SS Olterra being used as an undercover base for manned torpedoes



SS Olterra being used as an undercover base for manned torpedoes


Two manned torpedoes are exiting from a hidden hatch in the hull of the Italian auxiliary ship Olterra. Each torpedo has two figures sitting on it wearing diving suits and equipment.

Label reads “74”; signed by the authors; caption reads “1940. ALGESIRAS. L’Olterra del comandante D. Amoretti, una nave cisterna da 5000 to affondata dal suo equipaggio, davanti a Gibilterra, dalla stiva della petroiera appositamente attrezzata, partirono il 7 Dicembre 1942 i famosi maiali della squadriglia dell’Orsa Maggiore che violarono la munitissma piazzaforte di Gibilterra.

Caption translates as: “1940 – Algeciras. The Olterra, captained by D. Amoretti was a tanker 5,000 gross register tonnage tanker, sunk by its crew in front of Gibraltar. From the cargo hold of the tanker, which had been specifically fitted, on the 7 December 1942, departed the famous slow-moving torpedoes of the ‘Ursa Major’ squadron. They violated the heavily defended stronghold of Gibraltar.

Temporal Coverage

Spatial Coverage




One tempera on paper, pasted on mount board


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Angiolino Filiputti, “SS Olterra being used as an undercover base for manned torpedoes,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed May 29, 2024,

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