DS reversed photo theory and battle maps comparison

Discussions about the history of the ship, technical details, etc.

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Antonio Bonomi
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Post by Antonio Bonomi » Fri May 13, 2005 7:55 am

Ciao Bill and all,

I fully agree with you and I will do the same this time here in :clap:

There is no value add anymore, and we are only wasting time providing every time detailed answers to Mr Winklareth incorrect / false statements like the one just written.

Here, thanking Jose' initiative ( :clap: ), it is enough to read back the post ( finally isolated and reduced to proper dimensions :clap: ) and everything will be clear for anybody that wants to understand what is going on and were we are on the matter.

We were at the point that my initial 3 questions made to Mr. Winklareth proving his theory irrefutably impossible and wrong did not receive any response but only saw him disappearing for a while.

George Elder suggested me to take what was obvious, so the failure admission even if not written.
For pity and humanity I did it and the conclusion was easy ( please read above ).

Well, if Mr. Winklareth like to '' restart '' that is the point he should restart from, to provide value add to the discussion and to this Naval Community .

Everything else is a waste of efforts, just like the anonymous or incompetent offensive post on the other forum that lately appeared ( :?: ) supporting him.

http://www.bismarck-class.dk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1572

That will not change the current facts reality :negative: .

We are still here :
As a summary, a body of opinion on this forum regards the theory of Bismarck having passed Prinz Eugen on the port side as being without foundation.
This time I should have used a very polite English wording :D .



Ciao Antonio :D

Robert J. Winklareth
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Post by Robert J. Winklareth » Wed May 25, 2005 9:33 pm

AUTOPSY OF PHOTOGRAPH NH69726

by Robert J. Winklareth, M.E.


1. Background

U.S. Naval Historical Center photograph NH69726 (Bundesarchiv 85/24/12) is one of six photographs taken of the German battleship Bismarck by Prinz Eugen cameraman Lagemann during the battle of the Denmark Strait on May 24, 1941 that shows the Bismarck on the starboard side of her consort, the German heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen, Other battle photographs show the Bismarck directly astern of the Prinz Eugen or to the port side of the Prinz Eugen.

Based on other evidence regarding the battle, it is most likely that the six photographs showing the Bismarck on the starboard side of the Prinz Eugen were taken during the second half of the battle after the British battle cruiser H.M.S. Hood had blown up and both German ships concentrated their fire on the British battleship H.M.S. Prince of Wales. The second half of the battle covered the time period from about 0601 to 0609 when the German ships ceased fire on the retreating Prince of Wales.

The six photographs were probably all taken within a period of two to three minutes since they are all in the same orientation with little change in inclination, the angle between the axis of the ship and the line of sight from the Prinz Eugen. Even considering the possible effects of cropping, the Bismarck appears to vary in size among those photographs, indicating that the Bismarck is at somewhat different distances from the Prinz Eugen throughout the sequence of photographs.

All of the six photographs showing the Bismarck on the starboard side of the Prinz Eugen are essentially silhouette views of the Bismarck since the image of the Bismarck is dark and lacking sufficient detail to positively establish the orientation of the Bismarck. It is therefore possible to view the Bismarck as either coming toward the Prinz Eugen or sailing away from the Prinz Eugen in each of those photographs.

The six photographs can be readily arranged in sequence with the Bismarck either coming toward the Prinz Eugen or sailing away from the Prinz Eugen depending upon how the series of photographs is viewed. With the Bismarck seen as sailing toward the Prinz Eugen, the photograph showing the Bismarck farthest from the Prinz Eugen and with the sharpest inclination would begin the series. The photograph showing the Bismarck closest to the Prinz Eugen and with the least inclination would end the series.

With the Bismarck seen as sailing away from the Prinz Eugen, the opposite would be true. The photograph showing the Bismarck closest to the Prinz Eugen and with the least inclination would begin the series, and the photograph showing the Bismarck farthest from the Prinz Eugen and with the greatest inclination would end the series. Changing inclination can be judged by noting the change in the gap between the command tower and funnel of the Bismarck in those photographs.

It should be noted, however, that the series showing the Bismarck coming toward the Prinz Eugen, does not make much sense. There is no logical explanation for the Bismarck being several hundred yards off the port quarter of the Prinz Eugen as late as 0601 and then suddenly appearing at an even greater distance off the starboard side of the Prinz Eugen just a couple of minutes later.

Furthermore, with the Bismarck coming from right to left in that series, the Bismarck would be colliding with itself since she is coming from the opposite direction in the earlier photographs. None of the first-hand eyewitness accounts of the battle mention the Bismarck making any turn to starboard during the battle, and the two gunnery officers on the Prinz Eugen describe the Bismarck coming up on the port side of the cruiser during the second half of the battle when both German ships were engaging the Prince of Wales.

