Bismarck's sailors signed her name into Atlantic waters with their blood.
"Schiff manoverierunfahig. Wir kampfen is zur letzten Granate. Es lebe der Deutschland, es lebe der fuehrer." (26 May 1941, 23.40 PM)
"Wir kaempfen bis zum letzten im glauben an sie mein fuehrer, und im felsenfesten vertrauen auf Deutschlands sieg. Flottenchef." (27 May 1941, 00.01 AM)
(Admiral Gunther Lutjens. Chief Commander of DKM Bismarck)
On June 8, 1989, about 48 years after her sinking, the wreck of the legendary battleship Bismarck was found by an expedition lead by Robert D. Ballard, who also discovered the sunken remains of another famous ship, S.S. Titanic. Now the wreck is sleeping at 4800 meters deep on the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, upright and as one piece, but except a piece of her stern.
All of her main 380mm. gunhouses are gone, the funnel and command tower have also dissappeared, but what is left of the battleship is surprisingly intact. After two hours of heavy shellfire from close range, this is a quite remarkable condition which shows the incredible strength of Bismarck. Now she rests on the bottom of sea, 600 miles off the coast of France and St. Nazaire port, the place which she could never reach.
When Bismarck left Gotenhafen at 18 May, 1941, her death journey began. Bismarck steamed to her grave, and she would never return. But the death journey of the battleship caused her to be a legend. Putting up a gallant fight against all the impossible odds as Admiral John Tovey said (after the final battle). Bismarck fought to the last shell.
Bismarck was one of the last representatives of an expired elegant era. Maybe her dramatic story was something identical to mythological Germen hero Siegfried.
This illustration shows the damage on Bismarck. She remained in one piece, but lost a piece of stern all her main turrets. The gunhouses may be seperated from the ship, when capsized and sank. All these show the incredible strength and quality of the legendary battleship.
These undersea photographs show some parts of the sunken battleship (by R. Ballard). The left picture is a crane basement and the right one is an anchor capstan.