This first volume addresses both building and fitting-out of the largest and most powerful European
battleship of WWII. For this purpose, hitherto unpublished photographic material in high quality and
quantity illustrates the life of this once proud and mighty warship.
After years of research and the evaluation of historic documents – such as the numerous war diaries of
ships and other administrative bodies involved – nearly the entire range of photos could be associated
to certain locations and time frames. Therefore the photos are chronologically arranged as if viewed in
a time-lapse; from the ship’s launch in Wilhelmshaven, its fitting-out and transfer to the Baltic Sea via
the narrow Kaiser-Wilhelm-Kanal (Kiel Canal) and Hitler’s visit and inspection of the ship in Gdynia
(renamed Gotenhafen by the occupying Germans).
The photos are supplemented by detailed technical information and perspective illustrations depicting
individual stages of fitting-out and camouflage scheme, plus maps showing the Wilhelmshaven and
Gotenhafen port facilities and transfer routes in between. Furthermore, photos of past and present are
shown side-by-side for comparison purposes in order to identify the individual berths and anchorages
of the largest German battleship in service.
Despite having been a German warship, the battleship TIRPITZ – and of course her famous sistership
BISMARCK – still receives worldwide attention today. For this reason the German texts and captions
are accompanied by their respective English translations to make this historic period of the German
Kriegsmarine linguistically applicable to non-German readers.