The series showing the Bismarck sailing away from the Prinz Eugen does not make much sense either. Here we have the Bismarck first sailing from left to right toward the Prinz Eugen and then reversing itself and sailing from right to left away from the Prinz Eugen. These inconsistencies have plagued German authorities, historians, and authors for many years until a possible solution was discovered by an unknown American naval history buff and published for the first time in "The Bismarck Chase.".

When the six photographs were reversed to show the Bismarck sailing from left to right, they seemed to fit perfectly with the first photographs showing the Bismarck sailing in that same direction. Together they now formed a contiguous and tight series of views showing the gradual progression of the Bismarck from far astern of the Prinz Eugen, coming up on the port side of the Prinz Eugen, passing the Prinz Eugen off the port beam of the cruiser and then slowly moving ahead of her consort.

According to the Prinz Eugen Speed Chart, the cruiser maintained a steady speed of 27.0 knots throughout the engagement. We know that the Bismarck moved up on the Prinz Eugen during the battle, and that the Bismarck's maximum sustained speed was 30.0 knots. The most that the Bismarck could gain on the Prinz Eugen while both were traveling in the same general direction was 100 yards per minute, about one-third of a ship length.

In the eight minutes remaining during the second half of the battle from 0601 to 0609, the Bismarck could gain only three ship lengths on the Prinz Eugen, This meant that the six photographs had to be a tight match with the earlier photographs, and that could only be achieved with the six photographs in the reversed position. Many have tried to arrange the six photographs in their original orientation with the earlier photographs, but to no avail since it is seemingly impossible to do so.

Many do not accept this explanation in the belief that it is too subjective, so it became necessary to develop additional proof that either supports or refutes those conclusions. The purpose of this "autopsy" of photograph NH69726 is to obtain sufficient analytic information from the photograph to assist in resolving the issue. Analysis of the other five photographs in that series has led to inconclusive results due to the lack of sufficient detail for positive determinations as to the orientation of the Bismarck.

One professed authority in the field of photographic analysis has said repeatedly that nothing meaningful can be derived from the battle photographs due to their poor quality. While the quality of the photographs is not the best, a wealth of information can still be derived from them by a detailed analysis, even with persons having limited analytic skills. The extensive exchange of critical views regarding the photographs on different websites is ample evidence of the fallacy of that point of view.

As a former senior staff analyst with The Analytic Sciences Corporation (TASC) and with extensive experience in the technical analysis of military equipment deficiencies, I consider myself reasonably well qualified to perform this "autopsy" on NH69726. The term "autopsy" is usually associated with post-mortem examinations, however Webster's New World Dictionary also defines "autopsy" as being "a detailed critical analysis of a book, play, etc. or of some event." That definition would certainly apply in this case.

2. General Comments

Photograph NH69726 is of particular interest since it was taken when the flash of the Bismarck firing her after guns illuminated certain structural components of the ship. If the reflections of the flash off those structural components can be properly interpreted and evaluated, they could provide a clue as to the orientation of the Bismarck when that photograph was taken. This would assist in the quest for a better understanding as to how the battle was fought.

To achieve the best possible results, a glossy print of NH69726 was acquired from the U.S. Naval Historical Center for analysis. A glossy print, even if several generations removed from the original negative, provides far more resolution of details than printed copies of the photograph. The pattern of dots inherent in half-tone reproductions of photographs can easily be misinterpreted or imagined to represent details of the Bismarck that actually do not exist.

The actual area of the photograph in the 8x10-inch glossy print of NH69726 measured 5-1/8 inch high and 9-1/2 inches wide, with the image of the Bismarck being about 3 inches long. The forward area of the Bismarck is essentially in the dark while the rear of the ship is engulfed in a large fireball of flame measuring over 100 feet high and 200 feet long. The outline of the fireball is not distinct, indicating that its apparent size may have been magnified by overexposure of the film in the area surrounding the fireball.

The sky in the background is sufficiently light to contrast with the very dark image of the Bismarck and to clearly define the silhouette features of the ship. In the dark forward area of the Bismarck, there are several patches of light that apparently represent reflections from the flash created by the Bismarck firing her rear guns off certain structural components of the Bismarck.

Photograph NH69726 was probably taken with a 35mm camera having a focal plane shutter. There is some distortion in the central portion of the image due to slight camera movement as the focal plane shutter moved horizontally across the plane of the film.. This distortion, however, did not affect the general observations made, but it precluded precise measurements which in themselves could possibly have proven some points.

