Military Review

"Som": as a Russian submarine sank in Sweden

Aland Islands, 2015 year. The video recording of the sunken submarine, made by the deep-sea apparatus of the search group Ocean X Team, was first watched by the Swedish military. “The water is very clean and cold here,” the divers told. “The submarine was preserved in it almost unchanged, and at first we doubted - maybe it is modern”? It turned out quickly: at the depth of 87, the remains of a Russian submarine, but a sunken 99 years ago, really lay there. On the side clearly read: "SOM".

"Som": as a Russian submarine sank in Sweden

During the First and Second World Wars, as well as the Soviet-Finnish, on the Baltic Sea, 46 of Russian and Soviet submarines were killed in campaigns. Most of them have not been found so far.

1905 Sea of ​​Japan

On April 29, while on combat patrol 70 miles south of Vladivostok, sailors spotted a pair of two-pipe Japanese destroyers. Captain "Soma" Prince Vladimir Trubetskoy gave the command to dive and go on the attack. However, the Japanese signalmen noticed the danger. The ships turned around and quickly gained full speed, and when the submarine rose “under the periscope”, they were already out of its reach. And although the fight did not take place, the meeting was memorable: according to the historian fleet Eduard Ignatiev, this was the first collision of a Russian submarine with a real enemy.

1873 − 1901 Limerick - New York

The newborn "Som" bore the name "Fulton", in honor of the designer, who in 1800, created one of the first working models of submarines. On his "Nautilus" for the first time used horizontal rudders and propeller, there was a supply of compressed air and even separate engines for surface and underwater travel.

One of the followers of Robert Fulton was Irish nationalist John Holland who fled to the United States. Apparently, he knew only two passions - the love of mechanics and the hatred of the British, and after impressive news of the first experience of the combat use of submarines, they merged into one. In the submarines, Holland saw a means to crush the invincible Grand Fleet. The compatriots of Holland quickly appreciated this opportunity, and the Fenian Brotherhood became a sponsor of its first developments. With their support, the engineer, one by one, created several models, experimenting with structures and engines. But the main find happened in 1881 year, when Holland placed on the submarine a device for throwing mines, a prototype of torpedo tubes of all subsequent generations. And if the first model of Holland was being teased, they say, “one eccentric from Limerick built himself a floating coffin”, then equipped with three torpedoes “Holland-6” has already been accepted into the service of the US Navy.

But with success came the problem. In 1900, the inventor had a conflict with investors who bought it from Holland Torpedo Boat Co. Holland was squeezed out of the company and, when he resigned, erased the memory of him even from the name, turning the company into Electric Boat Co. The Fulton, built in 1901, was Holland’s ninth and last submarine, which he managed to complete the work on.

The fate of the other submarines of the series was quite ordinary. In the 1918, Beluga, Pescari, Sterlet, and Pike were captured by the Germans in the port of Revel and scrapped. In 1919, the "Salmon" and "Sudak" flooded the British in the outer roadstead of Sevastopol. They were raised by the Expedition of Special Purpose Underwater Operations in the 1932 year, and were also scrapped.

1904 Washington - Kronstadt

From the previous model, the submarine borrowed an enviable stability. Holland refused to vertical immersion due to the water inlet, moving to a fast oblique movement due to the engine and horizontal rudders. The ammunition included three torpedoes, a pneumatic gun for dynamite shells was mounted on the stern.

“Fulton” - not yet “Som” - was built at the shipyards in New Jersey and made the transition to Washington in 1902, perfectly showing itself even during an incredibly strong storm. The US military did not rush to buy a new series, but they became interested in Russia in the submarine.

With the beginning of the Russo-Japanese War, the country's naval department had to drastically change its plans. The Baltic Shipyard began the urgent construction of several heavy submarines of the "Killer Whale" series. The order for the manufacture of lightweight submarines was received by the Nevsky Zavod, which concluded a contract for the purchase of Fulton and the production of a series of its analogues.

Despite US neutrality, the dismantled Fulton disguised as a steam boiler went to Kronstadt, and from there to the shipyard of St. Petersburg. 31 May 1904 of the Year “Fulton” became “Som” and was enrolled in the Siberian Flotilla, and in 1904 — 1907 years it was joined by six new submarines, which also received “fish” names - “Pike”, “Pescari”, “Sterlet” , Beluga, Salmon and Sudak.

