Military Review

Destruction of the destroyer "Wrathful"

45
On the night of June 22-23, simultaneously with the operation of laying mines at the entrance to the Gulf of Finland, a detachment of light forces under the command of Captain Second Rank Ivan Svyatov left through the Irbensky Strait. The task of the detachment was to provide long-range cover for laying mines at the central mine-artillery position. The group included a cruiser "Maksim Gorky" and three destroyers of the same type - "Guarding", "Proud"and "Angry" under the command of the captain of the second rank Maxim Ustinov.



Destroyer "Wrathful"

Destroyer "Angry" was the lead ship in the generally successful series of Project 7, built in 1936-1938. With a displacement of 1670 tons, it carried strong artillery, torpedo and anti-submarine weapons. The main caliber artillery consisted of four 130 mm B-13-I guns. It was supplemented by two universal guns of 76 mm caliber of the 34-K type, two semi-automatic anti-aircraft guns 45 mm of the 21-K type and two anti-aircraft machine guns DShK. Torpedo armament consisted of two three-tube torpedo tubes 533 mm type 39-Yu. To combat enemy submarines, the destroyer carried 25 depth charges and could take on board 60–65 mines.

Carrying out the assigned task, the detachment of light forces maneuvered west of the destroyer group, north of the island of Hiiumaa, approximately abeam Cape Tahkuna. To protect against enemy mines, the ships deployed paravan trawls, and to protect against a sudden torpedo attack by German submarines, they went on a variable course in anti-submarine formation. The lead ship was "Angry"... Behind him, at a distance of 8 cables, walked "Maksim Gorky" с "Proud" и "Guarding" along the sides.

And it was when the ships went in such a formation, at 3:40, under the nose "Angry" a violent explosion thundered. It turned out that the ships entered the barrage Apoldadelivered the previous night by the German ships of the group "North"... Paravan did not protect "Angry"... Quite the opposite - apparently, the destroyer struck the mine with its bow before the paravan had time to pull it aside. The consequences of the explosion were terrible: the explosion tore off the nose "Angry" on the very bridge.

Water poured into the hole and flooded the third living deck and the first boiler room. The destroyer was left without lighting and movement. 20 sailors were killed and 23 were wounded. The crew immediately began to fight for the unsinkability of the ship and "Angry" kept buoyant. After applying the plasters, after 15–20 minutes, the water flow stopped. Water pumping began with a motor pump and "Angry" took a stable position with a slight roll to the port side. The ship tried to raise steam in the third boiler. But at this time, the observers allegedly found submarine periscopes around the ship, although they could not be on the minefield. Nevertheless, the squadron commander panicked and ordered the transfer of the crew. "Angry" to the destroyer "Proud", flood the damaged ship, and then proceed to Tallinn. The order was carried out, however "Angry" did not want to drown in any way - only two days later he was discovered and finished off by a German aviation... But the problems did not end there.

Cruiser "Maxim Gorky"
Cruiser "Maxim Gorky"

The commanders quickly realized that their squad had stumbled upon a minefield, and leaving it required very careful maneuvering. In a critical situation, the commander "Maxim Gorky", captain of the second rank Anatoly Petrov, kept his composure and immediately after the "Angry" ordered to stop the vehicles on the cruiser, and then at full speed back to prevent a collision with the damaged destroyer. Further, the cruiser at a slow speed back began to leave the dangerous area.

I did the same "Guarding"... Soon, both ships turned on a countercourse, in the direction of the Moonsund Strait, trying to quickly leave the mined waters. It seemed that the danger had already passed when at 4:22 am on the mines Apolda IV blown up "Maksim Gorky"... The damage was no less serious than on "Angry".

"Maksim Gorky" also lost his nose, which sank. And only thanks to the sturdy structure of the hull and bulkheads the cruiser remained afloat. Destroyer coming to his aid "Guarding" was also damaged by the explosion of two pounded mines on the fence "Gotha"... Fortunately, they were insignificant - only the trawl paravan was destroyed. "Guarding" even managed to tow the damaged cruiser to a safe place off the western coast of the island of Vormsi, from where "Maksim Gorky" already on its own, accompanied by torpedo boats and minesweepers, reached Tallinn, and then to Kronstadt and Leningrad.