In addition to the glossy print of NH69726, the photograph was scanned, and a 3x enlargement of the Bismarck and a 5x enlargement of the center section of the ship were made at a resolution of 300 dots per inch to provide images more compatible with those in other photographs being used for comparison purposes. Other photographs used for comparison purposes include comparable port bow and port quarter views of the Bismarck as well as frames from the film taken of the Bismarck during the battle.

For proportional analysis, the detailed 1: 625 drawings of the Bismarck, contained in the book "Battleships - Axis and Neutral Battleships of World War II" by Bill Garzke and Bob Dulin, were used to determine the actual proportions of Bismarck components. All measurements on those drawings as well as on NH69726 were made using an engineer scale with 1/60-inch gradations for maximum accuracy.

Based on certain ratios between vertical and horizontal components of the Bismarck in NH69726 compared with the actual ratios, the inclination of the Bismarck to the line of sight from the Prinz Eugen is about 55-60 degrees, where 0 degrees is in line with the line of sight and 90 degrees is perpendicular to the line of sight. The small gap between turret Bruno and the superstructure of the Bismarck is also consistent with an inclination of 55-60 degrees.

3. Specific Observations

Since the Bismarck can be viewed as either coming toward the Prinz Eugen or sailing away from the Prinz Eugen, both perspectives must be analyzed, If the Bismarck had been coming toward the Prinz Eugen, NH69726 would have to be viewed as a port bow view with the Bismarck firing to port, but if the Bismarck had been sailing away from the Prinz Eugen, NH69726 would have to be viewed as a port quarter view with the Bismarck firing to starboard, these being the most likely scenarios.

a. Port Bow View

The starboard bow view of the Bismarck that was the first official photograph of the ship released to the public was scanned and reversed to serve as the primary standard for comparison with NH69726 when viewed as a port bow view of the ship. Other comparable port bow views of the Bismarck and her sister ship, the Tirpitz, were also used in the analysis to see the Bismarck in somewhat different perspectives.

With the Bismarck firing to port in port bow views of the ship, certain structural components on the port side of the Bismarck would be expected to be illuminated by the flash of her rear guns as shown in NH69726.

(1) Forward Turrets

The Bismarck's forward turrets appear to be almost perpendicular to the line of sight from the Prinz Eugen. This is consistent with the Bismarck firing to port with the forward turrets trained at almost the maximum range of traverse toward the rear of the ship. The lack of any illumination of the forward turrets, however, is not consistent with the Bismarck firing to port.

(2) Forward Superstructure

There is a large vertical pattern of dim illumination forward of the control tower seen in NH69726. This is not consistent with any structural components of the Bismarck that can be seen in port bow views of the ship.

In NH69726, there is an area on the second deck just before the forward edge of the funnel that is dimly illuminated. That illuminated area is not consistent with any structural components seen in port bow views of the Bismarck.

There are, however, large areas on the port side forward superstructure that remain completely in the dark, and this is also not consistent with the Bismarck firing to port. Those areas include the armored command center and exposed portions of the upper decks.

(3) Control Tower

The right half of the control tower, also known as the battle mast or fighting top, appears to be illuminated by the flash from the Bismarck firing her after guns, which would be consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port. However, the platform for the upper AA gun, which extends forward from the center of the port side of the tower, is not evident in NH69726. This is not consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

The illuminated structure on the front side of the upper portion of the control tower is consistent with the location of the forward searchlight platform, which is integral with the port and starboard upper AA gun platforms attached to the tower The projection to the left of that structure is consistent with the starboard upper AA gun platform.

In port bow views of the Bismarck, the wings of the bridge structure appear to extend outward sufficiently to block the full view of the control tower, but this is not evident in NH69726. Therefore, this is not consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(4) Forward AA Director

The armored globe-topped forward port AA director, which is located just outboard of the control tower, is not seen in NH69726, but in a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port, it would be conspicuously visible. This would not be consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(5) Foremast

In NH69726, the Bismarck's foremast, which is mounted on the walkway between the control tower and the funnel to provide clearance for the rotation of the upper rangefinder, seems to extend all the way down to its base behind the control tower. This is not possible since the lower part of the foremast would be hidden by the upper tower structure and the wings of the bridge in a port bow view of the ship.

(6) Secondary Armament

The two bright patches of light amidships atop the main deck, as seen in NH69726, are consistent with the location, size and shape of the forward and center dual 150mm gun turrets and their barbettes. The rear dual 150mm gun turret, however, appears to be missing. There is an erratic pattern of partial illumination in the area where the rear 150mm gun turret should be, but that illumination is not sufficient or distinct in size or shape to be identified as the rear gun turret.