1904 Petersburg - Vladivostok

According to the original plan of Vice-Admiral Karl Jessen, a detachment of submarine destroyers was to operate directly in the Japanese ports. But the plans did not come true, the fault of which is the distrust of the naval commanders for the young “underfloor”, and the constructive flaws in the submarines, and just confusion. The task of the submariners was set more modest: "The maintenance of the patrol service, close intelligence and protection of the coast near the fortress."

However, this turned out to be an ordeal. Rolling and lack of ventilation, leakage and humidity are the usual atmosphere of underwater trips of that time. Small, tightly packed volumes did not allow even sleeping places to be organized, and the sailors fell without undressing where they would have to. Onboard mechanisms were unreliable, torpedoes were corroded quickly by corrosion.

Against this background, “Som” stood out for the better. After the war, summing up the actions of Russian submarines, designer Mikhail Beklemishev noted the coordinated actions of his crew and commander, good controllability and accuracy of torpedo firing.

1905 − 1914 Sea of ​​Japan

After the war, “Som” and his brothers continued their service in the Pacific. They were used for training personnel and patrols, and at the same time passed a series of upgrades. Many mechanisms were updated, submarines received more advanced periscopes, and in the 1909 year they were equipped with new engines.

In the same year, 1909, the hereditary Cossack Chrysanf Buguraev entered the St. Petersburg Marine Corps. It is not known what the sea so fascinated him with, but, having thrown a brilliant career of a cavalryman, he became a midshipman. Bugurayev served on the battleship Andrey Pervozvanny, in the year 1910 even managed to sail on the cruiser Aurora, and then entered the Diving Training Unit (UOPP). In 1916, at the time of the absence of Commander Soma, he will perform his duties for the first and last time.

At the very beginning of the First World War, Som managed to visit the Black Sea Fleet, conducting patrols on the distant approaches to the port of Odessa. But in the summer of 1915, the submarine was again delivered to Petersburg - now Petrograd. After assembly and testing, Som moved to its last base, in Mariehamn, the capital of the Finnish Aland Islands.

1915 − 1916 Baltic Sea

Aland Islands block the entrance to the Gulf of Bothnia and allow you to control the North and East Baltic. Mariehamn became the western outpost of the Baltic Fleet, where the St. Nicholas mother ship was located. Russian submarines operated in conjunction with several English ships that were able to force the Baltic Straits blocked by the Germans.

The submarine of John Holland “Fulton” (“Som”) became the basis for the creation of class A submarines (USA), Holland (Great Britain), Som (Russia) and No. 1 (Japan), as well as O-1 submarine (Netherlands) and Hajen (Sweden).

In 1915 — 1916, the Allies carried out joint patrols of the sea, although this theater remained secondary for both Great Britain and Germany. Despite several glorious battles at Gotland and in the Gulf of Riga, the task of the submariners was mainly to prevent the Germans from penetrating the Gulf of Finland and to retain control over the freight traffic.

By this time, “Som” remained in service for more than ten years. Assigned to perform the duties of commander Buguraev had already walked on submarines of this class, but the whole year before that he spent on submarines four times heavier. The new watch "Soma" Boris Sasko was a submariner and did beginners, he graduated from courses UOPP only in April of the same year.

1916 Aland Islands

May 10 “Som” conducted patrols and, being between the Svartklabben lighthouse and Arholma island, noticed the Swedish transport “Ongermanland”. Sweden remained neutral, but continued careful deliveries to Germany. Therefore, the search was a routine procedure, and the captain of the transport prepared to fulfill the requirements of the military, whose periscope followed a parallel course in a light day fog. Suddenly, the submarine turned to the ship and a minute later faced the bow.

Taran at that time was formidable weapons surface ships crashing submarines. "Som" ran into such a blow himself. According to an expert on stories submarine fleet Andrei Nikolaev, Lieutenant Bugurayev could use a non-combat situation for training maneuvering, but misjudged the progress of the ship and the submarine.

In an effort to avoid a collision, he gave the command to urgently dive, but hurt the ship hull. “Som” received an extra push and, driven by the rudders, quickly went to the depths. On 20, the ballast was to be blown through, but due to the high speed of the dive, it could simply waste the supply of compressed air. And if the strike on the steamer did not lead to the appearance of a hole, the Bugurayev, Sasko and 16 sailors "Soma" remained alive until the air ended.

