U-17 (second row, second from the right), Kiel Harbour, February 1914
|Ordered:||10 May 1910|
|Builder:||Kaiserliche Werft Danzig|
|Laid down:||1 October 1910|
|Launched:||16 April 1912|
|Commissioned:||3 November 1912|
|Stricken:||27 January 1919|
|Fate:||Struck 27 January 1919, scrapped at Imperial Dockyard, Kiel. Pressure hull sold to Stinnes, Hamburg on 3 February 1920.|
|Class and type:||German Type U 17 submarine|
|Length:||62.35 m (204 ft 7 in)|
|Beam:||6 m (19 ft 8 in)|
|Height:||7.30 m (23 ft 11 in)|
|Draught:||3.40 m (11 ft 2 in)|
|Test depth:||50 m (164 ft 1 in)|
|Boats & landing |
|Complement:||4 officers, 25 men|
SM U-17[Note 1] was a German submarine during World War I. U-17 sank the first British merchant vessel in the First World War, and also sank another nine ships and captured one ship, surviving the war without casualty.
On 1 August 1914, Oberleutnant zur See Johannes Feldkirchener was given command of U-17. On 20 October, U-17 stopped the 866 ton SS Glitra off the Norwegian coast, and having searched her cargo, ordered the crew to the lifeboats before scuttling the vessel. On 26 October, U-17 torpedoed the French ferry SS Amiral Ganteaume† in the Strait of Dover. The vessel made port before sinking, with the loss of 40 lives out of over 2,500 on board.
† - www.uboat.net credits the damage to the French steamer Amiral Ganteaume to U-24.
On 2 March 1915 the command of U-17 passed to Kapitänleutnant Hans Walther. On 12 June 1915, U-17 chased and torpedoed the SS Desabla off the coast of Scotland. The crew escaped on lifeboats while the vessel was scuttled and sunk. Walther's command ended on 9 January 1916 and the next day U-17 joined the Training Flotilla.
U-17 was decommissioned on 27 January 1919 and sold for scrapping.
Summary of raiding history
|Date||Ship Name||Nationality||Tonnage[Note 2]||Fate|
|20 October 1914||Glitra||United Kingdom||866||Sunk|
|26 October 1914||Amiral Ganteaume||France||4,590||Damaged|
|12 June 1915||Cocos||Denmark||85||Sunk|
|12 June 1915||Desabla||United Kingdom||6,047||Sunk|
|18 June 1915||Ailsa||United Kingdom||876||Sunk|
|8 August 1915||Glenravel||United Kingdom||1,092||Sunk|
|8 August 1915||Malmland||Sweden||3,676||Sunk|
|10 August 1915||Utopia||United Kingdom||155||Sunk|
|14 August 1915||Gloria||United Kingdom||130||Sunk|
|15 August 1915||Götaland||Sweden||3,538||Captured as prize|
|15 August 1915||Marie||Denmark||158||Sunk|
|16 August 1915||Romulus||Norway||819||Sunk|
|16 August 1915||Tello||Norway||1,218||Sunk|
|24 October 1915||Rumina||Sweden||1,418||Captured as prize|
- "SM" stands for "Seiner Majestät" (English: His Majesty's) and combined with the U for Unterseeboot would be translated as His Majesty's Submarine.
- Tonnages are in gross register tons
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "WWI U-boat commanders: Johannes Feldkirchener". German and Austrian U-boats of World War I - Kaiserliche Marine - Uboat.net. Retrieved 15 March 2015.
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "WWI U-boat commanders: Hans Walther (Pour le Mérite)". German and Austrian U-boats of World War I - Kaiserliche Marine - Uboat.net. Retrieved 15 March 2015.
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "WWI U-boats: U 17". German and Austrian U-boats of World War I - Kaiserliche Marine - Uboat.net. Retrieved 2008-03-25.
- "U-Boat warfare at the Atlantic in WW1". German Notes. Retrieved 2008-03-25.
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "Ships hit by U 17". German and Austrian U-boats of World War I - Kaiserliche Marine - Uboat.net. Retrieved 21 February 2014.
- Gröner, Erich; Jung, Dieter; Maass, Martin (1991). U-boats and Mine Warfare Vessels. German Warships 1815–1945. 2. Translated by Thomas, Keith; Magowan, Rachel. London: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-593-4.
- Spindler, Arno (1966) . Der Handelskrieg mit U-Booten. 5 Vols. Berlin: Mittler & Sohn. Vols. 4+5, dealing with 1917+18, are very hard to find: Guildhall Library, London, has them all, also Vol. 1-3 in an English translation: The submarine war against commerce.
- Beesly, Patrick (1982). Room 40: British Naval Intelligence 1914-1918. London: H Hamilton. ISBN 978-0-241-10864-2.
- Halpern, Paul G. (1917). A Naval History of World War I. New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-1-85728-498-0.
- Roessler, Eberhard (1997). Die Unterseeboote der Kaiserlichen Marine. Bonn: Bernard & Graefe. ISBN 978-3-7637-5963-7.
- Schroeder, Joachim (2002). Die U-Boote des Kaisers. Bonn: Bernard & Graefe. ISBN 978-3-7637-6235-4.
- Koerver, Hans Joachim (2008). Room 40: German Naval Warfare 1914-1918. Vol I., The Fleet in Action. Steinbach: LIS Reinisch. ISBN 978-3-902433-76-3.
- Koerver, Hans Joachim (2009). Room 40: German Naval Warfare 1914-1918. Vol II., The Fleet in Being. Steinbach: LIS Reinisch. ISBN 978-3-902433-77-0.
- Photo of U-17.
- Photos of cruises of German submarine U-54 in 1916-1918. Great photo quality, comments in German.
- A 44 min. film from 1917 about a cruise of the German submarine U-35. A German propaganda film without dead or wounded; many details about submarine warfare in World War I.
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "WWI U-boats: U 17". German and Austrian U-boats of World War I - Kaiserliche Marine - Uboat.net.
- Room 40: original documents, photos and maps about World War I German submarine warfare and British Room 40 Intelligence from The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, UK.