Military Review

The actions of the submarine forces of the Baltic Fleet in 1942


The 1942 campaign of the Baltic submarines fleet three echelons broke through the blockade of the Gulf of Finland, more and more strengthened by the enemy. During the year, 32 submarines went to sea, six of which made military campaigns twice. It is reliably established that as a result of their actions, the enemy lost 43 and 3 ships were seriously damaged. The data on the destruction of about 20 more ships have not been fully confirmed. This is also explained by the fact that the enemy used the ships of Denmark, Norway, France, Holland, Belgium, Poland for sea transport in the Baltic Sea, and their death was not included in the lists of losses.

In this difficult year for the Baltic submariners in the Gulf of Bothnia, the Aland Sea and on the approaches to them 13 submarines operated. From 8, U-317 and U-303 from the first echelon, which then broke through to the Baltic Sea, the tasks in this area were solved by the UH-406; from 9 submarines of the second - U-309, C-13 and "Lembit" - from 16 submarines of the third - C-7, C-9, U-308, U-304, U-307, U-305 and L-3. The activity of our submarine forces in the northern Baltic and the constant increase in their numbers were due to the high intensity of the enemy’s sea traffic here, which only from 18 of June to 31 of December made 3885 flights. According to a number of domestic studies, the boats operating there sank nine ships and damaged four. Finnish sources also cite the loss of seven and damage to four ships. There are also differences in the definition of areas and dates of their drowning.

At the same time, in these areas, there were also many military clashes between Soviet submarines and Finnish anti-submarine defense forces (warships, aviation and submarines), which were the result of the loss of stealth by our boats, insufficiently careful observation of the situation and misses during torpedo fire. In some cases, the commanders decided to surface and use the artillery systems on board. As a result of military clashes and mines of 13 submarines operating in the North Baltic, 5 were lost.

First-line boats that broke through the enemy's anti-submarine frontiers in the Gulf of Finland initially reached relatively favorable conditions - the enemy did not expect them to break through, being sure of the effectiveness of the blockade, and the torpedoing of the first ships was classified as undermining by mines. Therefore, the enemy initially did not search for and prosecute attacking Soviet submarines at all. The news of the Soviet Information Bureau from 11 on July 1942 about the successes of the Baltic submariners, which, as noted, sank over the last days of the Nazi 5 ships, convinced him to the contrary. After that, the conditions for the actions of our submarines began to deteriorate sharply.

Of the three first-tier submarines that were involved in operations in the area, the entire patrol period there was only U-303, and U-317 and U-406 only a fraction of the time. Of these submarines, U-317 under the command of Lieutenant Commander N.K. Mokhov The first transport of the enemy, Argo, out of five ships sunk by it during the combat campaign (Orion, Rain, Ada Gorton, and Otto Korda with a total capacity of 11 thousand brts) was torpedoed in the Aland Sea region. Unfortunately, Shch-317 itself did not return to the base. It was assumed that, returning from a campaign, she died in the Gulf of Finland. This is indicated, in particular, by Finnish sources, claiming that their observation posts on July 12 marked an underwater explosion at the coordinates of 59 ° 41 'N / 24 ° 06' E, and aerial reconnaissance found an oil trail there . After the bombing was carried out in this area, the ascent of pieces of wood, mattresses, etc. was observed. Point in stories U-317 delivered in the summer of 1999, the Swedish search engines, who announced that they had found this submarine resting on the seabed at the point 57 ° 52 'N / 16 ° 55' E

Submarine U-406 captain 3 rank E.Ya. Osipova initially acted at the Swedish skerries. In three attacks of the enemy ships, the crew noted explosions, but the commander did not observe their results. According to foreign sources, U-406 then sank the transport "Fides". At the same time, the schooner Hannah disappeared here. The same sources cite information about the sinking of the submarine itself by the antisubmarine forces of the enemy. But it was a mistake. On July 17, the boat received a categorical ban on attacking ships and vessels flying under any flag in the area, and u-406 was transferred to the Aland Sea. Here she twice attacked the enemy convoys, but the commander did not observe the results of her actions due to the pursuit by the enemy ships. 7 August submarine returned to base.

U-303 captain-lieutenant I.V. Travkina, acting in the area of. Ute, I did not observe the results of my attacks either, but in the third of them, as we know, the transport ship Aldebaran was seriously damaged by a displacement 7890 brt. The escort ships counterattacked the boat, unfortunately, during an urgent dive on the Shch-303, the horizontal rudders failed, the boat hit the ground and damaged the nasal tip, due to which the torpedo covers did not open. On the seventh of August the boat was also forced to return to the base.

