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This is something I have had for a while. It says, on the face that it is a 'Hydraulik-Manometer' manufactured by Schäffer & Budenberg, G.m.b.H in Magdeburg-Buckau. It is heave and made of brass. Around the rim is stamped "S.M.S. Ostfriesland. Flagship in the battle of Jutland May 31, 1916. Brought to U.S. August 1920."

In the picture I left it open because the glass is a bit dusty and it is hard to see through the grating in front of the glass anyway.
 

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Now that is really neat. You do know that Ostfriesland was the BB sunk by Billy Mitchell's bombers, with the main damage apparently being the mining effect of large bombs that near-missed, I presume? You have a bit of history there, Helmer.
 

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Hi Clyde.

Indeed, assuming the words stamped around the edge are real it really is pretty neat. My grandfather was born in 1900 in the part of Germany this ship was named for (Ostfriesland - East Frisia) and was quite proud of this ship and the role it played in history before Billy Mitchell got to it, or so my father tells me.

The woman I got it from claimed it had been in the bottom of a trunk her grandfather, who had been in the navy in WWI, left behind when he died. I have no particular reason to doubt her but, of course, a story is just a story.

I guess I'd assume that when the US took the ship over they probably had to change over all the gauges, since in 1920 I doubt most sailors in the US were well versed in metric measurements. I wonder if maybe they didn't sell off the original gauges as souvenirs or maybe this guy just happened to be in the right place to grab one and have someone stamp it with the little note about its history.
 

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Actually, the USN probably stripped out things like that since they were not going to (and did not) operate the ship after it went to them as a war prize. I don't know if it was transferred under its own steam or was towed, but once the USN got it, they examined it and then expended it in tests that included bombing. Mitchell violated the test protocols and plans during his attacks, by the way. Much drama, little information 9or at least far less than was intended to be acquired).
 

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Actually, the USN probably stripped out things like that since they were not going to (and did not) operate the ship after it went to them as a war prize. I don't know if it was transferred under its own steam or was towed, but once the USN got it, they examined it and then expended it in tests that included bombing. Mitchell violated the test protocols and plans during his attacks, by the way. Much drama, little information 9or at least far less than was intended to be acquired).
I read somewhere that she had sailed to NY after being handed over, which I assumed meant under her own power. I could very well be wrong, though.
 

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I checked what I have to see if it says how the transAtlantic voyage was accomplished following surrender as reparations in 1919, but nothing is said. If I had to guess, I'd vote for sailed on her own steam, with a German voyage crew hired or assigned and USN navigating crew and enough seamen to insure nobody got any ideas.

The USN would have almost certainly been able to find sufficient German speakers in its ranks to read German-marked instruments, by the way. Foreign-born seamen in the USN were very common at the time, and a lot of Americans were from areas settled by German immigrants with the language still in use (Milwaukee, St. Louis, parts of Central Texas, just as some examples). One of them reached high rank later on (Chester William Nimitz of Fredericksburg, TX).
 
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