Harry Truman becomes the first president to travel in a submerged “modern” submarine.
The distinction separates his hour-long 450 foot submersion from that of Theodore Roosevelt, who took a few “short-dives” in an archaic torpedo boat” in 1905.
The U-2513 submarine that Truman traveled in was developed by the Germans, but too late to do any real impact in the war and was surrendered to the Allies in May 1945. A U.S. submarine division went to Northern Ireland to learn about the sub, which included having to learn German at the same time.
The sub had technological advances that allowed it to stay submerged for longer periods of time. When the division sailed this sub to the U.S., the crew included eight Germans who served as the original crew on the sub.
The trip earned Truman certification that he was now an “Honorable Member of the Ancient Order of Deep Dunkers.”