Kapitänleutnant (Crew 31)
19 ships sunk, total tonnage 96,314 GRT
1 auxiliary warship sunk, total tonnage 325 GRT
3 ships damaged, total tonnage 14,317 GRT
1 warship damaged, total tonnage 31,100 tons
|Born||19 Feb 1913||Tsingtau, China|
|Died||9 May 1941||(28)||Northern Atlantic|
|U-28||28 Oct 1938||Nov, 1938||No war patrols|
|U-30||Nov, 1938||Sep, 1940||8 patrols (189 days)|
|U-110||21 Nov 1940||9 May 1941 (+)||2 patrols (46 days)|
Kptlt. Fritz-Julius Lemp was the central figure of one of the most controversial incidents of the Battle of the Atlantic when, as commander of U-30, he spotted a large blacked-out ship zig-zagging at high speed on 3 September 1939. Lemp took an educated guess that this vessel was an armed merchant cruiser (an AMC, a converted liner fitted with deck guns to protect merchants), as passenger liners were not supposed to be zig-zagging like this one was, and he managed to hit it with two torpedoes, sinking the ship. The vessel turned out to be the passenger liner Athenia; 112 of her passengers died in the sinking.
Lemp achieved great success in U-30, sinking 17 ships and damaging two, including the British battleship HMS Barham (04). She was the first U-boat to make use of the French bases in July 1940, and on 14 August 1940 Lemp, aged 26, was the seventh U-boat commander to be awarded the Knights Cross.
Lemp's first patrol in the newly-commisioned U-110 was a disappointment after his previous success, and the second proved disastrous. The boat was captured east of Cape Farewell, Greenland in position 60N, 33W by the British destroyers HMS Bulldog, HMS Broadway and the British corvette HMS Aubretia. (Niestlé, 1998). The boat's Enigma machine and current code books were captured, with grave consequences for the Germans. Kptlt. Lemp was killed in action.
Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II.
Busch, R. and Röll, H-J. (1997). Der U-Bootkrieg 1939-1945 (Band 2).
Niestlé, A. (1998). German U-boat losses during World War II.
Rohwer, J. (1998). Axis Submarine Successes of World War Two.
Patrol info for Fritz-Julius Lemp
|1.||U-30||22 Aug 1939||Wilhelmshaven||27 Sep 1939||Wilhelmshaven||Patrol 1,||37 days|
|2.||U-30||9 Dec 1939||Wilhelmshaven||14 Dec 1939||Wilhelmshaven||Patrol 2,||6 days|
|3.||U-30||23 Dec 1939||Wilhelmshaven||17 Jan 1940||Wilhelmshaven||Patrol 3,||26 days|
|4.||U-30||11 Mar 1940||Wilhelmshaven||30 Mar 1940||Wilhelmshaven||Patrol 4,||20 days|
|5.||U-30||3 Apr 1940||Wilhelmshaven||4 May 1940||Wilhelmshaven||Patrol 5,||32 days|
|6.||U-30||8 Jun 1940||Wilhelmshaven||7 Jul 1940||Lorient||Patrol 6,||30 days|
|7.||U-30||13 Jul 1940||Lorient||24 Jul 1940||Lorient||Patrol 7,||12 days|
|8.||U-30||5 Aug 1940||Lorient||30 Aug 1940||Kiel||Patrol 8,||26 days|
|9.||U-110||9 Mar 1941||Kiel||29 Mar 1941||Lorient||Patrol 9,||21 days|
|10.||U-110||15 Apr 1941||Lorient||9 May 1941||Sunk||Patrol 10,||25 days|
|10 patrols, 235 days at sea|
Ships hit by Fritz-Julius Lemp
About ranks and decorations
Ranks shown in italics are our database inserts based on the rank dates of his crew comrades. The officers of each crew would normally have progressed through the lower ranks at the same rate.