Finally, the "Proud" was also damaged by mines, although not as severe as "Angry"... On my course "Proud" twice encountered mines, which, during trawling, exploded at a considerable distance and caused only minor damage to the destroyer's hull.

The scrapes in which the detachment of light forces fell, did not, however, affect the operation of the mining group, which quickly and without loss completed the assigned task. The laying of minefields continued in the following days, already under the cover of the cruiser Kirov and destroyers. Moreover, the largest number of mines was placed by the mine. "Marty" under the command of Captain First Rank Nikolai Meshchersky. The cruiser itself Kirov On June 30 - in view of the threat to the Ust-Dvinsk base from land - he was sent to Tallinn, where he arrived, having made a difficult and dangerous passage through the shallow Moonsund Strait.

Worse, the loss of a modern destroyer and heavy damage to the cruiser on the night of June 22-23 further weakened the defenses of the Moonsund Islands. Light damage "Proud" и "Guarding" also did not set up optimistically. The Soviet command realized that the Germans were ahead of the Soviet Union in deploying minefields, and on the night before their attack on the USSR, they managed to create a serious threat to the Soviet naval forces in the Gulf of Finland and in the area of ​​the Moonsund Islands. The threat was all the greater because the Baltic Fleet did not have a sufficient number of minesweepers to eliminate it, and what is worse, did not have the means to combat non-contact magnetic and bottom mines.

Therefore, the commander-in-chief of the Baltic fleet Vice-Admiral Vladimir Tributs already on the second day of the war sent the People's Commissar of the Navy, Admiral Nikolai Kuznetsov, an alarming report about the mine danger and the real threat to paralyze the operations of the fleet. The acuteness of the question forced him to suggest “picking up everything in Leningrad that might be suitable” for sweeping mines, and if this is not possible, then “picking up 15–20 sea or river tugs, up to wheeled ones”.

The proposal was approved. And the anti-mine forces of the Baltic began to be replenished with various vessels of the civil and fishing fleet, adapted to sweep mines or conduct reconnaissance of a mine situation. Due to this, by the beginning of July 1941, the level of mine danger had significantly decreased.

