Jürgen von Rosenstiel

Kapitänleutnant (Crew 33)

14 ships sunk, total tonnage 78,843 GRT
2 ships damaged, total tonnage 23,797 GRT

Born  23 Nov 1912 Kiel
Died  6 Jul 1942(29)Bay of Biscay

Kptlt. Jürgen von Rosenstiel


1 Apr 1933 Offiziersanwärter
1 Jul 1934 Fähnrich zur See
1 Apr 1936 Oberfähnrich zur See
1 Oct 1936 Leutnant zur See
1 Jun 1938 Oberleutnant zur See
1 Apr 1941 Kapitänleutnant


6 Jun 1939 Spanish Cross in Silver without Swords
5 Nov 1940 Iron Cross 2nd Class
22 Jan 1941 U-boat War Badge 1939
17 Mar 1942 Iron Cross 1st Class

U-boat Commands

U-143 20 Mar 1941 30 Mar 1941   No war patrols 
U-502 31 May 1941 6 Jul 1942  (+)  4 patrols (180 days) 

Jürgen von Rosenstiel joined the Reichsmarine on 1 April 1933 as part of Crew 33. During his training spent time on the sailing school ship Gorch Fock and the cruiser Karlsruhe (239 day world trip in 1933 and 55 days in Spanish waters 1936-1937). Lastly he sailed on the school ship Schlesien from Oct 1938 to March 1939 (126 days) (WASt).

He then joined the Schlesien crew, serving as radio technical officer and as a Watch Officer from July 1939 to March 1940, when he transferred to the U-boat force (Busch and Röll, 1999).

From April to August 1940 Rosenstiel went through U-boat training, and then joined the 2nd Flotilla as a supernumerary Watch Officer until Sept 1940 (Busch and Röll, 1999).

He was 2nd Watch Officer (II WO) on U-38 from Sep to Nov 1940, and then I WO until Feb 1941, when he commenced U-boat Commander training with the 24th (Training) Flotilla, and then with the 22nd (Training) Flotilla (WASt).

In preparation for taking command of a new boat Rosenstiel went through U-boat construction familiarization (Baubelehrung) at Deutsche Werft AG, Hamburg from 17 April 1941 (WASt).

On 31 May 1941 Kptlt. Jürgen von Rosenstiel commissioned the type IXC U-boat U-502 at Hamburg (Busch and Röll, 1999). He spent the next four months in the Baltic training his crew and preparing the boat for combat. On 29 Sept 1941 he took the boat out on the first of four war patrols (Busch and Röll, 1997).

He enjoyed significant success, sinking 14 ships totalling 78,843 tons and damaging two more of 23,797 GRT. His greatest success was in the Caribbean, and he sank the greatest tonnage on the fourth patrol, but on returning from that patrol, U-502 was herself sunk, by an RAF Wellington bomber in the Bay of Biscay. U-158 was the first U-boat sunk in a Leigh Light attack, and the first U-boat sunk by a Wellington. There were no survivors (Niestlé, 1998).


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.
WASt (2011). Career information on Jürgen von Rosenstiel.

Patrol info for Jürgen von Rosenstiel

 U-boat Departure Arrival  
1. U-502 29 Sep 1941  Kiel  9 Nov 1941  Lorient  Patrol 1,42 days
2. U-502 18 Dec 1941  Lorient  22 Dec 1941  Lorient  Patrol 2,5 days
3. U-502 19 Jan 1942  Lorient  16 Mar 1942  Lorient  Patrol 3,57 days
4. U-502 22 Apr 1942  Lorient  6 Jul 1942  Sunk  Patrol 4,76 days
4 patrols, 180 days at sea

Ships hit by Jürgen von Rosenstiel

Date U-boat Commander Name of ship Tons Nat. Convoy
7 Oct 1941U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Svend Foyn (d.)14,795brHX-152
16 Feb 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Tia Juana2,395br
16 Feb 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Monagas2,650ve
16 Feb 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel San Nicolas2,391br
22 Feb 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel J.N. Pew9,033am
23 Feb 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Thalia8,329pa
23 Feb 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Sun (d.)9,002am
11 May 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Cape of Good Hope4,963br
24 May 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Gonçalves Dias4,996bz
28 May 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Alcoa Pilgrim6,759am
3 Jun 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel M.F. Elliott6,940am
9 Jun 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Franklin K. Lane6,589amTO-5
9 Jun 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Bruxelles5,085beTO-5
15 Jun 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Scottsburg8,001am
15 Jun 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel Cold Harbor5,010pa
15 Jun 1942U-502Jürgen von Rosenstiel West Hardaway5,702am

14 ships sunk (78,843 tons) and 2 ships damaged (23,797 tons).

We have a picture of this vessel.
(d.) means the ship was damaged.

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.

Men who sank over 50,000 tons

Media links

German U-boat Commanders of World War II

Busch, Rainer and Röll, Hans-Joachim

Listing of all U-boat commanders

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