The breakthrough of enemy anti-submarine lines in the Gulf of Finland by Soviet submarines of the 2-echelon was carried out in a more complicated situation, and actions at sea met with more powerful opposition from its PLO forces, which the enemy had increased by transferring part of the ships from the North and Norwegian Seas. In addition, the aircraft of neutral Sweden began to search for our submarines, and its naval forces to escort ships far beyond their territorial waters. Data was also reported on the use of the German ships and ships of the neutral Swedish flag in these areas.

U-309 captain 3 rank I.S. Kabo was the second after Shch-406 boat operating in the Aland Sea. Unfortunately, despite four torpedo attacks on enemy convoys, its commander could not establish the results in any case. According to foreign data, this boat 12 September was sunk transport "Bonden".

Similarly, the Lembit submarine, whose commander, Lieutenant Commander A.M., acted on the approaches to the Gulf of Bothnia. Matiyasevich, in each of the three attacks, sought to fix its results. According to foreign data, the 14 of September was heavily damaged by the Finnish transport, although after the attack, Matiyasevich observed one sinking and one burning ship from the convoy after the attack. On September 4, after an attack by a transport from another convoy (8 transports in the escort of 5 ships), he observed only 7 transports on the surface.

Of particular note is the C-13 submarine hike, Captain-Lieutenant P. Malanchenko, who for the first time entered the Gulf of Bothnia. Here, despite the fact that the war was already the second year, the enemy behaved rather carelessly. Transitions of vessels were carried out without escort, at night they often carried all the lights put in peacetime. Nevertheless, the submarine was pursued by failures, although it carried out all the attacks from a surface position. Finding 11 in September, a single transport "Hera" (1378 brt) and firing one torpedo from a distance of 5 cab, the commander missed and sank the transport only the second two torpedo salvo. The next day, the situation was almost the same, but with the transport “Jussi X” (2373 brt). True, this time the first torpedo hit and the transport was damaged, but another torpedo was needed to sink it. September 17 was even more unfortunate: all three consecutive single torpedo shots on the next single vehicle were unsuccessful, and the commander set fire to his artillery. October 30 boat suffered a failure in the attack of the enemy convoy. This was the result of operations in the northern Baltic submarines of the 2 echelon.

The actions of the submarine forces of the Baltic Fleet in 1942

The breakout and return of the two first echelons of submarines was comparatively successful (from 17 boats the U-317 out of the Gulf of Finland and another two young M-95 and M-97 operating in the bay itself were lost), this gave rise to certain headquarters that the situation in the Gulf of Finland is assessed correctly, and the methods and methods for crossing the enemy’s obstacles are correct. However, the enemy has already identified the organization of their exit and has taken additional countermeasures, both in the Gulf of Finland and in other parts of the sea. In particular, three middle Finnish submarines “Iku-Thurso” (hero of the Finnish epic), “Vesihichi” (“Sea Devil”) and “Vetechinen” (“Sea King”) were involved in the fight with our boats, as well as two small ones: "Vesikko" ("Water") and "Saukkou (" Otter "). Medium submarines operated in the Aland Sea, small - in the Gulf of Finland. In the Aland Sea, the Finns carried out a search in the areas of detection of our boats, in the daytime they lay on the ground and were engaged in sonar observation, and at night they surfaced and walked tacks, trying to find our submarines while charging batteries.

In the third echelon of the Baltic submarines, the first 15 of September were S-9 and W-308, respectively, on the Gulf of Bothnia and on the approaches to it. Boat C-9 captain-lieutenant A.I. Mylnikova, who replaced the C-13 here, had already met the military transport organization: the ships followed in guarding the ships, a search and strike group PLO operated in the area. Attacking the first convoy of the enemy, C-9 sank the transport "Anna V", but was rammed by another ship, fortunately, only rattled the bottom of the stern of the boat. The next day, after an unsuccessful torpedo attack, she set fire to the Mittel Meer transport with artillery, and only the accident that occurred two days later caused her to return to the base ahead of schedule.

Submarine U-308 captain-lieutenant L.N. Kostyleva only a month after the occupation of the district reported on victory and sinking in the area of ​​Fr. Ute three enemy transports, saying that it has damage to the durable hull. Foreign sources confirm the sinking of the Hernum transport (1467 brt) and, moreover, report that on October 26 at nightfall, when U-308 floated to the surface, on the way to the Cerda-Kvarken strait at 62 ° 00'sev N / 19 ° 32'Eaft it was discovered and sank by torpedoes Finnish submarine "Iku-Thurso". True, Finnish sources mistakenly believe that this was the submarine u u-320, which died earlier on mines in the Gulf of Finland.

