Friday, 9 September 2016

Wilhelm Schramm

9th September 1916 saw the award of the Victoria Cross to William Leefe Robinson, an RFC pilot who shot down the first "Zeppelin" using newly designed bullets for dealing with the "baby killers" of WW1 propaganda. Leefe Robinson had previously been involved in the defensive operations against the Zeppelin raids supporting the Easter Rising.

The "Zeppelin" shot down was SL-11 - technically not a Zeppelin. All 16 crew were killed.

The twist in the tale is that the Captain of this airship, Wilhelm Emile Ludwig Schramm, was born in Old Charlton, Kent in December 1885, the son of Otto Schramm of 9 Victoria Road, Old Charlton.

Otto Schramm died in 1900 and it appears that Wilhelm then went to Germany where he eventually joined the German Army and later became commander of SL-11.

The crew of the SL-11 were buried in Potters Bar and a film clip of the funeral is available online.

They were moved to Cannock Chase in 1962 and Wilhelm Schramm is oddly noted on the CWGC site as being German Navy.

Leefe Robinson was later captured by the Germans and badly treated. He died shortly after his release in 1918.

No thanks to the Great War Forum. Sadly, no longer a forum worth visiting for WW1 research.

No comments:

Post a Comment