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WWI German Trench Art, U-139, Super Rare!
Lothar von Arnauld de la Perière (1886–1941)
Trench art from the World Wars may be common, but a piece from a super-submarine commanded by the greatest submarine ace of all time is extremely rare. This piece is made from a brass shell casing measuring 8.4 cm in diameter, the end is flared and it is hand engraved "Kaiserliche Marine/U-139/1914 -1918" surrounded by a shield border and featuring floral decoration and an anchor. 8 3/8" high, pleasing brown patina.
The U-139 was the first boat from "Project 46", a class of long range submarines which featured a pair of 1.5 cm deck guns and two 8.8 cm deck guns in addition to its 4 bow and 2 stern torpedo tubes. Its main role was to be used on the surface against merchant ships with the deck guns as primary armament. The conning tower’s command center featured 90mm of armor and the pressure hull was thicker than normal to allow for deeper dives. It was commissioned in May, 1918 and commanded by Lothar von Arnauld de la Perière, the most successful submarine commander in history, having sunk 194 ships, totaling 453,716 tons, during his 15 war patrols. Most of these were during his time in command of U-35 between November, 1915 and March, 1918. The U-139 sank four ships and damaged a fifth, all in October, 1918, just a few weeks before the end of hostilities
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