Photos taken from various sources
U 858 arrived fully loaded with torpedoes and weapons. It was kept out to sea until these could be safely off load.
858 was the first enemy vessel to surrender in U.S. waters since the war of 1812. Operating under Group Seewolf .
Five U-Boats were sent on a mission to attack shipping off U.S. coast attempting to catch America off guard and put Germany in a position to negotiate a truce and avoid an unconditional surrender. 858 was the first of the five U-boats to surrender to the U.S. shortly after Germany surrendered.
The other four U-boats surrendered over next several days. 858 was instructed to meet U.S. Navy off coast. First met by destroyers USS Carter and Miur then duty was handed over to destroyers USS Pillsbury and Pope who escorted 858 off coast on New Jersey. Reason for surrender location is unknown, possibly because it was closer to DC and high-ranking officials and news media arriving to make the surrender a big deal. The other four
U-Boats were taken to New London, Connecticut to the U.S. Navy sub base. Crew was off loaded onto Navy boats and brought to Fort Miles. 858 was tied up at the Lewes breakwater to avoid the possibility of the boat being sabotaged due to the fact it still had a full load of torpedoes on board. After the torpedoes were disarmed by Marine armorers the boat was transferred to Philadelphia Navy Yard.
Since the first Fort Miles event around 2005 there has been a mock surrender and search like it would have been on the fishing pier at Fort Miles.
Our volunteers have gone to great lengths to recapture the seriousness of this event
Not a happy camper to surrender.
See the link for a video on the Surrender. This will be re enacted at Fort Miles this 23 April 2022.
Over the years our volunteers have donned the enemy uniforms so that the public and guests can at least get a flavour of what happened 14 May 1845