Every year, millions of Oslo vehicles roll over these nondescript metal plates. Put down by workers to cover road construction, they lay undignified and unnoticed. But, there is history in these plates. They belong to Tirpitz.

Tirpitz sunk on November 12, 1944, an event brilliantly described last week by UltimaRatioReg. After the war, the Lonely Queen of the North was cut up and sold as scrap. A few of her armor plates were sold to the Norwegian Road Authority, who to this day use them in Oslo as temporary road surface. It is an anonymous but noble end to an august vessel.

Posted by Christopher Albon in History, Navy

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  • Chris, thanks for the post… I first saw it in the RSS feed and thought for sure it was going to discuss the sinking of a vessel on the street. That would have been interesting. None the less thanks for the information.

  • Matthew Lang

    You have to hand it to the Europeans, they can and will recycle everything!

  • UltimaRatioReg

    In the late 1990s, I served with a Norwegian LtCol named Faret, who described in detail the vessel being cut up into the 1960s, and that once these “Tirpitz plates” were everywhere on Norway’s streets.

    I loved the story so much, I am now in the habit of calling the steel plates on our various New England road projects “Tirpitz plates”. A perfect opportunity to tell the story whenever someone asks!

  • Abu Thaar

    Seems entirely appropriate. I’m not terribly sentimental about an enemy ship. An Iowa would be different.