Two Dutch trawlers had approached initially but bore away in fear of mines. HMS Aboukir at Malta – note 6″ weapons in casemates along sides. HMS Cressy was a Cressy -class armoured cruiser in the Royal Navy. Tuesday, 22 September 1914 sinking of the 3 cruisers HMS Aboukir, Hogue, and Cressy off the Dutch coast by U.9 being sunk one by one as each ship went in turn to the assistance of their sisters. Upon completion she was assigned to the Mediterranean Fleet and spent most of her career there. They were torpedoed by a single German U-boat and the day could be called the beginning of an era, an important wake-up call, and a major lesson to both Germany and Britain on … He was sixteen years of age. "Booty Trawl". The most devastating criticism was of Rear Admiral Campbell, who had been Christianâs superior, and for whom the latter had been acting â at the inquiry he made the remarkable statement that he did not know what the purpose of his command was. A further step in the path leading to disaster was made when Christian did not make it clear that Drummond had the authority to order supporting destroyers to sea if the weather improved, as it indeed did later the following day. HMS Cressy was launched 4 December 1899, and along with her sister ships HMS Aboukir and HMS Hogue, was torpedoed by a single submarine, the U9, off the Dutch coast early on 22 September 1914. Maximum Speed: 21 Knots on completion, probably 15 in 1914 Zigzagging at 13 knots was made mandatory for all large warships in submarine waters. Launched in 1905, she was just under 3000 tons, 385 feet long and carried nine 4-in guns and smaller weapons. Lord Charles Beresford never again referred to submarines as "playthings" or "toys". They continued to patrol as the weather improved until sunrise on 22 September.. Hit on the starboard side, the cruiser heeled over, then began to right herself.Â Some ten minutes later Weddigen fired his last torpedo from its bow tube. She capsized almost immediately and 524 of her crew died. Upon completion she was assigned to the China Station. U-9 dived and remained submerged. Hit by a torpedo fired by the German submarine U-21, she was to gain the unfortunate title of being the first British warship to … Primary Documents - Sinking of the Aboukir, Cressy and Hogue by the U-9, 22 September 1914 Reproduced below is a memoir of the sinking of three British cruisers - the Aboukir, Cressy and Hogue - by a single German U-boat, U-9, on 22 September 1914. Though the three ships lost in the Broad Fourteens were of little fighting value the impact on British public opinion was massive, not least because of the heavy loss of life. Only then did the Admiralty finally remove the old armoured cruisers from patrol duties. His orders wereÂ to attack British transports landing troops at Ostend, on the Belgian coast. 837 men were rescued but 1459 men were killed in total The impact on neutral opinion was equally powerful. In 1914, the best speed they could manage was 15 knots. Cressy was sunk on 22 September 1914 along with two of her sisterships, by the German U-boat U-9. Henry Charles Wickenden, was lost with the HMS Cressy on 22 September 1914. On September 24th U-9 entered the main German naval base at Wilhelmshaven to the cheers of the entire fleet. On September 21st he identified his position as some 20 miles off the Dutch coast at Scheveningen, the port of The Hague. Originally capable of 21 knots they now found it hard to make 15. Some accounts of the sinking have survived: We were struck right amid ships between the two funnels, quite close to one of the magazines. HMS Aboukir was a Cressy-class armoured cruiser built for the Royal Navy around 1900. Kapitaenleutnant Otto Weddigen, in command of the German submarine U-9 â the low number indicting just how early a unit this vessel was in the Imperial Navyâs submarine force â had left Wilhelmshaven on September 20th. The survivors were almost all naked, and so exhausted they had to be hauled aboard with tackle. The Dawlish Chronicles Blog. Self-propelled torpedoes dramatically increased effectiveness of submarine warships. Smoke was seen on the horizon and the U-9âs engines were immediately shut down to get rid of their exhaust plume. At 6:20 AM on 22 September, HMS Aboukir was torpedoed by SM U-9 and sank in 35 minutes. Of these, at least 31 men had connections to Ulster, most of them Stokers and three quarters of them part time reservists. Despite this âwake up callâ regarding vulnerability of warships at low speed the Royal Navy initiated a patrol of the northern entrance of the English Channel with five obsolete Cressy class armoured cruisers. The subsequent court of inquiry attributed blame to all of the senior officers involved – Captain Drummond for not zigzagging and for not calling for destroyers and Rear Admiral Christian for not making it clear to Drummond that he could summon the destroyers. A contemporary German drawing of the U-9 on patrol. Sketch of the Cressy sinking, by Henry Reuterdahl. Twenty-five minutes after the torpedo strike Aboukir capsized, remained on the surface, bottom-up, for a few minutes with a few wretches clinging to her, then