SMS Baden (1915)

Baden, probably running trials in late 1916. Imperial German Navy photo, now in the public domain.

Ship Class
Laid Down

SMS Baden was the last dreadnought completed for the Kaiser's Navy. Laid down in 1913, work on Baden was delayed by the outbreak of World War I, and resources were diverted to complete other ships first, including the battlecruiser SMS Lützow. Lützow was sunk in the Battle of Jutland, and most of her surviving crew were reassigned to Baden. Commissioned in 1917, Baden missed the Battle of Jutland, and saw no action during World War I, despite being assigned as the flagship of Admiral Franz von Hipper. She was handed over to the Royal Navy at the end of the War. Baden's crew attempted to scuttle her with the rest of the interred German fleet on 21 June, 1919, but she was beached by the Royal Navy, and salvaged soon after. Baden was used as a target ship in 1921, and scuttled in 600 feet of water that August.

Bonus Photos

SMS Baden (right) and SMS Frankfurt (left) undergoing salvage work at Scapa Flow in late 1919. Photo in the collections of the Imperial War Museums.

Bonus Information

Fun Fact: Baden was the only German capital ship not successfully scuttled in June, 1919, partly due to the efforts of then-Lieutennant Commander Bruce Fraser, who led a boarding party to secure the ship and run her aground. Fraser would continue frustrating German capital ships during World War II.