The Battle of Jutland
Sea War Museum in Denmark
War memorial outside the museum for the lost marines
Last year a new museum opened at the west coast of Denmark to make a memorial park for the 9000 British and German navy personal who perishes the previous day of May 1916. The thunder from the canons was heard at the coast where the museum is placed. Findings from the battle are on display together with photos and an animated video of the fight.
My husband and I visited the museum this winter. From their home page:
The world’s greatest naval battle took place during World War I on 31 May 1916. More than 240 battleships were involved in this showdown between British and German naval forces.
In the space of just a day, 25 vessels fell victim to a massive exchange of fire. Along with the almost 9,000 British and German seamen who perished, they were left to the fate of the ocean.
A small Danish trade ship caused the ignition of the battle as the two enemy fleets hadn’t yet seen each other. Excerpt from the homepage:
On 31 May 1916, almost the entire German High Seas Fleet set sail from the German North Sea ports with a view to meeting smaller British naval forces and defeating them.
The British Admiralty knew that something was afoot on the German side. Virtually the whole of the British Grand Fleet sailed from Scotland and the Orkney Islands north of Scotland, but neither of the two naval forces knew anything about the positions or intentions of the enemy.
Together, the two fleets consisted of at least 240 battleships, manned by around 104,000 seamen and 25 admirals. With their massive guns, each of the many battleships was capable of penetrating even the strongest of armour plating and destroying small towns in no time, for example.
Sailing on the North Sea, the small steamer “N. J. Fjord” from neutral Denmark was stopped by the smaller ships of the German Navy out in front. The engine of “N. J. Fjord” was shut down, sending out a great cloud of steam.
This cloud of steam was observed by the British ships at the front, which were sent over to investigate, and so began the first fights between the British and German naval forces in the Battle of Jutland. “N. J. Fjord” left the battlefield without being hit.
Impressions from the museum. The slide show can be stopped if you wish