U-505

I wanted to share a few more photos from the Museum of Science and Industry trip last week, mainly from the U-505 exhibit.  This is probably my favorite in the whole museum.  Here’s a blurb from the MSI website:

On June 4, 1944, a German submarine known as U-505 was prowling off the coast of West Africa on a hunt for American and Allied ships, when depth charges from the USS Chatelain blasted the dreaded U-boat out of hiding.

It was the end of a violent run for U-505, which had terrorized the Atlantic Ocean as part of a massive U-boat campaign that almost altered the outcome of World War II.

The Museum of Science and Industry invites you to step inside the real U-505—the only German submarine in the United States, and, now, a national memorial to the 55,000 American sailors who gave their lives on the high seas in WWI and WWII.

MSI U-505 sub-9 MSI U-505 sub-10

WWII history is by far the most interesting part of history (you can see my piece that recalls the Katyn Massacre here) for me and I spent an embarrassing amount of my time travelling in Holocaust museums… Other parts of history, while always interesting, just don’t have this kind of pull on me.  So, needless to say, I’ve been to the U-505 exhibit numerous times, but have never actually taken a tour of the submarine until last week.

MSI U-505 sub-2 MSI U-505 sub-1 MSI U-505 sub-4

There is something completely surreal about standing in the same space as those from the past.  People whose view of the world was entirely different than what we see today.  People for whom our past was actually the future.  People who lived through the war that we learn so much about today.  The war for them was not about numbers and statistics as they are now commonly described with in history books, but instead, war for them was being on this sub.  Living in incredibly tight quarters, in incredible heat, sometimes a hundred days at a time.  They had no idea what the outcome of the war was going to be, I’m not sure how much they truly knew about the war in the first place.  And then, of course, the American sailors who went on this terrifying mission to capture the U-505.  It’s amazing to think that the sub that we now pay a fee to enter and view at a museum was once used to kill and destroy and the sailors entering it did not know for sure that they would be able to leave it alive.

MSI U-505 sub-7 MSI U-505 sub-3 MSI U-505 sub-6

Ok, that’ll be that for my tangent on being able to experience a little part of history :)  I’m also including a video from MSI showing how the sub was moved from the lake, across Lake Shore Drive and into it’s now permanent home (mainly because I like seeing the behind the scenes stuff):

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