Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The End of the Graf Spee

I was looking at the map in yesterday's post about World War 2 Shipwrecks and my eye was drawn to the places on the map that seemed to have no shipwrecks marked.

South coast of Australia? West cost of South America? I'm no real student of naval history but those seemed plausible.

The southern part of the Atlantic coast of South America? Argentina, Uruguay, southern Brazil? Wait a minute.  What about the Battle of the River Plate? My Dad took me to see the movie back in the 1950s. That's one piece of naval history I do know. Anthony Quayle led a force of three Royal Navy cruisers against the German pocket battleship Graf Spee, which ended up with the Graf Spee being scuttled in the estuary of the River Plate off Montevideo on 17 December 1939.

I was reminded of it only the other day reading Brent Burrows' blog because he was just entering the Rio de la Plata (as it should be called) on his way to Buenos Aires.

Yes there was definitely a WW2 shipwreck down there between Uruguay and Argentina that's not on the map, although it sounds as if a salvage operation to raise the wreck was started in 2004.

Here is the full story of the Battle of the River Plate on Wikipedia.

And here is the video...

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