Sources and literature:
S. Balakin. Legendary "sevens": destroyers of the "Stalinist" series... Eksmo, 2007.
N.G. Kuznetsov. Heading towards victory... Military Publishing, 1976.
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45 comments
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  1. Vovk
    Vovk April 22 2021 18: 22
    +8
    Thanks to the author!
    If there is a series of similar articles about the ships of the USSR Navy, it will be interesting information !!!
    1. Paul Neumann
      April 24 2021 20: 08
      +2
      No, the cycle is planned for the battles in the Baltic Sea in 1941-1942. But I will take into account the wishes whenever possible.
  2. Operator
    Operator April 22 2021 18: 24
    .
    Since the beginning of the 20th century, the Baltic Sea has become a soup with dumplings, which gallant domestic admirals have been slurping and continuing to slurp bast shoes.
    1. Stepan S
      Stepan S April 22 2021 18: 39
      +15
      I did not even understand what you wanted to say by this in the context of this article.
      1. Monster_Fat
        Monster_Fat April 23 2021 10: 00
        +6
        Oh, those mines. And plans. In the implementation of pre-war plans, which were actually not a secret for the Germans, our fleets in the very first days began to mine ... approaches to their bases and other, as it seemed, "right" places, thereby severely limiting maneuvering and operational and tactical deployment to their own fleets and in their own waters. On their mines, our fleets lost a huge number of ships and ships, these losses are still secret, some of them, which became public before the re-closure of our archives of the Second World War by the order of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation in March 2021 (https: //www.vedomosti. ru / politics / news / 2021/03/24/862995-shoigu-otmenil-prikaz-serdyukova-o-rassekrechivanii-voennih-arhivov-vremen-vov), given by Shirokorad in his book "Admiral Oktyabrsky against Mussolini". As for this episode, the Germans and Finns, knowing that the Soviet Navy in the very first days of the war would rush to carry out plans to create mine and artillery positions, set up minefields in places where such "positions" were planned and, as it turned out, they were not mistaken. But that's not all. Throughout the war, the Germans and Finns systematically waged a naval mine offensive in the Baltic, systematically pushing back our Baltic fleet with minefields and obstacles and finally locking it in Kronstadt and Leningrad. The command of the Baltic Fleet, due to disgusting intelligence and a lack of understanding of the current mine situation, suffered colossal losses on mines and until 1943 sent their submarines to mines, in fact, for slaughter, thereby practically destroying the entire submarine fleet in the Baltic. And only in September 1944, with Finland's withdrawal from the war, the Baltic Fleet was able to resume hostilities, which it conducted quite successfully. And mines, both our own and those of others, for a long time remained a threat to shipping even after the war, and even now they remain. Some areas of the Black and Baltic Seas are still closed to shipping due to the mine risk left over from the Second World War. For example, here is information about the real mine risk in the Black Sea: https://www.morkniga.ru/p800938.html
        1. vladcub
          vladcub April 23 2021 13: 07
          +2
          "in the first days, they began to mine ... approaches to their bases" regarding the mining of approaches to their bases, there is a double-edged sword: 1) a natural desire to protect oneself from the enemy.
          2) it was necessary to mine wisely, but just then there were no talented admirals in the Second World War.
  3. Sergej1972
    Sergej1972 April 22 2021 18: 39
    +2
    A destroyer of that time in displacement like a modern corvette?
    1. The leader of the Redskins
      The leader of the Redskins April 22 2021 19: 13
      +8
      I am not a sailor, but I read that the "seven" project cannot be classified as successful. There were problems with the strength of the case, if I'm not mistaken.
      1. Undecim
        Undecim April 22 2021 20: 29
        +10
        There were problems with seaworthiness, the air defense was extremely weak, and the anti-submarine capabilities were practically zero.
        1. Vovk
          Vovk April 22 2021 21: 47
          -4
          It seemed to me that the 7-ki project was closer to a light cruiser - especially in artillery armament.
          1. Undecim
            Undecim April 22 2021 22: 05
            +3
            If "sevens" are "closer to a light cruiser", then the Japanese Asashio-class, following your logic, is already "closer to a heavy cruiser".
      2. Constanty
        Constanty April 22 2021 21: 46
        +8
        Yes. The Sevens had problems with the strength and rigidity of the hull (as with other ships with Italian roots), as well as a simpler linear arrangement of the engine room with one engine room, which increased their sensitivity to combat damage. This became obvious on May 14-15, when the destroyer HMS Hunter, destroyed by one mine, immediately lost its ability to move. All this led to the need to develop the "Project 7U" (and numerous repressions among the designers of the shipyard).
        1. Undecim
          Undecim April 22 2021 22: 07
          +6
          The theory of the "correct layout of the engine room" has not received practical confirmation, since such dimensions are not important for ships.
          1. Constanty
            Constanty April 23 2021 14: 11
            +1
            This is true, but at the time (especially after the incident with HMS "Hunter") people thought differently, so the work on the 7U project, / "Watchdog"
        2. Spring fluff
          Spring fluff 20 July 2021 01: 27
          +1
          The development of the destroyer project was entrusted to the Central Design Bureau of Special Shipbuilding TsKBS-1. V.A. was appointed the head of the project. Nikitin, and Pavel Trakhtenberg became the responsible executor of the project. It was Trakhtenberg who began to rebuild the Soviet fleet, with the design of patrol boats (of the "Hurricane" type).

          The assistant to the chief engineer was Voin (Ivan) Petrovich Rimsky-Korsakov, who came from the famous family of naval officers, who also gave Russia a great composer.

          In 1933, Brzezinski became the head of the design team developing new destroyers.

          In 1937, the first 14 ships were not accepted by the government commission, the project was declared "sabotage".

          Prominent designers of the former TsKBS-1 - V.L. Brzezinski, V.P. Rimsky-Korsakov, P.O. Trakhtenberg and the head of the mechanical department A.V. Speransky - were arrested.