(7) Antiaircraft Armament

There are three twin 105mm AA gun mounts located on the first upper deck on each side of the Bismarck, one outboard of the forward control tower and two outboard of the main (rear) mast. While not as conspicuous as the 150mm gun turrets, they nevertheless should be seen as illuminated by the flash in a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port, but they are not visible in NH69726. This would not be consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(8) Funnel

Most of the port side of the funnel appears to have been illuminated by the flash, which is consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(9) Central Searchlights

The central searchlights are mounted in the four corners of a platform surrounding the funnel, and this is consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck. The half-domed forward starboard searchlight appears to be projecting to the left of the funnel while the rear port searchlight appears to be projecting to the right of the funnel. The half-domed forward port searchlight appears to be just to the right of the left edge of the funnel while the starboard rear searchlight would be hidden behind the funnel in this perspective.

The images of the two forward central searchlights in NH69726 are too indistinct to positively establish whether their half-domed covers were in the "up" or "down" position. In a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port, the forward port searchlight would have been conspicuously illuminated by the flash, especially if its cover had been in the "up" position.

(10) Main (Rear) Mast

The right half of rudder indicator box mounted on the main (rear) mast appears to be illuminated by the flash, which is consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(11) Launches

Launches were stowed mostly outboard of the funnel and main (rear) mast of the Bismarck, but none are seen to be illuminated in NH69726. This would not be consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(12) After Superstructure

Much of the after superstructure is in the dark and the remainder does not appear to be consistent with the configuration of the after superstructure as seen in port bow views of the Bismarck. The lack of illumination of port surfaces of the after superstructure, especially in view of their close proximity to the fireball, would not be consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(13) Rear Turrets

Most of the area in the vicinity of the rear turrets is obscured by the flash of the Bismarck firing her rear guns. There is one dark area, however, which appears to be on the main deck and is consistent with the location of turret Dora. The question remains, however, why this area is not illuminated by the flash as the surrounding areas are? This is another inconsistency between NH69726 and a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

(14) Hull

Perhaps the greatest inconsistency between NH69726 and port bow views of the Bismarck firing to port is the complete lack of any illumination of the hull. At least the central portion of the hull would act somewhat like a mirror and reflect a bright image of the flash back toward the camera on the Prinz Eugen. It is most likely that the entire forward portion of the hull would have been at least partially illuminated by the flash, but to have absolutely no illumination is truly inconceivable.

(15) Surrounding Area

There is no visible evidence in NH69726 of the blast effect of the Bismarck firing her guns to port. The force of the blast from the Bismarck's guns would have churned up the surface of the sea into a white frothy carpet extending over 100 yards outward from the muzzles of the guns, but this effect is not seen on the port side of the Bismarck in NH69726.

b. Port Quarter View

Two photographs were used as the standard for comparison with NH69726 seen as a port quarter view of the Bismarck. The first is the port quarter view of the Bismarck in the book "The Battleship Bismarck - A Documentary in Words and Pictures" by Ulrich Elfrath and Bodo Herzog. In this photograph, the Bismarck is illuminated by the sun in a manner similar to the flash patterns seen in NH69726,

The second photograph is the starboard quarter view of the Bismarck with her striped camouflage pattern while en route to Norway. That photograph was scanned and reversed to provide a direct comparison with NH69726. The last photograph shows the Bismarck in the same combat configuration and at about the same inclination as in NH69726.

(1) Forward Turrets

The forward turrets appear to be almost perpendicular to the line of sight from the Prinz Eugen in NH69725, and this is consistent with the turrets being aimed somewhat forward of the starboard beam as seen in a port quarter view of the Bismarck.

(2) Forward Superstructure

The port side of the forward superstructure is mostly in the dark in NH69726, which is consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard.

In NH69726, there is an area on the second deck just before the forward edge of the funnel that is dimly illuminated. That area is consistent with the rear edge of the forward superstructure which ends there to provide a gap for the aircraft catapult mounted crosswise on the main deck behind the funnel.

(3) Control Tower

The right half of the control tower is illuminated, which is consistent with the rear surface of the control tower reflecting the flash from the Bismarck firing her rear main armament guns as seen in a port quarter view of the Bismarck. The rear surface of the control tower is essentially unobstructed from under the very top platform down to the walkway between the control tower and the funnel.

The partially illuminated structure on the port side of the control tower is consistent with the edge of the upper antiaircraft gun position reflecting the flash from the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard. The light from the flash passing through the gap between the control tower and funnel to the upper AA gun position can be readily demonstrated graphically by using a scale top view of the Bismarck and drawing lines from the fireball to the rear edge of the tower and to the front edge of the funnel.

