Zeppelins During WW1

Discussion in 'Prewar' started by KriegsmarineFreak, Jan 13, 2008.

  1. KriegsmarineFreak

    KriegsmarineFreak Senior Member

    I've been looking for a book that talks about zeppelins during WW1 like bombing missions. Do you guys know any good books on Zeppelins during WW1 or good sources?

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  2. raf

    raf Senior Member

    a zepplin bombed my home town wigan in ww1. how the hell did it make it to wigan withouth being shot down.

    during wwII wigan had no attacks and it had a ROF and mills but manchester and liverpool were bombed
  3. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    Deighton, Len, and Arnold Schwartman

    The title made me buy it...
    Not exactly an exhaustive survey, far from it really; but some excellent pictures gathered into one place.
  4. KriegsmarineFreak

    KriegsmarineFreak Senior Member

    Awhile ago on the German Ebay website I saw a Luftschiff (Airship) hat being sold by a German seller who had inherited the hat from a WW1 veteran. It went for a good couple hundred of dollars. I've noticed that the Zeppelin attacks during WW1 haven't been covered much in books. You guys seen any WW1 movies where Zeppelin attacks were featured? The only movie I've seen with such an airship attack shown is Hell's Angels movie.
  5. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  6. KriegsmarineFreak

    KriegsmarineFreak Senior Member

    Have you seen it? Is it any good? I read about the movie on imdb.com and it looks really good!
  7. the_historian

    the_historian Pillboxologist

  8. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  9. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    Trouble with a Google search using "Zeppelin" is more hits for Led Zeppelin that a WW1 type Zeppelin.
    And what's wrong with that!

    Is that the one with Michael York? I have a dim memory of it being somewhat unsatisfying.
  10. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  11. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Bit of trivia for you, did you know the Central market in Riga , Latvia was built from old Zeppelin sheds?
    Riga Central Markt

    On December 28, 1922 Riga City Council decided to build a new food product market in the city centre. For this purpose, the city authority signed a deal with the government to buy the Zeppelin hangars abandoned by the German Kaiser's army in the western Latvian region of Kurzeme (near Vaiņode). So Zeppelin hangars become a landmark of Riga for both Rigans and the city's foreign guests. Despite the fact that no aircraft has been ever stationed where the hangars stand today, the origin of the market pavilions has been always a subject of rumours and speculations....The initial plan was to use the whole hangars for the needs of the market, yet later it turned out that the constructions did not meet sanitary requirements set for a modern market because, being too high, their caused significant temperature variations inside. They also lacked necessary sanitary and technical facilities. Therefore, the decision was to use only the upper parts of the structures, while building the bases from bricks and reinforced concrete.
  12. geoff501

    geoff501 Achtung Feind hört mit

    Some Zeppelins on You Tube.
    Trouble with a Google search using "Zeppelin" is more hits for Led Zeppelin that a WW1 type Zeppelin.

    Use Advanced search and exclude the word 'Led'.


    (trainee search engineer)
  13. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Use Advanced search and exclude the word 'Led'.

    Thanks for that Geoff, learn something new about the internet every day.
  14. DaveW53

    DaveW53 Member

    The 2 definitive books about zeppelins in the Great War are:

    1. The Zeppelin in Combat 1912-1918 by Douglas H. Robinson, published by Foulis.
    This is the complete history of the German Naval Airship Division. It details the commanders and men of the airships, the attacks on England, how the zeppelins were built and contains diagrams, maps and photos.

    2. Zeppelin! A Battle for Air Supremacy in World War 1 by Raymond Laurence Rimell, published by Conway Maritime Press.
    This is the complete story of the zeppelin offensive. Both german and english aspects are covered in minute detail along with a vast number of illustrations.

    A quick google shows that both books are available out there but expect to pay £40 or more for each book.
    Good luck
  15. DaveW53

    DaveW53 Member

    Forgot to mention I have both books. So if you want anything in particular, let me know and I will look up the info and forward to you.
  16. WotNoChad?

    WotNoChad? Senior Member

  17. Mark Hone

    Mark Hone Senior Member

    There is a very good book on the Zeppelin attacks on Lancashire (including the 1918 raid on Wigan mentioned in an earlier post: 'Zeppelins Over Lancashire' by Peter J.C. Smith (Neil Richardson Local History Publications). Smith has also written similar works on World War II raids in the area. The Holcombe and Greenmount areas of Bury were attacked in the first Zeppelin raid on the area in 1916. On Christmas Eve 1944 a V1 came down just up the road in Tottington, killing several people. This was part of the last (to date) aerial attack on North West England.
  18. RAF Millom

    RAF Millom Junior Member

    We have a collection of then and now photos of the Wigan raid
  19. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin

    I live close to where Zeppelins were manufactured, Staaken airfield near Spandau.

    There was originally two great Airship hangers and works buildings. Non of which exist today.

    A new road has cut the old airfield in two, but the runway and peritracks are available to walk or ride a bike around.

    Due to the impostions of the Treaty of vesailles (Spelling?) one of the hangers was demolished in 1919 and the other used for film making for several years. Metropolis was one of the most famous, produced by Fritz Lang.

    The Staaken heavy bomber of the 1st world war was also produced there.

  20. DaveW53

    DaveW53 Member

    Smudger Jnr

    It must have been quite an operation. There were a number of airship building plants. The main one was at Friedrichshafen on the northern side of Lake Constance (Bodensee) in southern Germany, near the borders with Switzerland and Austria. In the summer of 1915 the Zeppelin Company began constructing a new factory at Staaken with 2 large single sheds. By 1917 at Staaken, there were 700 salaried and 4,000 workers (with many working on the “Giant” Zeppelin-Staaken R.VI biplane bomber. [Source: Douglas Robinson – The Zeppelin in Combat 1912-1918]

    Possibly the most famous zeppelin of the war was built at Staaken. A project was approved to send an airship (L59) to East Africa beat the British blockade and take ammunition and medical supplies to Colonel Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck. It would have to be a one-way mission. There were no facilities in Africa to refuel and enable a zeppelin to take off again. L59 after 16 days construction completed her test flight on October 25 1917 with Kapitanleutnant Ludwig Bockholt in command. The journey initially set off from Staaken November 3 to a base at Jamboli in Bulgaria. After several aborted attempts the zeppelin finally left Jamboli for East Africa on the morning of November 21. Crossing Turkey, passing the eastern tip of Crete L59 reached the continent of Africa near Mersa Matruh the following morning at 5.15 a.m. Crossing the desert and the intense heat provided further problems.

    The mission had started too late, Lettow-Vorbeck’s men were already mainly beyond help. At 12.45 a.m. on November 23 L59 received a recall radio message from the Admiralty at Nauen, near Berlin. Bockholt’s equipment barely heard the message and was not powerful enough to authenticate it. When he decided to reverse course the zeppelin was about 125 miles west of Khartoum.

    The 22 man crew finally landed at Jamboli 7.40 a.m. on November 25. They had been in the air for 95 hours and covered 4,200 miles. At the time this was the longest flight recorded. The 19,900 pounds of fuel remaining on board could have powered the zeppelin for another 64 hours. The men of L59 had demonstrated the possibility of intercontinental flights and paved the way for Graf Zeppelin and Hindenburg between the wars.

    The pictures below show Bockholt with his crew; the L59 at a hangar shed Staaken; a "Giant" flying over the shed; an aerial shot of Staaken about 1929 - showing as you said one of the sheds has been demolished.


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