The Bismarck was hit by over 400 British shells, but was still floating. 114 of its crew were rescued, while more than 2,000 were killed.
The German battleship Bismarck, the pride of the German navy at the time of Adolf Hitler, was sunk on this day in 1941.
The Bismarck and its sister ship Tirpitz were the largest battleships ever built in Germany, with a full load displacement of 50,000 tons, and a total length of 250 meters.
The Bismarck had a 150,170-horsepower engine, and over 2,000 crew members. The Bismarck was sunk on this day in the Atlantic Ocean, a few hundred kilometers west of the coast of the French region of Brittany.
British ships and aircraft spent two days preparing before they actually attacked the Bismarck. British torpedo bombers (after taking off from an aircraft carrier) damaged the steering system of the Bismarck, and the ship became easy prey.
Ships of the British fleet attacked Bismarck on this day in 1941. The British battleships, HMS Rodney and HMS King George V, had very powerful guns (406 mm gun and 356 mm), which were used to attack the Bismarck from the distance of over 10 kilometers. The Bismarck used its 380 mm guns to retaliate, and damaged HMS Rodney.
The British allegedly fired 700 shells by 10 AM, when a huge 406-millimeter shell from HMS Rodney scored a direct hit on the ship’s superstructure and probably killed many of the ship’s officers (the chief commanders on board were Admiral Günther Lütjens and Captain Ernst Lindemann).
The British fired as many 2,800 shells, and at least 400 shells hit the Bismarck, but it was still floating, although almost completely destroyed. The British also used torpedoes to attack Bismarck, and it finally disappeared under the waves at 10:40 AM. 114 of its crew were rescued, while more than 2,000 were killed.