(4) Forward AA Director

The large vertical strip of light seen to the left of the control tower in NH69726 is consistent with the armored globe-topped forward port AA director being illuminated by the flash of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard. As with the upper AA gun position, the light from the flash would have been able to pass through the gap between the rear edge of the control tower and front edge of the funnel to illuminate the forward port AA director. This can also be verified graphically.

(5) Foremast

The entire foremast can be seen from its top to its base on the walkway between the control tower and the funnel, and this is consistent only with a port quarter view of the Bismarck. This would not be possible in a port bow view because the foremast is directly to the rear of the control tower, and it would be obscured by bridge and AA gun position projections from the control tower.

(6) Funnel

The rear of the funnel is illuminated in NH69726, which is consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard,

(7) Central Searchlights

In a port quarter view, the searchlight projecting from the front of the funnel would be consistent with the forward port searchlight, while the searchlight projecting to the rear of the funnel would be consistent with the starboard rear searchlight. The rounded dark just to the left of the illuminated area at the rear of the funnel is consistent with the location of the rear port searchlight. The forward starboard searchlight would of course be hidden on the other side of the funnel in a port quarter view of the Bismarck.

As with the port bow view of the Bismarck in NH69726, it is impossible to determine with any degree of certainty whether the forward searchlight is covered by its semi-domed shield.

(8) Secondary Armament

The two bright identical patches of light seen amidships at deck level are consistent with the location, size and shape of the center and rear dual 150mm gun turrets and their barbettes. Both of these turrets are outboard on the main deck close to the edge of the side of the hull and are therefore subject to the same level of illumination.

The forward dual 150mm gun turret is not visible in NH69736. This is entirely consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard in which the forward gun turret is far more inboard and therefore shielded from the flash by the surrounding forward superstructure of the ship.

(9) Antiaircraft Armament

The three twin 105mm AA gun mounts located atop the first upper deck are not visible in NH69726. This is consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard in which case the guns would be shielded from the flash by the superstructure of the ship.

(10) Launches

The launches are not visible in NH69726, but this is consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck in which she is firing her rear guns to starboard. The launches are also partially shielded from the flash by the superstructure of the ship.

(11) Main (Rear) Mast

The right half of the rudder indicator box on the main (rear) mast is illuminated in NH9726, which is consistent with the rear surface of the box as seen in a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard.

(12) After Superstructure

Much of the after superstructure remains in the dark, which is consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing to starboard. There is insufficient detail to positively identify any after superstructure components in NH69726, but there appears to be some similarity in that area between NH69726 and other port quarter views of the Bismarck.

(13) After Turrets

The brightness of the flash obscures much of the after turret region, but there is a small dark area at main deck level that is consistent with the location and size of turret Dora. The fact that this area is not illuminated is consistent with the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard and not to port.

(14) Hull

Like the port superstructures, the port side of the hull is not illuminated, which is consistent with the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard.

(15) Surrounding Area

In NH69726, there can be seen a long carpet of white foam extending to the right of the fireball at sea level behind the Bismarck. This is consistent with the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard and creating a white froth on the surface of the water as a result of the tremendous blast effect that whips up the surface of the water for a distance of some 100 yards or more outward from the muzzles of the guns.

c. Other Possibilities

It has been suggested that the Bismarck may have fired over her stern in NH69726, but this is not very likely for the following reasons:

(1) The Bismarck's forward turrets would not have been able to fire if the after turrets had been firing directly over her stern. It is known from other photographs that the Bismarck was probably firing half salvos from her forward guns and rear guns alternately to keep the Prince of Wales under fire every 15 seconds.

(2) The change in inclination of the Bismarck in successive views of the ship is so slight as to preclude the possibility of the Bismarck turning. This slight change in inclination was probably due to the lateral movement of the Prinz Eugen during the period and the Bismarck slowing moving further ahead of the cruiser.

(3) The shape of the patches of reflected light seen in NH69726 would not be consistent with the Bismarck firing over its stern as seen in port bow views of the Bismarck.

