The British came and blew up the bunker and the roof partially collapsed, trapping the boats. Someone made an attempt to scrap them in the ’40s-’50s, but it was too dangerous, so they stayed somewhat intact until the ’90s. The German govt. finally filled the bunker with gravel and concrete and buried the boats, then turned the area into aparking lot.
Thank God a bunch of those XXIs didn’t get loose during the war. It may have prolonged the slaughter until the atomic bomb could have been brought to bear against Germany. They managed to get one on combat patrol right at the end, but were ordered to stop hostilities and they never launched an attack.
These boats were virtually missing until 1985 when the boats were discovered through research by Jak P Mallmann-Showell, Wolfgang Hirschfeld and Walter Cloots in the mostly demolished Elbe II U-boat bunker in Hamburg. The Elbe II bunker is located on the southern bank of the Elbe river at the Vulkanhafen. This area is within the Freeport of Hamburg and to access it you should have to present your passport.
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