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The Omaha Sunday Bee Magazine Page
'dOYTOTS 0 V) ..... f ' N t Otto Weddingen, the Daring German Submarine Commander, Who Tank the British Cruisers Cresay, Hogue and Aboukir in One Attack. THE German heroes of the present war have undoubtedly been the sub marine crews. The little submarines, manned by twenty five men apiece, and costing but a small traction of the warship, have sunk nine British battleships and fighting ships and over one hundred. oX .the merchant ships of the anti-German allies. In order to achieve this remarkable re sult, however, an extraordinary-amount of suffering, self-sacrifice and skill on the part of the submarine crews was required. Life on a submarine must' be like that of the Infernal regions. When the boat is submerged the oxygen in the air soon be comes insufficient, and It Is also so fouled By the Commander II Uf I and clear for sea. Ex- treme economical ra dius," Is the brief order brought to us by the admiral's staff officer. first lieutenant, with the acting rank of commander, takes the order in the gray dawn of a February day. The hulk of an old corvette with the Iron Gross of 1870 en her stubby foremast is his quarters In port, and on the corvette's deck he is presently saluted by his first engineer and the officer of the watch. On the pier the crew of U-47 await him. At their feet the narrow gray submarine lies alongside, straining a little at her cables. "Well, we've our orders at last," begins the commander, addressing his crew of thirty, and the crew grin. For this is U-47's first experience of active service. She has done nothing save trial trips hitherto, and has just been overhauled for her first fighting cruise. Her commander snaps out a number of orders. Provisions are to be taken in "up to tbo neck," fresh water Is to be put aboard, and engine-room supplies to be supplemented. A mere plank is the gangway to the little vessel. As the commander, followed by his officers, comes aboard, a sailor hands to each a ball of cotton waste, the sign and symbol of a submarine officer, which never leaves his band. For the steel walls of his craft, the doors, and the companion-ladder all sweat oil, and at every touch the hands must be wiped dry. The doorways are narrow round holes. Through one of the holes aft the com mander descends by a breakneck Iron lad der Into the black bole lit-by electrlo glowlampa. The air is heavy with the smell of oil, and to the unaccustomed long shoreman it is almost choking, though the hatches are off. Here In the engine-room aft men must live and strain every nerve even If for days at a time every crack whereby the fresh air could get in is hermetically sealed. On their tense watchfulness thirty lives depend. Here, too, are slung some hammocks, and in them one watch tries, and, what is more, succeeds In sleeping though the men moving about bump them with head and elbow at every turn, and the low and narrow vault Is full of the hum and purr of machinery. In length the vault is about ten feet, but if a man of normal stature stands in the middle and raises his arms to about half shoulder height bis hands will touch the cold, moist steel walls on either side. A network of wires runs overhead, and there Is a Juggler's outfit of bandies, levers and Instruments. The commander inspects everything minutely, then creeps through a hole into the central control station, where the chief engineer is at his post. With Just about enough assistance to run a fairly simple machine ashore the chief engineer of a sub 'aarlne is expected to control, correct, and, it necessary, repair at sea an infinitely Daring Commander Describes How It Feels to Grope Under Water Blind and Suffocated in an Atmosphere of Oil, Cabbages and Little Oxygen Qlv :5v;--:.r:ir.- ' : - - uiLA Tcs. ' in"" v ' . rtr-.-fn. iinrrasr. ,.JrtMM,;,r..1,.l.T.... , f i ' T V. Diagram Showing the Interior Construction of One of the , .,. : s JK v . Newest German Submarine. I . , , , . ' " ; J " J r ; 4 7 ' 7 j 3SA Daring Commander fe .::...s; k--v tf V'S - d by the oil and the smell of the machinery that it is nauseating In the extreme. When the boat Is on the surface the slightest wave breaks over it and the vessel rolls about as you may have seen a log do on the surface of the sea. In addition to these physical miseries there is the mental strain of not being able to see danger approaching and of not knowing whether you will ever see the light again. The captain of the German submarine boat U-47, which has greatly distinguished itself In these naval exploits, has written a most interesting account of life on the boat and their methods of action. Although the article Is written primarily to excite enthusiasm for the submarine war, it does not conceal the great hardships of the life. The article has been published widely In the German newspapers, and here is a