One of two Type IA submarines, U-26 was commissioned 6 May, 1936. Despite poor handling, she was deployed near Spain during its Civil War, but mainly served in a training and propaganda role. She was brought into front line service in 1940, due to a shortage of U-boats, and conducted six war patrols. Between laying minefields and her torpedoes, U-26 sank eleven ships, and badly damaged the corvette HMS Kittiwake and another merchant ship. Her luck ran out on 1 July, 1940, when she was attacked off Ireland by a Short Sutherland flying boat, and the corvette HMS Gladiolus. U-26 was scuttled by her crew, but all of them initially survived. However, six of them were later killed when a German bomber accidentally jettisoned its bombs over a prisoner of war camp they were being held in.