 killed, 4 rescued), British tanker Frederick S. Fales (11 killed, 32 rescued), British ship Scholar (entire crew of 45 survived), Norwegian ship Simla (5 drowned after jumping overboard including master Hans von Krogh, 31 survived; see further detail), and three other ships. The 6.031-ton Simla, carrying scrap metal and steel, was hit by a torpedo on the starboard side forward of the bridge and sank quickly before the crew could launch the lifeboats; the survivors were picked up by corvette HMS Heartsease (K 15). At 0740 hours, U-32 attacked British ship Collegian with her deck gun, but return fire from Collegian drove off the attack. Meanwhile, 100 miles south of the Faroe Islands, German submarine U-31 sank Faroese trawler Union Jack at 1755 hours by deck gun fire; the entire crew of 7 survived. 1 mile off the French coast near Bordeaux, British submarine HMS Tuna sank Norwegian passenger liner Tirranna; the commanding officer of HMS Tuna did not know that Tirranna was a prize ship taken by German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis back in Jun, and it carried 274 prisoners; of the 88 killed, only one was German; the remainder were all civilians of friendly nations.
9 Nov 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis, disguised as British auxiliary cruiser HMS Antenor in the darkness before dawn, closed in on Norwegian tanker Teddy in the Bay of Bengal and captured the ship with a boarding party without firing a shot. Atlantis refueled from Teddy's cargo of 10,000 tons of fuel oil and captured the crew of 32.
10 Nov 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis, disguised as British auxiliary cruiser HMS Antenor in the darkness before dawn, closed in on Norwegian tanker Ole Jacob in the Bay of Bengal. After a tense stand-off, the Norwegian captain decided to surrender, fearing that a gunfight might ignite the cargo of 11,000 barrels of high-octane aviation fuel. Ole Jacob was captured as a prize ship and sent first to Japan and then to France, carrying a cargo of aviation fuel and the captured prisoners from Ole Jacob and Teddy. Ole Jacob's distress signal would resulted in the dispatching of Australian cruisers Canberra, Capetown, and Durban, but they would fail to catch Atlantis.
11 Nov 1940 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis stopped British ship Automedon with gunfire in the Bay of Bengal, killing 7 crew and 1 gunner. The crew of Atlantis boarded Automedon, capturing 87 survivors, cargos of food and cigarettes, and top secret Royal Navy documents detailing military deployment in Asia and code schemes.
6 Dec 1940 Captured (by German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis on 10 Nov) Norwegian tanker Ole Jacob arrived in Japan, carrying aviation fuel and the captured crew of tanks Ole Jacob and Teddy.
24 Jan 1941 German He 114 seaplane from armed merchant cruiser Atlantis attacked British ship Mandasor 300 miles east of the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean. Atlantis soon arrived, stopping Mandasor with gunfire, killing 6. A launch from Atlantic drove away sharks with machine gun fire as the Germans rescued 82 survivors. Mandasor was eventually sunk with a torpedo. As the He 114 aircraft attempted to land in the water for recovery, the rough seas caused her to capsize and become lost. Four Allied cruisers later arrived on the scene in response, but Atlantis had already departed.
31 Jan 1941 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis stopped British ship Speybank with gunfire and captured the ship. Speybank would soon set sail for Bordeaux, France where she would be converted into an auxiliary minelayer named Schiff 53/Doggerbank and serve in the German Navy.
2 Feb 1941 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis stopped and captured Norwegian tanker Ketty BrÝvig in the Indian Ocean overnight. With 6,370 tons of fuel oil and 4,125 tons of diesel oil from Bahrain aboard, Ketty BrÝvig was to be used as a supply ship for German raiders and warships deployed at sea.
18 Apr 1941 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis attacked Egyptian passenger liner ZamZam without warning 1,400 miles west of South Africa at 0600 hours, mistaking it for a British troop ship. All 129 crew and 202 passengers escaped in lifeboats before the Germans scuttled the ship with demolition charges. Life magazine photographer David Sherman, who was aboard ZamZam during the attack, took a photograph of Atlantis.
14 May 1941 German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis sank British ship Rabaul with shellfire 500 miles west of South Africa; 7 were killed, 51 were captured.
24 May 1941 German auxiliary cruiser Atlantis sank British ship Trafalgar 850 miles off South Africa; 12 were killed, 33 survived.
19 Jul 1941 Captured (by German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis on 10 Nov 1940) Norwegian tanker Ole Jacob arrived at Bordeaux, France, carrying aviation fuel and the captured crew of tanks Ole Jacob and Teddy.
22 Nov 1941 The British Royal Navy dispatched cruisers HMS Devonshire, HMS Dorsetshire, and HMS Dunedin to the South Atlantic to search for the German armed merchant cruiser Atlantis. HMS Devonshire successfully found Atlantis, fueling submarine U-126. While U-126 was able to escape, Atlantis' crew had no choice but to scuttle her.




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