Why Was The Wreck Used For Depth Charge Practice?


Dec 2, 2000
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>>There seems to be enough inconclusive evidence to point a bloodhound in the direction of some kind of official policy.<<

There is no evidence at all to this effect.

>> WW1 British politics were hardly innocent.<<

Politics seldom ever is. What's your point.

>> I doubt "Lusitania" was chosen as a sitting duck, but some ship or even a near miss from U-Boats would have enraged America at that point.<<

Two points:
1) America was outraged. Very loudly so.
2) America did not stay outraged. Two more years would pass before the Zimmerman Telegram came up as the causes belli to enter the war.
 
Nov 14, 2005
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>>There seems to be enough inconclusive evidence to point a bloodhound in the direction of some kind of official policy.<<

There is no evidence at all to this effect.

>> WW1 British politics were hardly innocent.<<

Politics seldom ever is. What's your point.

>> I doubt "Lusitania" was chosen as a sitting duck, but some ship or even a near miss from U-Boats would have enraged America at that point.<<

Two points:
1) America was outraged. Very loudly so.
2) America did not stay outraged. Two more years would pass before the Zimmerman Telegram came up as the causes belli to enter the war.
I agree. Its tragic was happened to the Lusitania but to the germans she was a legitimate target. That can be argued of course. But they did take out ads in the american newspapers telling people that they( the liners) were targets and travel at your own risk or stay off them.
 
Dec 23, 2017
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I would recommend listening to interviews that Erik Larson gave in 2015 in talking about dead wake, they help explain some of this in nice detail
Here is a good one
 
Nov 14, 2005
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I will watch that tonight...don't have an hour plus right now to watch. Have you read that book? If so worth reading? Thanks for the link.
 
Nov 14, 2005
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Ok thanks. I just ordered the book. Amazon had the hardback for sale at the same price as the soft cover. From your recomendation and the reviews I read it should be an interesting read.
 

Rob Lawes

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Having looked into this a bit, it would seem that the 'depth charges' found among the wreck site are infact Hedgehog Anti Submarine Morter Rounds. This changes the story a bit and should help to dispel the conspiracy theories abound.

The Hedgehog Anti Submarine Weapon wasn't developed until 1941. It's purpose was to throw a pattern of morter bombs ahead of a ship so that an the enemy submarine could be engaged without affecting the performance of the attacking ships sonar. The sonar types in use during the second world war used an operator listening for the acousting 'ping' to return from any underwater contacts. At close range the ping would return so quickly that range and direction would be almost impossible to determine. Submarines within this range would out manouver attacks and reduce the effectiveness of the deapth charges. Also, depth charge attacks required the attacking ship to work out the depth of the submarine, required the attacking ship to run over it's target before dropping a pattern and until the water settled after detination would almost always causes the loss of sonar contact allowing the submarine a chance to get away. With the hedgehog, the attacking ship could almost creep up on the target, maintaining sonar contact the whole time and it didn't matter what depth the submarine was at because the hedgehog morter exploded on contact.

This brings us to the wreck itself. The hedgehog, as I said above, was developed in 1941 but didn't see wide spread use until 1942. Initial performace of the new weapon was found to be about the same as that of depth charge attacks. As a result of this, a widespread training programme was initiated n 1943 which saw a huge increase in the effective use of the weapon against U-Boats. There were two types of round used with he system. The High Explosive round for operatioal use and the practice round for training use. I believe, and this is just my speculation now, that the wreck of the Lusitania was used by ships for training for the exact reason Michael gave, it provided a strong sonar contact at a known location and depth which would have been ideal for putting crews through their paces. Given the cost, and use of high expoives, which would have been needed for use against the enemy, ships would have used practice rounds for training which would have contained the charge for launching the morter and possibley a small charge in the fused nose to signal a weapon had made contact with the target but NOT the full ammount of high explosives. Given that the front end of the morter contained a contact detonator the operational HE version of the morter would detonate on hitting something solid. If ships were using the practice version then this would explain why there are so many 'unexploded' rounds around the Lusitania because they were practice rounds they were never designed to explode. Had the RN really fired patterns of 24 Hedgehog rounds at the Lusitania, each containing 34 pounds of Torpex, the wreck would be devistated and very obviously so.
 
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Dec 23, 2017
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Thanks for all the great info! Looks like this mystery if finally solved. Such a shame the Lusitania was down scaled for wepon testing. I wonder what the wreck would have looked like if she was left undisturbed?
 
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Aaron_2016

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Perhaps it would look similar to the Britannic wreck resting on her side? We should be grateful the Britannic was not used for target practice as well. Imagine if the Titanic was!


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Dec 23, 2017
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Possibly, though the area around the Old Head of kinsale has a big reputation of bad winter tides so my bet is that she would not be like the Britannic in that sense, though she would be better of than she is. We also have to remember that she broke her back when she hit the bottom
Wreck-Map.jpg
 

Rob Lawes

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At the depth the Titanic sits at, no weapon could reach that far.

