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Old 11-03-2015, 02:33 PM   #27
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The Attack on Orleans was a naval and air action during World War I which took place on 21 July 1918. A German U-boat opened fire on the American town of Orleans, Massachusetts, and several merchant vessels nearby. A tugboat was sunk, but shells fired in the direction of the town landed harmlessly in a marsh and on a beach.

On the morning of 21 July 1918 – during the last year of the First World War – the German submarine U-156, Captained by Richard Feldt, surfaced three miles off the coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and began to shell the tugboat "Perth Amboy" and the four barges in her tow. A handful of the shells fired by the U-boat’s two deck guns struck Nauset Beach, giving the town of Orleans the distinction of being the first, and only, spot in the United States to receive fire from the enemy during the First World War.

Coming to Cape Cod’s defense was the United States Life-Saving Service and the fledgling air arm of the United States Navy. The lifesavers, who were based at Station No. 40, launched a surfboat under heavy enemy shellfire and rowed in the direction of the thirty-two sailors trapped aboard the tug and barges. Meanwhile, HS-1L flying boats and R-9 seaplanes were dispatched from the Chatham Naval Air Station and dive-bombed the enemy raider with payloads of TNT. It was the first time in history that American aviators engaged an enemy vessel in the western Atlantic.

Today, a sign celebrates the historic engagement above the beach. It reads:

"Three miles offshore, in the direction of the arrow, was the scene of attack of a German submarine on a tug and barges July 21, 1918. Several shells struck the beach. This is the only section of the United States’ coast shelled by the enemy during World War I."

Captain Phillip Eaton, the commander of the Chatham Naval Air Station. United States Coast Guard.

Captain Eaton knew his station was short on planes so he decided to take matters into his own hands. Forty-five minutes after the U-156’s attack began, Captain Eaton took off in an R-9 seaplane in an effort to personally sink the German raider.

2017 article..

After a 30 career, Phillip Eaton retired as a rear admiral in 1946 and was laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery in 1958.

This could be a R6L or a R9...

Attached Images
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File Type: jpg 11811565_948732785191125_6956532800096057619_n.jpg (15.7 KB, 36 views)
File Type: jpg attackonorleans-660x250.jpg (43.8 KB, 37 views)
File Type: jpg R6L.jpg (87.0 KB, 29 views)
File Type: jpg phil-eaton_ww1.jpg (49.9 KB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg phil-eaton_anc.jpg (90.4 KB, 7 views)

Last edited by TCT1911; 01-09-2018 at 10:22 AM.
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