Bismarck

The Final Days of Germany’s Greatest Battleship

Michael Tamelander, Niklas Zetterling

The sinking of the German battleship Bismarck—a masterpiece of engineering, well-armored with a main artillery of eight 15-inch guns—was one of the most dramatic events of World War II. She left the port of Gotenhafen for her first operation on the night of 18 May 1941, yet was almost immediately discovered by Norwegian resistance and Allied air re
Date Published :
January 2012
Publisher :
Casemate
Language:
English
Illustration :
8 pages b/w photos
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Paperback
ISBN : 9781612000756
Pages : 328
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
-
+
Available
$22.95
Hardback
ISBN : 9781935149040
Pages : 320
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
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+
Available
$45.00

Overview
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A gripping tale of heroism —and doom—on the high seas . . .

The sinking of the German battleship Bismarck—a masterpiece of engineering, well-armored with a main artillery of eight 15-inch guns—was one of the most dramatic events of World War II. She left the port of Gotenhafen for her first operation on the night of 18 May 1941, yet was almost immediately discovered by Norwegian resistance and Allied air reconnaissance. British battlecruiser Hood was quickly dispatched from Scapa Flow to intercept the Bismarck, together with new battleship Prince of Wales. They were ordered to find the ship quickly because, on their way from the USA, several large convoys were heading for Britain.

On 24 May, Bismarck was found off the coast of Greenland, but the ensuing battle was disastrous for the British. The Hood was totally destroyed within minutes (only 3 crewmen surviving), and Prince of Wales was badly damaged. The chase resumed until the German behemoth was finally caught, this time by four British capital ships supported by torpedo-bombers from the carrier Ark Royal. The icy North Atlantic roiled from the crash of shellfire and bursting explosions until finally the Bismarck collapsed, sending nearly 2,000 German sailors to a watery grave.

Tamelander and Zetterling’s work rests on stories from survivors and the latest historical discoveries. The book starts with a thorough account of maritime developments from 1871 up to the era of the giant battleship, and ends with a vivid account, hour by hour, of the dramatic and fateful hunt for the mighty Bismarck, Nazi-Germany’s last hope to pose a powerful surface threat to Allied convoys.

About The Author
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Niklas Zetterling is a military historian and researcher at the Swedish Defense College. His previous books include Bismarck, The Korsun Pocket, and The Drive on Moscow, 1941.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
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Foreword
Prologue

Part 1
1 Lessons from Previous Wars
2 The First Attempt
3 Preparations
4 Cruiser Warfare
5 ‘Now you pretend to be dead’
6 ‘For the first time in history…’
7 Operation Berlin
8 Rheinübung
9 The Home Fleet
10 The Visit

Part 2
11 Departure
12 Bunkering in Norway?
13 Holland and Tovey Put to Sea
14 Break-out
15 Pursued
16 Collision Course
17 Battle in the Denmark Strait
18 ‘Roll out the barrel!’
19 Farewell, Bismarck!
20 Air Attack
21 ‘Have lost contact with the enemy’
22 A Mysterious Signal
23 ‘Battleship sighted’
24 The Second Air Attack
25 One in a Hundred Thousand

Part 3
26 The Last Night
27 The Last Battle
28 The End
29 Epilogue

Notes
Index

REVIEWS
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”... a very interesting and useful history …once you start… you will be very hard pressed to stop until the smoke has cleared and the ship is sunk.”

- Internet Modeler

“…unable to put it down…I highly recommend this book for anyone that likes the study of naval battles or just wants to read about an action-packed sea battle.”

- IPMS/USA

“A fresh look at the life and death of the most famous German warship of World War II.”

- The NYMAS Review

“…a thorough treatment, including material from interviews with survivors of their sinkings and the impact they had on the naval war in the Atlantic.”

- Seapower

“A fresh look at the life and death of the most famous German warship of World War II…a very good read…”

- StrategyPage

“essential background and new historical insights make otherwise inexplicable elements of the Bismarck story much clearer, without diminishing the drama of the epic sea chase and its vivid, human details.”

- World War II

"outstanding book about naval warfare…real time, you are there style that conveys all of the anxiety of actual combat at sea."

- WWII History

“A detailed account of one of the most dramatic events of the Second World War, including interviews with survivors”

- Military History Monthly

“…exciting story-telling. Besides recreating the thrill of the hunt and allowing the reader to trace the movements of both sides on easy to grasp maps and diagrams…presentation in vivid detail and captivating images of the final hours of the German battleship on the ninth day of its first and only combat mission. It is a terrifying tales and a striking reminder of how impersonal, cruel and unforgiving modern military engagements have become... well crafted epilogue to one of World War II’s most notorious naval engagements.”

- International Journal of Maritime History

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