|Ordered||16 Jan 1940|
|Laid down||17 Dec 1940||Blohm & Voss, Hamburg (werk 569)|
|Launched||3 Sep 1941|
|Commissioned||23 Oct 1941||Kptlt. Gerd Kelbling (Knights Cross)|
|Successes||9 ships sunk, total tonnage 38,290 GRT|
3 warships sunk, total tonnage 2,902 tons
1 ship damaged, total tonnage 4,853 GRT
1 warship damaged, total tonnage 1,625 tons
1 ship a total loss, total tonnage 8,426 GRT
1 warship a total loss, total tonnage 1,625 tons
Sunk 13 Dec, 1943 after a 32 hour-chase in the western Mediterranean in Bougie Bay, in position 37.38N, 05.58E, by depth charges from the US destroyer USS Wainwright and the British escort destroyer HMS Calpe. 51 survivors (no casualties).
Attacks on this boat
11 Mar 1942
At 21.26 hours, the boat was forced to dive by gunfire from HMS Lamerton about three miles ahead of the convoy PQ-13. Four attacks with 25 depth charges were then carried out by this destroyer and HNoMS Newport and the U-boat kept submerged until darkness. U-593 escaped with minor damage. (Sources: Ritschel/ADM199-1782)
12 Mar 1942
12.06 hrs, Atlantic, west of Lewis, Scotland: the boat dived on being attacked by a British Hudson aircraft (RAF Sqdn 224/E) in the vicinity of convoy PQ-13. Three 250lb depth charges dropped ahead of the diving U-boat caused no damage. (Sources: Ritschel/ADM 199-1782)
12 Nov 1942
The boat sank the British freighter Browning and was hunted for 16 hours by Allied escorts for her efforts. She nonetheless escaped. (Clay Blair, lists this in his book as the U-595 but U-593 sank the Browning) (Sources: Blair, vol 2, page 99)
19 Apr 1943
09.37 hrs, Mediterranean: the boat was bombed and damaged by a Hudson from RAAF Sqdn 459. (Sources: Rohwer)
5 Aug 1943
14.55 hours, off Sardinia in the Mediterranean: the boat was attacked by three American P-40 Warhawks from the 325th Fighter Group. The boat suffered a number of machine gun hits to the bridge area and returned to Toulon three days later. (Sources: Book "Checkertail Clan, the 325th Fighter Group in North Africa and Italy": pages 28-29.
Dr. Axel Niestle via e-mail on 23 April, 2006.)
3 Nov 1943
After U-593 sank Mont Viso of convoy KMS-30, she was forced to dive when another ship in the convoy opened fire on her. The U-boat then reloaded the torpedo tubes, but 02.30 hrs was located as she was returning to periscope depth by HMS Bryony which was picking up survivors behind the convoy. The corvette immediately dropped eight well-aimed depth charges and was shortly thereafter joined in the hunt by HMS Haydon. However, they could not regain contact and soon rejoined the convoy. U-593 inadvertently fell to a depth of 220m and was later forced to break off the patrol due to leaks and problems with the torpedo tubes. (Sources: KTB U-593/ADM 199-976)
13 Dec 1943
00.30 hrs, Mediterranean, northeast of Bone, North Africa: the boat was attacked by Wellington bomber MP816 (RAF Sqdn 36/B, pilot F/O C.F. Parker) during the Swamp operation that followed the sinking of HMS Tynedale and HMS Holcombe by U-593 on 12 December. The aircraft approached the U-boat after radar contact but the Leigh Light failed and it was hit in the port wing and tailplane by very accurate AA fire. The tail gunner fired 600 rounds at U-593 and a sighting report was made that led to her sinking by the US destroyer USS Wainwright and the British escort destroyer HMS Calpe. The damaged Wellington landed safely at Bone. (Sources: Franks/Zimmerman)
7 recorded attacks on this boat.
General notes on this boat
12 Dec 1993. The survivors of the sinking of the British destroyer HMS Tynedale by U-593 in 1943 invited ex-commander Kptlt. Gerd Kelbling and one of his former crew to attend a 50th anniversary commemoration of the event in Hexham, England. They were welcomed with friendship and respect.
Men lost from U-boats
Unlike many other U-boats, which during their service lost men due to accidents and various other causes, U-593 did not suffer any casualties (we know of) until the time of her loss.