4. Conclusions

a. Although certain features of the Bismarck, as seen in NH69726, appear to be consistent with port bow views of the ship, there are many inconsistencies that rule out NH69726 as being a port bow view of the Bismarck. The most significant factor is the lack of illumination over much of the port side area of the Bismarck, which certainly would have been brightly lit up if the Bismarck had been firing to port.

b. Just because a few points of consistency appear to exist between NH69726 and port bow views of the Bismarck, that in itself does not prove that the point. Such occurrences are usually due to ambiguity, where the same structure can appear differently in another perspective, or to coincidence, where two different structures can appear to be in the same location in different aspects of the photograph. Most if not all of the points must be consistent to arrive at the truth.

c. All of the points of comparison between NH69726 and other port quarter views of the Bismarck are consistent with a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing to starboard. Therefore, in all probability, NH69726 is indeed a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing to starboard.

d. It was impossible for the Bismarck to have been firing to starboard since the British force was always to port side of the German squadron, therefore NH69726 had to have been printed in reverse. The true orientation of NH69726 should have been a starboard quarter view of the Bismarck firing to port.

e. Since all six photographs showing the Bismarck on the starboard side of the Prinz Eugen were taken a minute or so apart, they must all have been printed in reverse. There was insufficient time for the Bismarck to have turned around and to have been seen sailing in different directions during that sequence in just two to three minutes.

f. The conclusion that the six photographs in question had been printed in reverse is consistent with the first-hand eyewitness accounts of the battle that make no mention of the Bismarck ever turning to either port or starboard during the engagement with the Prince of Wales. Furthermore, nothing supports the notion of the Bismarck being on the starboard side of the Prinz Eugen, except for the six photographs themselves, which have now been proven to have been printed in reverse.

g. The conclusion, that the six photographs had been printed in reverse and should have shown the Bismarck to be on the port side of the Prinz Eugen, is consistent with the first-hand accounts of the Prinz Eugens two gunnery officers who both describe having the Bismarck in their sights as the flagship moved up on the port side of the Prinz Eugen before the order was given for the Prinz Eugen not to shoot over the Bismarck.

h. The conclusion that the six photographs had been printed in reverse and should have shown the Bismarck on the port side of the Prinz Eugen is consistent with the original battle diagram prepared by Prinz Eugen gunnery officer Paul Schmalenbach and the battle diagrams prepared by noted German naval historians Elfrath & Herzog and Koop & Schmolke.

i. The conclusion that the six photographs had been printed in reverse is consistent with the current views of Prof. Dr. Jürgen Rohwer, who is internationally recognized as being the foremost living authority on the operational history of the Bismarck.

j. The conclusion that the six photographs had been printed in reverse and should have shown the Bismarck on the port side of the Prinz Eugen is consistent with sound logic since most would agree there was no reason for the Bismarck to have ever turned to starboard and sailed around on the starboard side of the Prinz Eugen in clear violation of German naval operating procedures.

Robert J. Winklareth
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Post by Robert J. Winklareth » Sat May 28, 2005 5:47 pm

Hi all,

I tried to post the photographs in question, but it did not take with the procedure that I tried to use. If you would like to have these, I will send them to you by e-mail if you would send me your e-mail address at robjwink@aol.com. They include NH69726 and the port bow view and the port starboard view that I used for comparison purpose.

Best regards.

Bob

Robert J. Winklareth
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Posts: 116
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2004 5:58 pm
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Post by Robert J. Winklareth » Wed Jun 01, 2005 5:06 pm

Hi all,

I apologize for my inept efforts to provide the photographs associated with my write-up on "Autopsy of Photograph NH69726." I didn't want to post the photographs directly since past efforts by others to do so have resulted in the page size being widened and the font size being reduced to the point where the text was hardly readable when printed out.

I tried posting the photographs as part of a Word document, but that didn't work. I finally resorted to e-mail, but as a Word document, it took excessively long to enter and download. AOL would not take the photographs as scanned, and after some experimenting, I found that if I kept the image to below 4.0 MB, it would work with only two-minute loading and down-loading time. By reducing the resolution a bit, I could send photos a little over 5 x 7 inches in size.

I have already sent out the set of three photographs to a number of you whom I have e-mail addresses for. If any others would like to have a set of those photographs for comparison purposes, please send me your e-mail address to robjwink@aol.com.

Best regards.

Bob

marty1
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Posting Photo and Images

Post by marty1 » Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:05 pm

Hello Robert:

I have had a fair amount of luck with posting images to this forum. In addition, I think Jose has cleverly written the forum software such that images are posted to threads as stamp sized images -- click on the stamp and it blows up to full size in a separate window.

I would be more than happy to help you post any images to the forum. A picture tells a thousand words -- particularly in the case of this thread. I am a fence sitter on the topic as a whole, no real opinion either way. But I find your and Antonio's discussions on the subject rather compelling.

If I can help in anyway with image posting don’t hesitate to drop me an email.

martygrace@hotmail.com

Best Regards

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Antonio Bonomi
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Denmark Strait closure statement

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Thu Jun 02, 2005 5:25 pm

Ciao all,

as you can read into this post recently published the debate about the reversed photo theory on the Denmark Strait battle is over and no photos can be considered to be printed reversed starting from May 30th, 2005 on.

http://www.bismarck-class.dk/forum/view ... 4138#14138

I was personally involved of course and I found and saw the whole material myself, plus some witnesses.

