Be advised that the following pages do present only few glances at the submarines of the Imperial German Navy. Comprehensive information about all submarines of the Imperial German Navy, such as U-boats, flottillas, dockyards and crews can be found at the webpage “Imperial German Navy”, which is maintained by assistants of the U-boat-Archive and belongs to the German U-boat Museum.
During WW I some 375 Uboats were built, 178 of those were lost in combat. About 5.000 submariners lost their lives. The most famous U-boat of German U-boats in WW I was U 9.
At the beginning of WW I the efficiency of U-boats was largely unknown. This changed dramatically on the 22nd of September 1914, when U 9 under the command of Kapitänleutnant (Lieutenant Commander) Otto Weddigen sank 3 British cruisers within one hour.
One month after that Weddingen sank another cruiser, becoming the nation´s hero.
From 1915 onwards the sinking of merchantmen became the U-boat´s most important task. This was considered the key to defeat Britain since the frontlines ashore were frozen.
At the end of WW I more than 12,000.000 BRT of 6.000 ships were sunk. The most successful Commanding Officer was Kapitänleutnant (Lieutenant Commander) Lothar von Arnauld de la Perière.