“You should not make categorical conclusions,” adds Andrey Nikolaev. - Command errors are possible, but it is also possible that the accident occurred due to a technical failure. Or maybe the ship made a dangerous change in course. This is only one of the versions, and it will be possible to establish the truth only when “Som” is raised. ”

2015 Aland Islands - Moscow

Divers Dennis Esberg and Peter Lindbergh became really interested in the search for the lost ships after they managed to find the place of the sinking of the schooner Jönköping. All in the same 1916, she carried a load of champagne and cognac to the court of Nicholas II, but was torpedoed by a German submarine. In 1998, the remains of the ship were brought to the surface along with 2400 bottles of real Heidsieck & Co Gut Americain brute. Champagne was excellently preserved and was in great demand at auctions, despite the record high cost. Since then, Esberg, Lindbergh and their associates from the Ocean X Team have continued to work as “archaeologists of the sea”. On account of the team - more than a dozen finds, but they did not come across a whole submarine before.

In 2014, divers worked on the iXplorer, surveying the bottom near the Aland Islands, where, according to the instructions of some sources, something interesting could be found. "We had the coordinates, and we began to search, not even knowing what we can find," said Dennis Esberg. “There are plenty of sunken ships there, but the fact that we got a submarine turned out to be completely unexpected.”

Historians, sailors and museum workers from many countries will be happy to see such an exhibit. However, apparently, Russia should play the first violin in the “Soma” lift. Indeed, the desire to participate in this operation was voiced by several public organizations, government officials, and even a couple of ministries. However, Ocean X Team has not heard anything about it. "From Russia," said Dennis Esberg, "we have not received a single appeal yet."

Series "Som"

Production: Nevsky Shipyard, Elecric Boat Co., 1904 − 1907.

Representatives: "Som" (1901 g.), "Beluga", "Salmon", "Pescari", "Sterlet", "Sudak", "Pike".

Displacement: surface 105 t, scuba 124 t.

Dimensions: 19,8 x 3,6 x 2,9 m.

Immersion depth: 30 m.

Full surface run: 8,5 node, 430 miles (ICE, 160 hp).

Full underwater stroke: 6 knots, 40 miles (electric motor, 70 hp).

Armament: 457 mm TA tube (3 torpedo ammunition).

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  1. bionik
    bionik 12 November 2016 07: 30
    "Som" in the floating dock.
  2. 2 – 0
    2 – 0 12 November 2016 08: 48
    "They will be happy to see at home .....", "Rise ...."! I cannot say for sure, because The Russian Federation is not the Russian Empire, but to declare the place a military burial, Russia can probably, and then no one will stick there.
    The boat has rotted, what is there to raise?
    1. Cat
      Cat 12 November 2016 11: 30
      And yet, this is our history and memory. At the place of our government, I thought about lifting the ship and its restoration, at least for future generations!
      I have the honor.
    2. Serg koma
      Serg koma 13 November 2016 10: 10
      Quote: 2-0
      The boat has rotted, what is there to raise?

      Judging by the video saving the boat is surprisingly good.
      EPRON, at a time when there was no scuba gear, successfully lifted "classmates" (and not only)
      Interesting works of 1932-1933. were the rise of the submarines Sudak, Salmon and Burbot from a depth of 57 m in the region of Sevastopol.
      I do not think that the amount of money spent (if without the "cut") will be higher than the cost of a unique museum piece. Judging by the video, it lies on an even keel, no serious damage is noticeable.
      Regarding the crew - reburial at home.

      PS As version. After the "Swede" stalled the course (and possibly back up for greater efficiency), the p / l could not correctly calculate the position of the surface vessel in the submerged position.
      1. Serg koma
        Serg koma 13 November 2016 12: 56
        COM in the Far East
      2. 2 – 0
        2 – 0 13 November 2016 20: 24
        This is at "Soma" at the bottom, save, maybe very good. The metal is corroded. When lifted, the boat will either crumble into dust, or quickly collapse in the air.