I would like to take this occasion, to still underline that from my side it was never a personal problem between me and Mr. Winklareth for personal reasons.

Now finally this debate can be considered to be closed forever and the historical truth is preserved.

Ciao Antonio :D

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Re: Denmark Strait closure statement

Post by Patrick McWilliams » Fri Jun 03, 2005 10:38 am

Hi Antonio,

Many of us will be disappointed that neither you nor John felt able to give any idea of the material in the Bundesarchiv that, you feel, proves the case in your favour.

I understand that copyright, etc., inhibits this material being published but a
few "titbits" would have been nice, at least to whet our appetite for future revelations.

There has been little novel information on this question for some time, therefore a new angle would be welcome.

Regards,

Patrick

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Denmark Strait battle new photos

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Thu Jun 09, 2005 6:13 pm

Ciao Pat and all,

sorry for the late response but I was first in Germany and after in Norway at the Tirpitz Alta Museum opening on KaaFjord ( Alta ) were I left as a donation all my 14 KM battleship models.

Everybody loving Tirpitz must go and see the fantastic exhibition there now available starting from tomorrow :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: .

I came back home last night.


Following is the description of what I have found ( thanking my wife skill searching on my documents while talking to me on my mobile phone from Italy, my ‘’lucky number 7 ’’ and Mr Winklareth Bundesarchiv photo numbers references he sent me ) on May 30th, 2005 between Bundesarchiv and a Private collection.


1 Never published very good quality and size photo showing Bismarck on Prinz Eugen starboard side.
It is by far a better quality photo compared to the one we already know ( those are mainly shadow view of the Bismarck ).
This one is very well taken showing ships full details.
Bismarck main forward turrets are turned abaft to port side just like on the photo Nh 69728 that was taken close to this one but with minor quality from PK Lagemann.
On the photo it is also visible part of the Prinz Eugen starboard side railings.
This photo can be associated to the battle time between 06.04 and 06.05, with Bismarck and Prinz Eugen both sailing a west course.
This is a Bundesarchiv photo.


2 Never published photos with not so good quality, shadow of Bismarck very far away on the Prinz Eugen starboard side.
On one photo Bismarck fires the secondary main guns 3 turrets, on the other the aft main guns.
The 2 photos are separated by some seconds only, at the most 30 seconds.
Those 2 photos battle time are according to my battle map track taken at 06.07 approximately, as Bismarck is very far away from Prinz Eugen which turned south on another of her torpedoes avoidance manoeuvres.
On my battle track those photo are after the Nh 69727 and before the Nh 69729.
Those are private collection photos.

1 Never published photo clearly showing Bismarck firing a salvo to port side while she is coming to re-cross Prinz Eugen wake with a 90 degrees bow approach compared to Prinz Eugen very well visible wake.
Prinz Eugen is sailing from the right to the left of the photo and has just cleared the sea for Bismarck to cross her wake behind the German heavy cruiser.
This photo was taken some seconds ( 15 probably ) after the famous ‘ Flash Effect ‘ photo ( Nh 69730 ) were Prinz Eugen wake is visible too.
This is a Private Collection photo.

Everybody now can make his own evaluations as those photos fits perfectly on my job on the empty spots left and do not require any modification on my current draw battle map.

The first and the last photo are KEY as they are absolutely not reversible and do demonstrate with no more doubts left that Bismarck was on Prinz Eugen starboard side.

Ciao Antonio :D

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Post by sniffa » Sun Jun 12, 2005 4:14 pm

[quote="Robert J. Winklareth"]AUTOPSY OF PHOTOGRAPH NH69726
by Robert J. Winklareth, M.E.


Hi Robert,

I found your post both interesting and persuasive. Could you please comment on your following data and describe why you opted for the "starboard firing" solution.


PART 1 (10) Main (Rear) Mast
The right half of rudder indicator box mounted on the main (rear) mast appears to be illuminated by the flash, which is consistent with a port bow view of the Bismarck firing to port.

PART 2 (11) Main (Rear) Mast
The right half of the rudder indicator box on the main (rear) mast is illuminated in NH9726, which is consistent with the rear surface of the box as seen in a port quarter view of the Bismarck firing her rear guns to starboard.


More generally, what kind of impact do you envisage in the event your proposals (re reversed photos and the like) might one day be generally accepted?


cheers

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Post by joea » Sun Jun 12, 2005 6:40 pm

I suppose you have not seen the results just coming out of an examination of the Bundesarchive...it would seem the debate is pretty much over.

