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SS Kronprinz Wilhelm

The SS Kronprinz Wilhelm of North German Lloyd (NGL) sailed in the early 1900's and served on both sides during WWI. 

RMS Queen Mary steam ship ocean liner sailing at sea
RMS Queen Mary steamship ocean liner

One of the German Four Flyers

Capturing the Blue Riband several times throughout her career, the Kronprinz Wilhelm was a formidable and fast ship.

World War One Mystery Ship

Using her size and speed, the SS Kronprinz Wilhelm started WWI as an auxiliary cruiser sinking countless Allied ships without any loss of life. After exhausting her supplies, the ship headed to the nearest neutral port to refuel with coal and supplies. After landing in Newport News, VA, the United States interned the ship for their upcoming war effort.

On the April 11, 1915 the crew laid anchor off the coast of Newport News where American authorities boarded the ship and claimed it for the US, renaming it the USS Von Steuben.

RMS Queen Mary RMS Queen Elizabeth SS Normandie docked together in NYC
RMS Queen Mary ocean liner steamship troop transport sydney WWII
USS Von Steuben

One of the ways the Allied Forces won WWII was the success of the troop transport ships successfully carrying allied forces between theaters. The Queen Mary carried hundreds of thousands of soldiers safely throughout the war.

The ship was painted in a dazzle pattern in order to help protect the ships from submarine attack by confusing the periscope sight rather than recognizing a ship silhouette.

RMS Queen Mary Starboard Deck ocean liner steam ship

Continuing as a troop transport the Von Steuben, the ship was eventually scrapped in 1923 without much fanfare.

Life after WWI

SS Kronprinz Wilhelm Ship Facts

SS Kronprinz Wilhelm
14,908 GRT
Number of Decks:
Cruising Speed:
23.09 Knots (26.6 mph or 42.9 km/hr)
AG Vulcan, Stettin Germany
Port of Registry:
Maiden Voyage:
September 17, 1901
Years in Service:
Current Status:
Scrapped in 1923
SS Kronprinz Wilhelm elevation
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