disappeared. The squadron was composed of four obsolete Cressy Class Armored Cruisers, the HMS Cressy, HMS, Aboukir, HMS Hogue, and HMS Euryalus. The reality cannot have been much different to this, horrible as it was. Fifteen-year-old Wenham Wykeman-Musgrave was a midshipman on the Aboukir when it was rocked by an explosion and began to sink. The lessons of the Pathfinder, Aboukir, Cressy and Hogue sinkings still did not appear to have been learned at the Admiralty. Weddingen ordered the empty torpedo tube reloaded and identified Hogue as his next victim. Crew at commissioning: 760. Hogue and Cressy approached to pick up survivors, throwing anything that would float into the water for the survivors to cling to. The logic of maintaining a patrol in the area was unassailable as a fast German raiding force of destroyers could wreak havoc on British maritime supply lines between the English Coast and Northern France should they enter the Channel. He took his vessel down to 50 ft for the night, stopping his batteries, and resting his crew. Though destroyers and light cruisers would have been more suited to the task it was believed that destroyers would be unable to maintain the patrol in bad weather and insufficient modern light cruisers were available. 2 × BL 9.2-inch (233.7 mm) Mk X guns The other main actor in the drama was also moving towards the Broad Fourteens. ABOUKIR (survivor list included) ABBS, Tom W R, Sick Berth Attendant, M 4398 (Ch) ABRATHAT, William, Private, RMLI (RFR B 1999), 12609 (Ch) With Christian unable to transfer his flag, command devolved to Captain John Drummond of the Aboukir. She had an active career, also sinking HMS Hawke and serving in the Baltic, being the only one of her class to survive the war. The 34 vessels of this type that were in service at the outbreak of war had entered service between 1902 and 1908 â they were not old ships. And because they never sighted periscopes, they no longer zigzagged. Shortly after the outbreak of the First World War in August 1914, Cressy and her sister ships Bacchante, Euryalus, Hogue and Aboukir were assigned to the 7th Cruiser Squadron, patrolling the Broad Fourteens of the North Sea, in support of a force of destroyers and submarines based at Harwich which blocked the eastern end of the English Channel from German warships attempting to attack the supply route between England and France. Details of the Cressy class, of which Cruiser Force C was composed, were as follow: Displacement: 12,000 tons U-9âs periscope was spotted and the cruiser opened fire, the surged forward in an unsuccessful attempt to ram.Â Then, unaccountably, she stopped again. No money was to be spent repairing them, but they were to be used until they were completely worn out. Aboukir sinking – by the famous British maritime painter Norman Wilkinson U-9, still unsuspected, observed the disaster through the periscope. The sinking of the Battleship Cressy, together with the Battleships Aboukir and Hogue on the 22 September 1914 was a disaster in itself, but was made all the more significant because it ushered in the dawn of a terrible new weapon, the submarine. Pressdram Ltd. 2011. p. 31. After finishing her sea trials she passed into the fleet reserve at Portsmouthon 24 May 1901. But thatâs another story. The force pa… The earlier classes â the six ships of the Cressy class being the oldest â had very limited offensive capability, especially in rough weather. On 15 October the protected cruiser HMS Hawke was lost to the same submarine, U-9, off Aberdeen, when she was steaming at 13 knots and not zigzagging. The crew were immediately national heroes and Weddigen was awarded the Iron Cross, First Class, as well as other decorations. Rear Admiral Christian, in Euryalus, was in temporary command of the force. At the outbreak of war in 1914 all major navies had small numbers of submarines. Hogue and Cressy were now creeping towards Aboukirâs survivors and lowering boats. German reports that the sinkings were the work of a single submarine and the Times newspaper speculated that an entire German submarine-flotilla had been responsible, from which only the U-9 had returned safely. She remained in this position for 20 minutes, then sank at 7:55. – the Hogue is seenÂ dropping boats to pick up survivors, Â A contemporary illustration of the Aboukir’s end At 7:20, Cressy sighted a torpedo track, and the order was given "full speed ahead both", too late. HMS Cressy when new – still in Victorian livery. At 6:20 AM on 22 September, HMS Aboukir was torpedoed by SM U-9 and sank in 35 minutes. In a family letter he recounted in appalling detail what he had heard from members of the local lifeboat about the state of the human remains found when the area was searched. Hit amidships on the port side, the engine and boiler rooms were flooded and the ship listed to port. On September 22, 1914, the sister ships HMS Aboukir, HMS Hogue, and HMS Cressy were patrolling off the Dutch coast, tasked with supporting the naval blockade against Germany. This group was known as âCruiser Force Câ and the patrol area they were assigned to was in the shallow waters off the Dutch coast known