translation of It: of Sub marine U-47. complex machinery which must not break down for an instant if thirty men are to return alive to the hulk. The commander pays a visit of inspec tion to the torpedo-chamber and strokes the smooth steel of the deadly "silver fish." His second-in-command, who Is in charge of the armament, joins him here and re ceives final instructions regarding the tor pedoes and the stowing of explosives. For the torpedo is not only an extremely com plicated weapon, but also a fine work of art, and it demands a very thorough ap prenticeship. Forward Is another narrow steel vault serving at once as engine-room and crew's quarters. Next to It is a place like a cupboard, where the cook has Just room to stand in front of his doll's house galley stove. Jt is electrically heated that the already oppressive air may not be further vitiated by smoke or fumes. A German submarine in any case smells perpetually of coffee and cabbage. Two little cabins of the slse of a decent clothes-chest take the deck and engine-room officers, four of them. Another box-cabin is reserved for the commander when he has time to oc cupy it. At daybreak the commander comes on deck in coat and trousers of black leather lined with wool, a protection against oil, cold and sea water. The crew at their stations await the command to cast off. "Machines clear," calls a voice from the control-station, and "Clear ship," snaps the order from the bridge. Then "Cast off!" The cables slap on the landing stage, the engines begin to purr, and U 47 slides away into open water. A few cable-lengths away another sub marine appears homeward bound. She la the U-20 returning from a long cruise in which she succeeded In sinking a ship bound with a cargo of frosen mutton for England. "Good luck, old sheep-butcher," sings the commander of U-47 as the sister ship passes within hall. The seas are heavier now, and U-47 rolls . unpleasantly as she makes the lightship and answers the last salute from a friendly hand. The two officers on the bridge tnrn once to look at the lightship already astern, then their eyes look seaward. It Is rough, stormy weather. It the egg shell goes ahead two or three days with out a stop, the officers in charge will get no sleep for Just that long. If 1t gets any rougher tbey will be tied to the bridge-rails to avoid being swept overboard.- If they are hungry, plates of soup will be brought to them on the bridge, and the North Sea will attend to its salting for them. Just as the commander is trying to bal ance a plate with one hand and use a spoon with the other, the watch calls, "Smoke on the horizon off the port bow." The commander drops bis plate, shouts a short, crisp command, and an electrlo alarm whirrs inside the egg-shelL The ship buzzes like a hive. Then water begins to gurgle into the ballast-tanks, and U-47 sinks until only her periscope shows. "The steamship Is a Dutchman, sir," calls the watch officer. The commander in spects her with the aid of a periscope. She has no wireless and is bound for the Con tinent. So be can come up and is glad, because moving under the water consumes electricity, and the usefulness of a sub marine is measured by her electrlo power. After fifty-four hours of waking nerve tension, sleep becomes a necessity. So the ballast-tanks are filled and the nut shell sinks to the sandy bottom. This is the time for sleep aboard a submarine, be cause a sleeping man consumes less of the precious oxygen than one awake and busy. So a submarine man has three principal lessons to learn to keep every faculty at tension when be is awake, to keep stern silence when he is ashore (there is a warn ing against talkativeness in all the German railway-carriages now) and to sleep in stantly when he gets legitimate oppor tunity. His sleep and the economy of oxygen may save the ship. However, the commander allows half an hour's grace foi music. There is a gramaphon", of course, and the "ship's band" performs on all manner of Instruments. At worst, a comb with a bit of tissue paper is pressed Into service. If a ship is sunk, three men only on the submarine will watch her go. The submarine man might hitherto serve all his time like a blind man as far as the out side world was concerned. Just before the war one of a submarine's crew about to be sent ashore to join the reserve, was asked by his commander if there was anything he would specially like to celebrate his last trip. "Yes, sir." he Bald. "I should like Just once to have a glimpse with the peri scope." The story went the round and now, during the war, the crew are oc casionally summoned, one by one, to the periscope. When opportunity offers they are also given a chance to see a merchant ship sunk. It is considered encouraging! - 1 J v v ' 5 ' i t ii4r .v. 4 s 1' . i-, i i V..J : : " I ' . A NEWLY INVENTED DEVICE FOR SAVING IMPRISONED SUBMARINE MEN. This apparatus invented by