19/2/1917 The Seeadler’s captain renews an old acquaintance

Germany hopes to win the war by strangling British trade with its U-boats, forcing the island nation to sue for peace. But submarines are not the only vessels with which the German navy is attacking enemy commerce. Surface raiders continue to operate against the enemy, albeit with great difficulty given the British naval dominance of the high seas.

One German raider is the Seeadler (the Sea Eagle). Like something from a bygone era, this is a three-masted windjammer (also equipped with an engine) that is preying on Allied shipping in the Atlantic after slipping past the British blockade disguised as a Norwegian trader.

Today the Seeadler captures a British merchantman in the South Atlantic, the Pinmore. For the Seeadler‘s captain, Felix von Luckner, this makes for an ironic coincidence. In his civilian dayshe had worked on the Pinmore, when he was just a lad of 17. Now this old ship’s crew are his prisoners.

image sources:

Felix von Luckner (Wikipedia; this may be from before he sailed with the Seeadler)

The Pinmore (Shipping Wonders of the World)

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