as the âBroad Fourteensâ. The ship was sufficiently close inshore for her loss to be witnessed by many on the coast, including the future novelist Aldous Huxley. Fevered development during the First World War was to change such views but in September 1914 many commanders who had grown up in purely surface navies still held to such opinions. September 22nd 2014 saw the hundredth anniversary of the first massive loss by the Royal Navy in the First World War. There was little over a decadeâs experience of their employment and designs were largely experimental. He was the son of Mr and Mrs H. Wickenden, of 9 Dolphin Lane, Dover, and the husband of Mary Ann, nee Colyer, whom he … On September 20th 1914 Cruiser Force Câs patrol consisted of HMS Euryalus, HMS Aboukir, HMS Hogue and HMS Cressy, with a fifth vessel, HMS Bacchante in remaining in port. The sinking of HMS HAWKE: One of the greatest single losses of Royal Navy sailors from Ulster with 49 Ulstermen lost to just one U-boat. She could make 25 knots top speed but her limited coal capacity was the class’s Achilles heel. 30 Ulstermen are buried at sea, with only 1 Ulsterman with a known grave. Through his periscope he could see the surface strewn it wreckage, bodies, swimmers and overcrowded boats. The single torpedo was to prove enough to destroy Aboukir. I have the honour to submit the following report in connection with the sinking of H.M.S. Chatham-based cruisers HMS Cressy, HMS Aboukir and HMS Hogue were sent to the bottom of the sea about 20 miles off Holland in September 1914, leaving 1,459 sailors dead. , Coordinates: 52°15′01″N 3°40′08″E / 52.25028°N 3.66889°E / 52.25028; 3.66889. Cressy was hit forwar… Cressy was stationary and her boats had been lowered. Taken hastily from reserve âwhich meant they had been unmanned and poorly, if at all, maintained â on outbreak of war they were quickly overhauled and put back in service. Three vessels were approaching â the Aboukir, Cressy and Hogue â and Weddingen steered on his electric motors towards the central vessel, Aboukir. Armament: 2 X 9.2â, 12 X 6â and many smaller. After weeks of daily patrols, their old engines could no longer even maintain 15 knots and speed dropped to 12 knots, and often as low as 9. As the three Royal Navy cruisers sunk into the cold waters a few miles off the coast of the Netherlands. She eventually left home waters in early October 1901, arriving at Colombo 7 November, Singapore and Hong Kong in November. U-9âs batteries were almost depleted but Weddigen was determined to continue his attack. She was commissioned by Captain Henry Tudor for service on the China Station on 28 May 1901, but her departure was delayed for several months when her steering gear broke down shortly after leaving the base and she had to return. The original plan was to support the destroyers of Reginald Tyrwhitt's Harwich Force, but frequent bad weather caused the plan to change and the cruisers became the front line as they could handle the rough seas. Though only 32, Weddigen was an experienced submariner and had survived a peacetime accident to the U-3, from which he and 27 others had escaped though a torpedo tube. HMS Cressy was a Cressy-class armoured cruiser built for the Royal Navy around 1900. Each ship had over 700 officers and men from the Royal Navy reserves, many being middle aged family men from local towns and villages. Her commander, Otto Weddigen, was not so fortunate. At 10:30 a single torpedo from the German submarine hit HMS Hawke. This disaster in question was to cost 1459 men their lives and destroy three ships. Cressy, named after the 1346 Battle of Crécy, was laid down by Fairfield Shipbuilding at their shipyard in Govan, Scotland on 12 October 1898 and launched on 4 December 1899. A magazine exploded within minutes after the ship was hit and she went down with a loss of 259 men from her crew of some 270. The Bacchante class had been placed in the Reserve Fleet. All three cruisers sank within ninety minutes, with the total loss of 1,459 lives. Now hit on the port side the already stricken Cressy rolled over and remained on the surface, bottom up, for a further twenty minutes. Length: 472 feet H.M.S.Cressy. 12 × BL 6-inch (152.4 mm) Mk VII guns. Limited range and armament, low speed and, above all, short underwater endurance led many to believe that the offensive threat they posed, especially to warships, would not be great. HMS Cressy was a Cressy-class armoured cruiser in the Royal Navy. Hit by a torpedo fired by the German submarine U-21, she was to gain the unfortunate title of being the first British warship to be sunk in this way.Â The Pathfinder was a “Scout Cruiser”, a type which was to evolve in time into the Light Cruiser. HMS Cressy had stopped to pick up survivors, but got underway, before she was hit by a torpedo and damaged. 22nd Sep 1914 HMS Aboukir HMS Cressy and HMS Hogue sunk HMS Aboukir was a, armoured cruiser of the Cressy-class.She has been launched in 1900 and was sunk by a torpedo along with HMS Cressy and HMS Hogue on the 22nd of September 1914 by U.9 in the North Sea. Cheering erupted on U-9. 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