          Pavel Osipovich Trakhtenberg was accused of involvement in the Trotskyite-Zinoviev terrorist organization. On May 4, 1937, by an exit session of the Military Collegium of the Supreme Court of the USSR in Leningrad, he was sentenced under Article 58 (paragraphs 7, 8, 11) of the RSFSR Criminal Code to capital punishment. The execution was carried out on May 5, 1937.

          Warrior (Ivan) Petrovich Rimsky-Korsakov was arrested on January 17, 1937 by the visiting session of the Military Collegium of the USSR Supreme Court in Leningrad on May 4, 1937, he was sentenced under Article 58 (paragraphs 7 and 8) of the RSFSR Criminal Code to capital punishment. He was shot already on May 5.

          Voin Petrovich was born in 1889 into a family of hereditary naval officers. His father and grandfather were rear admirals (his grandfather was the brother of the famous composer). Voin Petrovich was the author of a number of works on artillery fire control, which played a significant role in training personnel and improving the armament of the Soviet fleet. He was a very knowledgeable person, whose death was a great loss for the Soviet fleet. http://samlib.ru/k/krasilxnikow_o_j/faschfleet.shtml
      3. hohol95
        hohol95 April 24 2021 13: 57
        +2
        Were there other options for domestic shipbuilders? Or was it necessary to focus all efforts on fine-tuning the Project 45 destroyer?
        Italy sold us a finished project. On their own, they would hardly have created even something like that.
      4. Macsen_wledig
        Macsen_wledig April 25 2021 15: 40
        +1
        Quote: Leader of the Redskins
        There were problems with the strength of the case, if I'm not mistaken.

        They took place, in view of the use of manganese steel, which is prone to cracking, but had an advantage in weight compared to conventional shipbuilding.
  4. Stepan S
    Stepan S April 22 2021 18: 43
    +5
    Minefields at sea and on land are two big differences. At sea, it is more difficult to detect, and de-mine, and mark. Visually, you cannot determine the landmarks, and neither can the safe "path". And the losses are much more serious when blown up by a mine.
  5. Undecim
    Undecim April 22 2021 19: 13
    +15
    Paravan did not protect Wrathful. Quite the opposite - apparently, the destroyer struck the mine with its bow before the paravan had time to pull it aside.

    If the mine was right on course, the paravan could not defend the ship in principle. The paravan does not protect the stem.
    1. Andrey Korotkov
      Andrey Korotkov April 22 2021 20: 02
      +10
      hi I also noticed a discrepancy in the article, the guardian paravan is not a panacea, but if the ship's low speed is observed, the minrep will be cut by a trawl before the mines emerge, apparently in a hurry request
    2. Paul Neumann
      April 24 2021 20: 11
      +2
      I, apparently, put it poorly. I meant exactly what you are talking about here.
  6. Ryaruav
    Ryaruav April 22 2021 19: 37
    +7
    is this where the author found project 7 successful? probably from Soviet literature
    1. Paul Neumann
      April 24 2021 20: 14
      +3
      The author wrote "in general". Those. maybe not the best, but not the worst either. And one cannot ignore the possibilities of the Soviet economy and shipbuilding of that time.
  7. Avior
    Avior April 22 2021 20: 15
    -1
    The Baltic Fleet did not have a sufficient number of minesweepers to eliminate it,
    The minesweeper is an inexpensive ship, relatively easy to build. The question arises - why were there not enough of them? Didn't understand the danger of a mine war?
    1. Niko
      Niko April 22 2021 22: 14
      +6
      Quote: Avior
      The Baltic Fleet did not have a sufficient number of minesweepers to eliminate it,
      The minesweeper is an inexpensive ship, relatively easy to build. The question arises - why were there not enough of them? Didn't understand the danger of a mine war?

