Lot 3500

A Zeppelin Commemorative Plate

Orders & Military Collectibles until 1918 | A90m | Live auction | 109 Lots


White porcelain with blue crown imprint, painted at top a gold circle with black "Kplt L3 Fritz", centre with L3 zeppelin and battleship at sea, lower rim dedication "Einem siegreichen neuen Jahr entgegen ! Nordholz, 3.12.1914", (tr. "Towards a victorious new year! Nordholz, Dec. 3, 1914"). Manufacturer markings on reverse for "Porzellanfabrik Th. Rosenthal & Co. A.G. Selb. i. Bayern". Diameter ca. 25 cm.
Zeppelin L 3 was the German Imperial Navy's third airship. The factory designation was LZ 24 (Luftschiff Zeppelin 24). When World War I started, L 3 was the only airship in the navy. L 1 and L 2 both crashed in the fall of 1913. Commanding officer: Kptlt. Fritz. Even though L 3 was far from ideal for naval operations, its history was typical for the navy usage of Zeppelins during the First World War. On August 11, 1914, L 3 made a successful reconnaissance mission off the Dutch coast identifying Dutch battleships. It was the first time a Zeppelin carried out a specified mission during war. Shortly afterwards L 3 made another historical mission. On August 17 the airship conducted a long-range reconnaissance flight from Fuhlsbüttel past Hanstholm on the Danish west coast and on to Ryvingen in Norway. A flight of 300 nautical miles. After 24 reconnaissance missions over the North Sea, L 3 participated in the first raid on England on 19 January 1915. On 17 February 1915 abandoned after a forced landing in Denmark, caused by engine failure compounded by strong headwinds and insufficient fuel. The wind was so strong it blew the airship, now unmanned but with engines still running, out to sea.

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