Captain Hull and 8urgeon Rees of the British Navy, Is dsslgned to save submarine sailors who are now hopelessly trapped and condemned to a horrible death In case the submarine Is held under water. TKs appa ratus consists of a thin copper helmet and a water-proof Jacket, the latter containing a pocket which Is Ingeniously fitted with a chemlcsl device for purifying tha man's breath, so that he can live and breathe freely for a considerable time under water. So successful have been the experiments that these life-saving suits are now fitted to all British boats. Each submarine Is fitted with air locks when a certain quantity of air la Imprisoned. When the boat Is trapped or wrecked the men can breathe for a period long enough to allow them to put on the eult Then they csn lift the hatch, pop out Into the water and rise to the surface where they can float until rescued. Science Explains Your Good Eoy's Sudden "Bad Spell" confronts inem wnen weir growing it u ouita nossibla thai him mrenta . i. ...riini trnafnrmH fmm .k i . .7 J J 7 T . Bet rortn ln medical Journals. In one cnanRlng from oey to day and from psychos s. All this occurs !n f""?! ! il". 7Ye-d .1" "T6" th' c.ulmn shock-not Such boys are not developing crim- of these-The Psychological Clinic, mood to mood. This is not surprls- any marked change in the . w n Vnh- ,h..V .JLJ;. in on'y ue e: D wis. mat tenaencjes; they are mereiy.whlcn specializes on this subject lng; for with new desires and or- conditions under whjch he a bad one. The change seems in- Rleht here the outraged fael hn irk nduminar ihrmirh m. nhvme . . i t,u r. .w. i ,. ., ., ..j .u. ...v... Probably no domestic problem he Is misunderstood and persecuted. Fortunately for such boys, and for brought to the notice of experts ln secretive, then most desirous of con- reliably performing acts that are 'u n so perplexes and often die- When punished he runs away from their natural guardians, science bat Juvenile delinquency. Institutes resslon; religious and sacrilegious ln usual, at least for him, foolish aut heartens parents as that which home, and when he is hrnurht hv ,r, A Ma 4i...in. v, have been organized for their study turn; going from one extreme to erratic. Sometimes tbls erraticlsir ... . """"'l uv..ui . J . ,a.,.U. ... . . . ....! ...v.l I. . . .... wlthoul externa.' lives. . . i f. .! . the onB1no fatnef roar and moral sickness covering a juvenile Psychopathic Institute, of strong emotions not yet supplied and unusual action is brief; a few miS L Molnerg' ePecilly' re him to commit a grievous error to period of a year or two, perhaps Chicago, presents an illuminating with adequate channels of expres- weeks or months during which on i ?me . ?w f,?use h1' boy 10 bft Dubllcl treated three years, that is due to the pro- discussion of the whole matter, with slon. which nevertheless react in be- Jannot anticipate what will occur, 1 ' mi H a rutu,r . f tne criminal, to be arrested and found physical and mental pheno- reports of cases which came under bavlor. sfter which the boy or girl displays ?.,71 f Jy aDC . . i tX ,0ked "P. to be herded with actual mena of adolescence. her personal observation. The title "Up to then he has shown no signs no further tendency to peculiarity or tm T Ule.aa"es ?l coon: criminals and, perhaps, turned into In the majority of instances tbls of the article, 'The Effect of Ado- of waywardness; he has appeared l;liuquency. In other instances a ..... .w,, --w c.lU4Wli u. ueu a criminal in raci, wnen, oa tne con- cnange is gradual and unaccom- lescent Instability on Conduct," al- a normal child, not difficult to con- eo Kentie. tractable and considerate, trary, he is the unconscious victim panled by any distressing symptoms, though dryly professional, la ln It- trol and exhibiting no unusual ten- tias suddenly developed heart-break- of a perfectly natural crisis of his But it the temperament Is nervous self reassuring. Here are some de- dencles. Perhaps his previous rec- lng tendencies. He is rude ln his development from boyhood into man. and excitable, tt is quite likely that ductlons drawn from her professional ord has been unusually good. Sud- manners, he lies, be seeks reckless hood, through which he only needs the results may be as above pic- experience: denly his behavior changes; it be- companlons. he neglects his lessons, to be guided with patient watchful- tured. "The adolescenr varies greatly ln comes contrary to the teuor of his When reprimanded be declares that ness and loving care. Such cases are constantly being bis behavior; he is now extremely earlier life; be becomes unstable, un- Conrltht. 1115, by the Stir Comoanv n.a.i n.it.u uh. 'finger period elapses before the In Itvldual reverts to his former sta bllity. Cut when the unusual con luct Is an adolescent pbenomenoa It terminates during that period uq less other new elements enter which prolong and alter lt.'