      Even now they are not in sufficient quantity, and even more so in the quality appropriate for the time. And it must be taken into account that now "paddle steamers" will not help.
    2. Zug
      Zug April 23 2021 14: 06
      -1
      Even before the war, Tributs wrote a report on the need for at least 120 minesweepers, and from the special building there were only 20 plus a tail, for which they paid (Taktikmedia, Miroslav Morozov)
      1. Avior
        Avior April 23 2021 15: 10
        0
        This is about the Tallinn crossing
        The stake was made on 53 trawling ships located in Tallinn. But the trouble is that about half of them - twenty-three - are minesweeping boats, ten are basic minesweepers and twenty are slow-moving ones. There were no trawls on eighteen trawlers. They were out of order during the previous trawls, while the rest had one or two sets, and they were clearly not enough. At the same time, in the warehouses of the Main Base, the subversive teams destroyed trawls and trawling milestones, which were transported from Kronstadt to Tallinn literally on the eve of the war. Apparently, the tension of the last days of the struggle for the capital of Estonia, confusion, unclear knowledge of the situation did not allow the flagship miner of the Red Banner Baltic Fleet, the mine and torpedo department of the fleet headquarters to use the available potential.
    3. Paul Neumann
      April 24 2021 20: 16
      +1
      Clean water rezunistica - to dig in, sit in pillboxes, not stick out ... And cruisers and destroyers are weapons of attack ...
      1. Avior
        Avior April 25 2021 01: 39
        +1
        Completely incomprehensible comment
  8. dgonni
    dgonni April 22 2021 20: 36
    +2
    Yeah, Ivan Svyatov can't get the nickname Ivan the Tiller!
    In fact, the fleet reconnaissance overslept the beginning of the mine laying by the enemy. Well, the statement about the reduced mine danger by July does not correspond to reality.
    That, in principle, then the Tallinn passage showed in all its glory.
    Well, the use of minesweepers as transports for delivering bombs to Ezel, instead of being engaged in minesweeping, also did not help to reduce the mine threat
    1. Paul Neumann
      April 24 2021 20: 19
      +2
      There will be more about the development of the mine war and the Tallinn crossing. We are still in June 1941.
  9. Unknown
    Unknown April 22 2021 23: 13
    +10
    Yes, what the gray-haired Baltic did not see. All the same, the Germans began to lay mines even before the declaration of war, using the Finnish naval base, but still this is a weak excuse for the command of the KRKBF. Why wave your fists after a fight. The loss of two large ships is painful for the fleet. "Maxim Gorky" until the end of the war eliminated the damage received ...
    The K-1 paravans were not flatteringly responded to in the fleet. Their "whims" caused a lot of trouble for the Soviet sailors. But this is not so bad. Instead of fighting mines, the K-1 paravans often turned into "killers" of their own ships, hitting the minerail and bringing the mine to the side. This is probably what happened with the "Wrathful". Here they are
    The damage to the destroyer was severe.
    It’s dull and it was necessary to save, but what now to argue. Eternal memory to the Red Navy! This was the situation in the Baltic in the summer of 1941. Incidentally, the neutral Swedes also strenuously placed minefields. On July 9, a detachment of three German minelayers, passing through Swedish territorial waters off the island of Öland, flew into a Swedish minefield. Within a couple of hours, mines exploded and sank the Tannenberg (5504 brt), Hanseestadt Danzig (2431 brt) and Preussen (2529 brt) mines. In general, literally everyone began to shield themselves with mines.
    The Gulf of Finland is a difficult place for navigation, there it is cramped for fishermen on TB and MRTK, and during a war with such minefields, it’s a pipe.
    1. Macsen_wledig
      Macsen_wledig April 25 2021 15: 44
      0
      Quote: Unknown
      . "Maxim Gorky" to the end of the war eliminated the damage ...

      On August 12, 1941, "Gorky" entered the post-repair tests.
    2. Alexey RA
      Alexey RA April 26 2021 15: 36
      0
      Quote: Unknown
      Instead of fighting mines, the K-1 paravans often turned into "killers" of their own ships, hitting the mines and bringing the mine to the side. This is probably what happened with "Wrathful"

      EMNIP, the problem was that the German anchor mines had trawling protection devices (pieces of a corrugated tube or chain), which not only did not allow the cutter of the paravan to cut the minrep, but also jammed the minreep in the cutter, after which the paravan dragged the mine under the board on the move ...
      Moreover, these mines were delivered to us before the war within the framework of the Protocols - but the information did not reach the fleets.
    3. Grencer81
      Grencer81 14 June 2021 19: 48
      0
      In general, the Swedes did the job for the Balts.
  10. Egorov Oleg
    Egorov Oleg April 23 2021 09: 48
    +2
    I read that the minefield on which Maxim Gorky and Gnevny exploded was discovered by our minesweeper, who immediately reported it, only the information from the minesweeper simply got lost and was not taken into account.
  11. Kostadinov
    Kostadinov April 23 2021 14: 04
    +4
    The loss of two large ships is painful for the fleet. "Maxim Gorky" until the end of the war eliminated the received damage ...