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Post by Patrick McWilliams » Thu Jun 16, 2005 12:31 pm

joea wrote:I suppose you have not seen the results just coming out of an examination of the Bundesarchive...it would seem the debate is pretty much over.
Hi,

I'm not so sure that the debate is over, actually!

The Bismarck and Tirpitz website is showing some interesting discussion on a picture of the Bismarck sailing from left to right (which no one disputes), indicating that she either:
(a) has passed Prinz Eugen on the port side, on a broadly similar course
OR
(b) was sailing away from Prinz Eugen on the starboard quarter, having crossed her stern wake

Option (b) seems strange if my understanding of that part of the battle as proposed by Antonio is correct, in that Bismarck needs to have crossed Prinz Eugen's stern and be about to pass her on her (PE's) starboard side.

Perhaps the most important aspect of that picture is Prinz Eugen's wake. It seems clear to me that we are seeing her bow wave, not a view of the sea forward of the stern (on either side). A stern wake retreats from the stern as you look out and does not travel far up the back of the ship.

Does my humble opinion help (or hinder) the wider debate?

Regards,

Patrick

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Post by Patrick McWilliams » Thu Jun 16, 2005 2:07 pm

Further to my last posting, I have found some evidence that "appears" to show that the picture of Bismarck was taken from the port bow of Prinz Eugen. I choose my words carefully!

Between 7.14 and 7.29 of the Denmark Strait film footage, the bow of the PE is shown and the sea on the port side is churned up remarkably similarly to that shown in the picture in question.

The film can be seen on the HMS Hood website:
http://www.hmshood.com/ship/history/bmhood/film.html

Patrick

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Denmark Strait new photos

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Thu Jun 16, 2005 7:18 pm

Ciao Patrick and all,

few comments from my side.

Can you comment also the other 3 photos out of which :

1 clearly shows Bismarck details and turret guns orientations like Nh 69728 ( at 06.04 ) but with more details visible, no doubts left here, Bismarck is sailing west on Prinz Eugen starboard side with forward turrets turned to port well abaft close to maximum rotation angle.

I can anticipate you that the other 2 are taken at 06.06-07 when Bismarck turned south on my track map and the distance between BS and PG showed on the photo is just perfect.

This last one you saw is taken after Nh 69730, the flash effect one were PG wake is very well visible too ( from Bismarck bow till the right of the photo on the horizon line ).
So it is at 06.08 more or less.

Can you tell me were do you place those 2 photos in your mind and in which sequence on the Winklareth map I suppose you are evaluating as alternative.

Can you tell me were the photographer was according to you to take such a photo with this wake effect.

Can you tell me which course both Bismarck and Prinz Eugen are running on both above photos, .. because if I follow you they will have a collision for sure,... and it did not happened.

Ciao Antonio :D

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Re: Denmark Strait new photos

Post by Patrick McWilliams » Fri Jun 17, 2005 10:39 am

Antonio Bonomi wrote:Ciao Patrick and all,

few comments from my side.

Can you comment also the other 3 photos........
Hi Antonio,

As you'll have seen, my intention in these last two posts was not to cast aspersion on anyone's views of the battle sequence. I was adding my tuppence worth on the "new" picture and its implications for the wider debate, whether that assists your case or not. A posting on the other forum notes that the picture might weaken the Winklareth theory, in view of Bismarck being shown far ahead of Prinz Eugen.

However, let me check something with you: does your last posting suggest that this "new" photo, which came in emails from Robert Winklareth and John Asmusen, is not really "new" at all and adds nothing to the discussion?

The pictures you invite me to comment on have been analysed over and over; I don't think I can add any new angle to them (if you pardon the pun!). A special "Board of Inquiry" would need to be convened to evaulate all the evidence on this particular question.

For the moment, however, let's see how much mileage there is in the "new" photo. It seems to be the only recent new development in the case.

Regards,

Patrick

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New Photos

Post by Antonio Bonomi » Fri Jun 17, 2005 8:17 pm

Ciao Patrick and all,

sorry I think we are not getting each other right, no problems.

I was just asking what is your opinion about the other 3 photos found during my last trip to Germany.

On the post I wrote above on June 9th, 2005 there is a description of 4 photos.

You commented one ( the last ) and not the other 3.

I know you probably never saw them and I do not know if ever you will see them ( the Bundesarchiv one can be easily seen in reality ) but those were described quite well.

So I was just wondering what was your opinion on those, as simple as that.

I have already written my opinion on the mentioned post.

Ciao Antonio :D

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