        Regarding the restoration - it’s easier to build a new one (my personal opinion).
  3. The comment was deleted.
  4. Amurets
    Amurets 12 November 2016 10: 10
    Despite the declared neutrality by the United States, the disassembled Fulton, disguised as a steam boiler, went to Kronstadt, and from there to the shipyards of St. Petersburg. On May 31, 1904, Fulton became Som and was credited to the Siberian Flotilla.
    It turns out that not only in the USSR they knew how to saw with a file, but also in the USA.
    But with success came the problem. In 1900, the inventor had a conflict with investors who bought it from Holland Torpedo Boat Co. Holland was squeezed out of the company and, when he resigned, erased the memory of him even from the name, turning the company into Electric Boat Co. The Fulton, built in 1901, was Holland’s ninth and last submarine, which he managed to complete the work on.

    Then I don’t understand why the boats of the AG 602 project were called the Holland system and passed not only the WWII but also WWII in Russia and then to the USSR on the Black Sea, if, as the author writes, Fulton (Som) was the last boat of Nolland.
  5. Simpsonian
    Simpsonian 12 November 2016 11: 08
    "SUDDENLY" the Swede just rammed the submarine when she was diving, which is what the "neutral" Swedes are generally proud of

    such a ram, with the same consequences, was not alone

    tell the aftor about it, suddenly he didn’t know
    1. kig
      kig 12 November 2016 13: 31
      Let's not invent versions, besides there are only two of them: deliberate ramming or collision during unsuccessful maneuvering. If you know the facts, then please send them to the studio. The official information is as follows:
      On May 10, 1916, at 4 a.m., the Som submarine, which patrolled in the Åland Sea, died in an underwater collision with the Swedish steamer Ongermanland [sv]. A collision occurred between the lighthouse Svartklubben [sv] and the island of Archholm [sv]. As the captain of the ship testified, he noticed a periscope, rising 1 m above the water, at a distance of 150 m. The boat went in a parallel course, and then turned to the ship. Deciding that they wanted to inspect the ship, the captain stalled. The periscope suddenly disappeared under the water, and the boat hit a steamboat in the underwater part. No longer the boat showed up. Together with the boat, its combat crew also died - 2 officers and 16 lower ranks. The boat was commanded by 25-year-old lieutenant Khrisanf Konstantinovich Buguraev.
      According to another version, the submarine was deliberately rammed by a Swedish ship in order to avoid cargo screening.
      1. Simpsonian
        Simpsonian 12 November 2016 13: 42
        let's not ... the Swedes are openly proud of these episodes (the ship was empty), and the submarines do not ram themselves yes
        1. kig
          kig 13 November 2016 02: 46
          An example of Swedish pride in these episodes, please. If they are "openly proud," then it is not hard to find them. Look forward to.
          1. Simpsonian
            Simpsonian 13 November 2016 03: 00
            Well, if it’s easy to find from, it’s easy to find it yourself ...
            for example, they were openly proud when discussing this topic on YouTube
      2. Simpsonian
        Simpsonian 12 November 2016 13: 46
        in spite of the fact that all the warring parties did the same searches (and the Germans later switched to an unlimited submarine war in general) they were very unhappy with the Russian searches in the WWI
        in WWII, neutral Swedish Navy attacked Soviet submarines with depth charges as they tried to stoke German vehicles carrying Swedish iron ore to the Reich
        1. kig
          kig 13 November 2016 02: 58
          "Destroy all transports and enemy warships, except
          warships of the Swedish navy, whose attacks are prohibited "(Chronicle of military
          BF actions for 1941 and 1942 M .: Military Publishing, 1947.).
          As a result, it is already the first of the Sch-317 submarines that approached the Swedish thermostats
          successively sank the Finnish transport first and damaged Danish, and
          then off the east coast of about. Eland sunk first during the war
          Swedish transport "Ada Gorton" (2405 brt), and it happened on June 22, 1942
          on July, the Sch-317 attacked the Swedish Galleon transport to no avail and was counterattacked by the Swedish destroyer Ehrensheld.
          1. Simpsonian
            Simpsonian 13 November 2016 03: 31
            Perhaps if it was night and the flag could not be considered

            And about the fact that when there is war, the enemy’s coast is blocked, have you ever heard?

            It seems that you do not need to look for anything - of those who are proud of themselves ...
            1. kig
              kig 15 November 2016 06: 56
              This is to say that there was a war on land and at sea, and the Swedish Navy was fulfilling the task of protecting its shipping. Just like our Navy, it performed the task of disrupting enemy shipping. About the flag quite rightly noticed - and not visible, and FIG knows who this flag actually dressed. Also, the destroyer: the noise of propellers is heard, the trail of a torpedo is visible, and whose boat it is - Soviet, English, Polish or even German - we will figure it out later.