It could have been worse for Lusitania, there was a time when ships carried nuclear depth charges. Now they made a bit of a bang.
 
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Aaron_2016

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There were plans to blow up the wreck and salvage her treasure throughout the 1920's and 1930's. Would it have been possible to achieve this?

Found many articles about it. Here are a few. Does the wreck show any signs of nitro-glycerine detonation?


Lusitanianews1b.png


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Dec 23, 2017
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In all of my research iv never heard of that kind of damage, my guess the Hedgehogs is what destroyed any remains of the super structure
 

synchromystic

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>>but in reality they may have known in secret that the ship may have been carrying a greater amount that far exceeded the quota that was allowed<<

Bailey and Ryan in their work on the Lusitania refuted that over 40 years ago. There's no conspiracy, no secret cargos or the like. There never was.

Incorrect. from 2009:
"This past September, Bemis's team used a remotely operated vehicle to penetrate the wreck. They were able to clearly identify a vast amount of ammunition in an area of Lusitania not believed to have carried cargo. The Remington .303 caliber bullets the team discovered on the ship had been used by the British military during World War I. Ten of the bullets were brought to the surface. "

Just like Germanys false flag against poland.
Just like Americans false flag against Vietnam.
Just the iranian coup false flag op.
Just like the operation northwoods and proceeding bay of pigs op.
Just like FDR prior knowledge of pearl harbour.
Just like the false flag psyop of WMDs in iraq.
Just like the sept 11 false flag op.

An event needs to take place for one country to declare war on another, regardless if said country perpetrated the event for ones own gain.

THOSE WHO DONT LEARN FROM HISTORY ARE DOOMED TO REPEAT IT.
 
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Nov 14, 2005
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Incorrect. from 2009:
"This past September, Bemis's team used a remotely operated vehicle to penetrate the wreck. They were able to clearly identify a vast amount of ammunition in an area of Lusitania not believed to have carried cargo. The Remington .303 caliber bullets the team discovered on the ship had been used by the British military during World War I. Ten of the bullets were brought to the surface. "

Just like Germanys false flag against poland.
Just like Americans false flag against Vietnam.
Just the iranian coup false flag op.
Just like the operation northwoods and proceeding bay of pigs op.
Just like FDR prior knowledge of pearl harbour.
Just like the false flag psyop of WMDs in iraq.
Just like the sept 11 false flag op.

An event needs to take place for one country to declare war on another, regardless if said country perpetrated the event for ones own gain.

THOSE WHO DONT LEARN FROM HISTORY ARE DOOMED TO REPEAT IT.
The U.S. hasn't formaly declared a war since 1942. Probably won't ever again because that comes with legal obligations like actually winning it.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Incorrect. from 2009:<<

No it's not incorrect.

You really need to pick up the book and actually read it. The existance of the rifle ammunition has been known since 1915 and is a matter of record in the amended manifest which was filed with the U.S. port authorities right after the ship sailed. It was a perfectly routine shipment and the cartridges would not sufficient to last more than a couple of hours in actual combat.

>>An event needs to take place for one country to declare war on another, regardless if said country perpetrated the event for ones own gain.<<

Too bad the Lusitania wasn't it. There was a lot of diplomatic huffing and puffing but after awhile, it went away.

>>THOSE WHO DONT LEARN FROM HISTORY ARE DOOMED TO REPEAT IT.<<

Then you better practice what you preach and start reading it. The casus belli for the American Entry into World War One was The Zimmerman Telegram in 1917. Two years after the sinking of the Lusitania.

Oh...point of order: I do NOT indulge conspiracy theories.
 
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PRR5406

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It's true, unspent bullets have been found in great numbers inside the wreckage. The remains of hedgehog bombs have been found around the "Lusitania" as well. Documentation of the shipping manifest has pretty much concluded the presence of some materials aboard which might have been directed to munitions production. I have never seen any evidence, either hard or in documentation, showing weapons in the hold of the ship.
Why the British bombed the wreckage is a bit of a mystery. It is the last resting place of over one-thousand innocent victims. The wreck is well below the hull depth of approaching ships. No submarine from that era would risk entanglement in a sunken ocean liner. Further destroying the liner would be totally unnecessary in any event. It might have been some loony higher-up officer who felt it was a measure he could order, and therefore did it.
I am one of those shipwreck heretics who believe in retrieval of artifacts from lost ships, particularly a ship like "Lusitania", for historical documentation and display. The beauty of the era and the horrific destruction of pointless armed conflict, should be contrasted in a respectful, educational setting. I think the dead would approve if given a voice.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Why the British bombed the wreckage is a bit of a mystery.<<

Well, no, it really isn't.

It was a huge honking hunk of metal which made for an easy target for practice, and realistic or not, there were concerns that enemy submarines would use it as a hiding spot. In light of that, it's not surprising at all that the Royal Navy wanted to turn the wreck site into a health hazard.
 
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