Alfred Saalwächter

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Vizeadmiral Säalwachter

Alfred Säalwachter (born on January, 10 1883 in Neusalz an der Oder, Germany) is a German naval officer.


Saalwächter was born in Neusalz an der Oder, Prussian Silesia, as the son of a factory manager. He entered the Kaiserliche Marine as a Seekadett on 10 April 1901, and was trained on the SMS Moltke and the SMS Hertha. On 29 September 1904 he was promoted to Leutnant zur See.

Saalwächter then served with Bordkommando units, first with the 2. Matrosen-Division, then on the SMS Hessen with the 2. Werft-Division. He was promoted to Oberleutnant zur See on 10 March 1906; until 1908, he served with the 2. Torpedo-Division as adjutant to the I. Abteilung. Saalwächter also served on the SMS Gneisenau.

Saalwächter served on the SMS Hannover in 1910 and later on the SMS Westfalen as Flaggleutnant to Vice Admiral Hugo von Pohl, commander of the I. Marine-Geschwader. Saalwächter was promoted to Kapitänleutnant on 10 April 1911 and joined the admiralty in Berlin. He remained in the admiralty until 1915, with his last position there being head of the operations department. In 1912 he received the Order of the Red Eagle.

On 31 March 1915 during the Weltkrieg, Saalwächter became Flaggleutnant on the SMS Friedrich der Grosse, the flagship of the High Seas Fleet. In February 1916 he entered the U-boat service. After graduating from submarine school, he commanded U 25, U 46, and U 94 from September 1916 to March 1918. He was awarded for his success with the Iron Cross 1st Class and the Knight's Cross of the House Order of Hohenzollern. In 1920 Saalwächter was named a Korvettenkapitän. He also served on the Braunschweig as an admiralty officer.

On 1 October 1926 he became commander of the light cruiser SMS Amazone who saw combat in the Yellow Sea, and, a year later, Fregattenkapitän in command of the battleship Schlesien. Promoted to Kapitän zur See on 15 October 1928, Saalwächter was chief of staff for Vice Admiral Iwan Oldekop for two years. On 1 October 1932 he became a Konteradmiral and head of the Marinewehrabteilung. On 2 October 1933 Saalwächter was named inspector for naval instruction. During the following five years he had a strong influence on the development of the young officer corps. He was promoted to Vizeadmiral on 1 April 1935.

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