              And you, therefore, did not find examples of pride ...
              1. Simpsonian
                Simpsonian 15 November 2016 16: 46
                If you understand right away (and this is not difficult), at that time only Soviet and German could attack shipping, only the Soviet had a reason.

                Swedes in the Second World War did not just escort German ships carrying Swedish iron ore, they purposefully engaged in anti-submarine warfare, fought on the Finnish front with more divisions (besides volunteers in the SS) and even shot down Soviet air forces under their Swedish identification marks (as well as not under their own). over Finland, until in 1944 the government quarter of Stockholm was thoroughly bombed by them (which they very much do not like to mention on the contrary, although it would seem ...)

                examples of their pride means not looking, although it was written where.
                1. kig
                  kig 19 November 2016 03: 46
                  Tell me where, I’ll look for myself, it’s interesting
                  1. kig
                    kig 19 November 2016 04: 05
                    and in general I don’t understand something, what are we arguing about?
                  2. Simpsonian
                    Simpsonian 20 November 2016 23: 54
                    Quote: kig
                    for example, they were openly proud when discussing this topic on YouTube
  6. beeper
    beeper 12 November 2016 15: 19
    The version about a sudden "self-ramming" somehow sounds unconvincing (well, I don't believe that the submarine commander was such a layman as the Swedes are trying to imagine him!) "- more like a lie to save from" snuffles (and probably not interested in inspecting the cargo and list of passengers) "and insidious" neutrals "?!
    As the unforgettable Vladimir Semyonovich sang - "... forward 500, back 500 ..", and the survivor, of course, will present his "true version" ...
    Threat The tonnage of the submarine found is very small and remains quite good, judging by the reviews and videos (the photo at the beginning of the article is not "Som") on the Web, but how torpedoes will behave in the event of a probable rise and whether Russia needs it, because this is the place of a military burial-inside the dead Russian crew ?!
    1. DimerVladimer
      DimerVladimer 14 November 2016 12: 50
      Quote: pishchak
      The version about a sudden "self-ramming" somehow sounds unconvincing (well, I don't believe that the submarine commander was such a layman as the Swedes are trying to imagine him!) "- more like a lie to save from" snuffles (and probably not interested in inspecting the cargo and list of passengers) "and insidious" neutrals "?!

      All things are possible.
      English submariners about the Russian submarine during the WWII (and WWII) were not of a very high opinion.
      To strengthen the actions of submarines, the British deployed submarine forces to the Baltic, in agreement with the tsarist government. There are appropriate assessments of actions and memories.
      1. Simpsonian
        Simpsonian 15 November 2016 16: 52
        Is it possible that this steering wheel jammed on the steamer? Or does his Swedish captain have a head?

        English submariners of even lower opinion about the German submarine, and so far.

        PS. even used trap vessels
      2. Jääkorppi
        Jääkorppi 12 December 2016 22: 19
        Let the drowned British sailors from the Vittoria destroyer tell about the poor crew of the Russian submariners !!
  7. Alf
    Alf 12 November 2016 17: 07
    Here! Even then, the bloody Russians hatched plans to capture peaceful Sweden. Even then, Russian submarines plowed the coast of Sweden. So, the Swedes are right who saw Russian submarines under their coast in 2015, 14. laughing
    1. Amurets
      Amurets 13 November 2016 00: 38
      Quote: Alf
      Here! Even then, the bloody Russians hatched plans to capture peaceful Sweden. Even then, Russian submarines plowed the coast of Sweden. So, the Swedes are right who saw Russian submarines under their coast in 2015, 14. laughing

      And not only surfed the coast of Sweden. Submarine Dmitry Donskoy surfaced near the Royal Palace in Stockholm. Three witnesses did not undergo a medical examination for the presence of alcohol in their blood, but they say they smelled strongly of "Stolichnaya and Belomor."
  8. Jääkorppi
    Jääkorppi 12 December 2016 22: 16
    It’s good to raise a boat !! Of course a military burial place! But one could betray the victims of the past war to their native land and erect a monument to sailors - heroes of the First World War! And from the boat would be a chic museum. And there is also an opinion, and it seems to me more thoroughly that the ship carrying the cargo for Germany in violation of the blockade deliberately rammed our boat !!