U-249 CAPTAIN'S WARD ROOM CLOCK WITH KEY - FROM THE FIRST U-BOAT TO SURRENDER AT THE END OF WORLD WAR II
An excellent identified relic, the ward room clock from U-249, taken from the captain's trunk following the vessel's surrender at war's end. The clock, which shows obvious signs of extended use, has a 6" silver face with Arabic numerals, a German eagle with swastika above the letter "M" at left, with serial number "19688 N" at right. The clock lacks the second hand which has been removed, as is often the case. A weatherproof hinged glass cover is present, tthough lacking gasket. The brass case is 3 1/2" deep and is undamaged. The original key which opens the case and winds the clock is also present. The clock remains in operating condition. The first German U-boat to surrender, the U-249 was taken by the Royal Navy off Weymouth, Dorset on May 10, 1945. The pennants are accompanied by copies of documents and photos (the originals accompanying the captain's naval dagger) which were all seized by a British sailor at the time of the ship's surrender. Royal Navy AB Kenneth Rilett was detailed by Capt. N. J. Weir, the the officer overseeing the surrender, to assist in escorting the arrested U-249 crewmen to an internment camp. He then apparently returned to the submarine for salvage duty...and souvenir hunting. At some point in time, Rilett was able to relieve Capt. Kock of his sea chest containing his naval dagger, these pennants, and several other items. Copies of Rilett's orders to attend the vessel's prisoners, his note concerning the dagger, and an Admiralty envelope addressed to Rilett sent by an Admiralty salvage officer in Bath, near Portland, date unknown are included. Interestingly, on March 24, 1945, the vessel was attacked by RAF Mosquitos, with several crew wounded and one fighter shopt down. Kock rescued the downed RAF pilot, Lt. Williams, and left him a prisoner in Bergen where it appears he was executed. Kock would also meet an unhappy end, dying in 1965 at the age of 54 from alcoholism. Provenance: R.N. Seaman Kenneth Rilett; The War Museum. A printed color certificate of provenance and historical report with twenty photos of the sub's history, service and surrender will accompany this lot.