You are not logged in.
SM UC-63 in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

The Wartime Memories Project

- SM UC-63 during the Great War -


Great War>Ships
skip to content


This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site you agree to accept cookies.


If you enjoy this site please consider making a donation.



    Site Home

    Great War

    Search

    Add Stories & Photos

 Features

    Allied Army

    Day by Day

    War in the Air

    Prisoners of War

    The Royal Navy

    Training for War

    The Battles

    Those Who Served

    Hospitals

    Civilian Service

    Life on Home Front

    Central Powers Army

    Central Powers' Navy

    Library

    World War Two

 Submissions

    Add Stories & Photos

    Time Capsule

 Information

    Help & FAQ's

    Our Facebook Page

    Volunteering

    News

    Events

    Contact us

    Great War Books

    About


Research your Family History.











World War 1 One ww1 wwII greatwar great

SM UC-63



15th Aug 1917 Naval Action  As part of the Imperial German Navy's U-boat campaign of unrestricted submarine warfare German U-boats had started to attack British trawlers. They had previously been protected by the 1907 Naval Convention in the North Sea. In response, fishermen had requested weapons for self-defence. Some trawlers had been equipped with deck guns and had gunners assigned to man them. These vessels were generally skippered by members of the Royal Navy Reserve and to act on their own initiative if attacked.

On 15th of August 1917, a number of Lowestoft trawlers were fishing in the North Sea, off the Jim Howe bank. Among them were the armed smacks Nelson and "Ethel & Millie". Nelson, skippered by Tom Crisp, was armed with a 3-pounder gun while Ethel & Millie, skippered by William “Johnsey” Manning, carried a 6-pounder. At around 1415, Nelson came under fire from a U-boat, which had surfaced some 3–4 miles north-west of her position. Crisp cast off his nets, leaving them buoyed on the surface, and turned towards the U-boat to close the range. Nelson was hit several times as she returned fire, but her shots fell short of their target. Crisp was also hit and mortally wounded. Nelson began to take on water and sink. At this point, Crisp ordered the crew to abandon ship, which they did, taking to a lifeboat. During this exchange, Ethel & Millie had closed up from the south-east and, passing Nelson and her lifeboat, moved in to engage the U-boat. Manning proposed to stop and take on the survivors, but they refused. The trawler continued to close but she too came under fire from the U-boat and, after several hits, she was also left sinking with her crew also abandoning ship. Nelson's crew observed the men being taken from their boat and lined up on the U-boat's deck, but were unable to see more as their view became obscured by the haze. Nelson's boat pulled away to the southwest and escaped into the approaching dusk.

Nelson's crew were at sea for the next two days being eventually rescued by HMS Dryad, a minesweeper assigned to fishery protection. Crisp’s actions were reported, and he was awarded the VC for the seamanlike and brave manner in which he had conducted himself. The Ethel & Millie's crew were not seen again. They were not reported as prisoners of war and none returned to Britain at the end of hostilities. The suspicion at the time and subsequently, is that they were disposed of by the U-boat crew, possibly being left to drown while the U-boat submerged. The U-boat which attacked the two boats has been identified as UC63 commanded by Karsten von Heydebreck.

If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.



Want to know more about SM UC-63?


There are:1 articles tagged SM UC-63 available in our Library



Those known to have served on

SM UC-63

during the Great War 1914-1918.

    The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List


    Looking for help with Family History Research?   

    Please see Family History FAQ's

    We are unable to provide individual research free of charge, but do offer a paid service at competitive rates, the small profit from these services will be put towards the costs of keeping this website running. For more information please see our Research Services Leaflet

    Can you help?

    The Wartime Memories Project is run by volunteers and this website is funded by donations from our visitors.

    If the information here has been helpful or you have enjoyed reaching the stories please conside making a donation, no matter how small, would be much appreciated, annually we need to raise enough funds to pay for our web hosting or this site will vanish from the web. In these difficult times current donations are falling far short of this target.

    If you enjoy this site please consider making a donation.


    Announcements

    • The Wartime Memories Project is the original WW1 and WW2 commemoration website

      This website has been running for 16 years and receives in excess of a million hits per month. The website and our group will continue long after the 2014-18 events are over. We hope that people will continue to support us by submitting material and stories in addition to submitting to the new websites set up for the anniversary.

    • We are looking for volunteers to help with researching the activities of units of the Royal Artillery, Royal Engineers, Territorial Force, Regular Army, Pals Battalions, Kitchener's New Armies, Voluntary Organisations and the Ships of the Royal Navy. We currently have a huge backlog of stories and historical documents which need to be edited or transcribed for display online, if you have a good standard of written English, an interest in the two World Wars and a little time to spare online we would appreciate your help. For more information please see our page on Volunteering.

    Wanted: Digital copies of Group photographs, Scrapbooks, Autograph books, photo albums, newspaper clippings, letters, postcards and ephemera relating to the Great War. If you have any unwanted photographs, documents or items from the First or Second World War, please do not destroy them. The Wartime Memories Project will give them a good home and ensure that they are used for educational purposes. Please get in touch.





    We are now on Facebook. Like this page to receive our updates, add a comment or ask a question.

    If you have a general question please post it on our Facebook page.


    Mar 2017

        Please note we currently have a backlog of submitted material, our volunteers are working through this as quickly as possible and all names, stories and photos will be added to the site. If you have already submitted a story to the site and your UID reference number is higher than 229915 your submission is still in the queue, please do not resubmit without contacting us first.

    World War 1 One ww1 wwII greatwar great
    Did you know? We also have a section on World War Two. and a Timecapsule to preserve stories from other conflicts for future generations.




    Want to know more about SM UC-63?


    There are:1 articles tagged SM UC-63 available in our Library





    Recomended Reading.

    Available at discounted prices.







    Links


      Suggest a link















      The Wartime Memories Project is a non profit organisation run by volunteers.

      This website is paid for out of our own pockets, library subscriptions and from donations made by visitors. The popularity of the site means that it is far exceeding available resources.

      If you are enjoying the site, please consider making a donation, however small to help with the costs of keeping the site running.


      Hosted by:

      The Wartime Memories Project Website

      is archived for preservation by the British Library





      Website © Copyright MCMXCIX - MMXVII
      - All Rights Reserved