    After being examined by representatives of the plant number 189, it was decided to restore the cruiser. The work, using materials from the project 68 cruisers under construction, was completed in just 43 days.
    On August 18, 1941, the ship landed in Lesnaya harbor, on August 24, under its own power, along the Sea Canal moved to Khlebnaya Harbor. Participated in repelling numerous air raids and the September assault on Leningrad. Then he fought to the end.
    So the damage was repaired in 43 days, then received new damage - they were also quickly eliminated and the cruiser fought the entire war.
  12. Kostadinov
    Kostadinov April 23 2021 14: 16
    +4
    Throughout the war, the Germans and Finns systematically waged a naval mine offensive in the Baltic, systematically pushing back our Baltic fleet with minefields and obstacles and finally locking it in Kronstadt and Leningrad.

    The fleet went to Leningrad as the Soviet army retreated on land and it lost all other bases and not because it was pushed aside by minnie fields.
    The command of the Baltic Fleet, due to disgusting intelligence and a lack of understanding of the current mine situation, suffered colossal losses on mines and until 1943 sent their submarines to mines, in fact, to slaughter, thereby practically destroying the entire submarine fleet in the Baltic.

    1. Very large losses on mines were suffered by the German and Finnish fleets, often on their own mines. So the question is not about reconnaissance and not about misunderstanding, but a colossal number of mines in such a sea as the Baltic.
    2. "Practically destroying" the submarine fleet inflicted heavy losses on the Germans both in 1942 and at the end of the war.
    1. hohol95
      hohol95 April 24 2021 14: 08
      +1
      You are absolutely right. Mines were a scourge for all sides of the war in the Baltic and also neutral Sweden.
      Transport "Uho" - Swedish transport was blown up by a mine near Ventspils on November 22, 1941.
  13. avia12005
    avia12005 April 23 2021 14: 31
    0
    Now, due to the shortage of minesweepers in the Navy, it is just right to mobilize someone too.
  14. severok1979
    severok1979 April 24 2021 00: 31
    -1
    Why complicate everything - there was simply no need to entrust the destroyers to such an unlucky commander:
    Maxim Timofeevich Ustinov (February 3, 1907 - March 16, 1985) - Rear Admiral, participant in the Soviet-Finnish and Great Patriotic Wars,
    From February 1939 he commanded destroyer "Wrathful"... June 23, 1941, "Wrathful" was blown up by an enemy mine, abandoned by the crew, Ustinov agreed to go to the hospital, where he spent more than 2 months.
    After Ustinov was appointed commander destroyer "Severe"... On the night of November 12-13, 1941, "Severe" was blown up by enemy mines. Ustinov was again shell-shocked and was the last to leave the sinking "Severe".
  15. rozman
    rozman April 24 2021 22: 08
    0
    Bitter to read. The naval commanders of the KBF Tributs and Panteleev sent a large detachment on a mission without smashing the area. A street in St. Petersburg should not be named after an admiral, peace be upon him!
    1. Macsen_wledig
      Macsen_wledig April 25 2021 15: 45
      +1
      Quote: rozman
      The naval commanders of the KBF Tributs and Panteleev sent a large detachment on a mission without smashing the area.

      It's good to be smart in 80 years ... :)
  16. Georg Shep
    Georg Shep April 27 2021 10: 48
    0
    "Wrathful" somehow angered Poseidon. Although the gods, too, are sometimes not in the mood, especially when the water element is littered with all sorts of explosive substances.
  17. Polar Bear
    Polar Bear 9 July 2021 19: 10
    0
    In this story, the clear and quick setting of a minefield across the Gulf of Finland is surprising, and even on a short summer night. Even more surprising is the complete ignorance of the Baltic Fleet, as if it had absolutely no intelligence as a service.