U-307 captain 3 rank N.O. Momot 23 September went into combat campaign. On the second of October in the Aland Sea, in her first attack of an enemy convoy, she fired two torpedoes, the explosion of which was heard by the entire crew, but the counterattack of enemy ships did not allow the commander to establish the results of the shooting. October 11 during the attack of other vehicles was missed, and the explosion of the first depth bomb was mistaken for a torpedo explosion. On October 21, the enemy evaded a salvo fired at the third torpedo detected by the convoy, and only when attacking the fourth convoy U-307 sank the transport "Betty X" (2477 brt). From October 11 the boat was intensely searching for the Finnish submarine "Iku-Thurso". She found U-16 U-307 three times during 27 days and attacked her with torpedoes and artillery, but did not achieve success, although she believed that she sank our October 1 boat. November 307 U-XNUMX returned to base.

The C-7 and Shch-305 submarines on their last trip to the Gulf of Bothnia and the Aland Sea went out simultaneously on October 17. C-7 Captain-Lieutenant S.P. Lisin, making his second military campaign in that year, went to replace the C-9 submarine and was the third boat to conduct military operations in the Gulf of Bothnia. 21 October with the onset of the dark time of day it surfaced and on the course 320 ° and the speed of 12 nodes began charging the battery. At about the same time west of Fr. Legsker, the Finnish submarine Vesikhiisi, which was carrying out its search, stopped the diesel engine and, in order to create better conditions, its GAS switched over to movement under electric motors. In 19 h 26 min she found a Soviet boat on 190 ° bearing at a distance of 8 km and 17,5 ° in a combat course 248 ° from a distance of 3 km made a two-torpedo salvo. After another 3,5 minutes, two successive explosions crashed over the sea, and C-7, breaking in half, sank. The navigator of the Finnish submarine noted the coordinates of her death: 59 ° 50' ° 42'East, sea depth 71 m.

All those who stood on the bridge of our boat, threw a blast into the sea. Shturman M.T. Khrustalev drowned, and the commander S.P. Lisin, A.K. Olenin, commander V.S. Subbotin and bilge VI Marten were captured. They, contused by the explosion, were taken aboard the Vesihisi and taken to Mariehamn. They courageously endured captivity, and when Finland announced its withdrawal from the war in 1944, they returned to their homeland. Perhaps some readers who are guided by modern liberal-democratic "historians" will be surprised, but they are not even "wiped into camp dust." Subsequently, Lisin and Olenin continued their service in the underwater, and Subbotin and Kunita retired. Lisin commanded a submarine division on the Pacific Fleet, participated in the war with Japan, he was awarded the star of the Hero of the Soviet Union (!).

Boat U-305 (commander captain 3 rank DM Sazonov) 5 November was discovered by the Finnish submarine "Vetehinen" also during the replenishment of energy reserves on the course 110 ° and the course of 8 nodes. Focusing on the work of our submarine diesel engines, the Finnish submarine became close to her and in 22 h 50 min found U-305 in 230 ° bearing at 1,7 km distance. Five minutes later, the Finnish commander from a distance less than 2 cab made a two-torpedo salvo and simultaneously opened fire from a cannon. However, the torpedoes passed by. Then he decided to ram our submarine and after a couple of minutes he struck her with a blow to the port side with a bow. The blow caused severe damage to our submarine and U-305 quickly sank. This happened at point 80 ° 09 'N / N / 19 ° 11' E The "Veteive" itself after the collision was repaired for a long time.

The last submarines that operated in the 1942 year in the northern Baltic were the 27 of October U-304 and L-3. Each made their second trip in a year. From Shch-304 captain 3 rank Ya.P. Afanasyev not a single report was received. She was believed to have perished during the crossing of the Gogland position, but foreign sources suggest that she acted on the approaches to the Gulf of Bothnia until the first days of December. So, on November 13, a Finnish minzag in the area three times shied away from single submarine torpedoes. The fourth passed under the keel of the ship, but it did not explode on his happiness. November 17 submarine torpedoes here were damaged two ships from the convoy. There is evidence that in the beginning of December, the presence of a Soviet boat was noted in this area. In 2004, U-304, which lies at the bottom, divers of the Finnish Navy were discovered and identified. The submarine died on a mine in the northern part of the Nashorn barrier.

PL L-3 captain 2 rank PD Gryshchenko, according to the plan of the campaign, in the area of Ute put up a mine can on which in early November the transport ship Hindenburg was detonated and sank with a displacement of 7880 brt. On November 5, she departed to the southern areas of the Baltic, where she also destroyed 4 ships and one enemy submarine on the mines she set.

In 1943, our boats from the Gulf of Finland to the Baltic failed to break through, and in 1944, due to the withdrawal of the Finnish war, the tasks for operations in the northern Baltic were not set before them. Thus, the 1942 year was the most tragic for the submarine forces of the Baltic Fleet, during which the 12 of our submarines was lost. In addition to the three submarines that were killed during the actions of the 1-th and 2-th forces, as well as the U-405 captain 3 rank IV Grachev, who died on the crossing from Kronstadt to Lavensaari, 3 submarines were killed from the 8-echelon. These are: C-7, U-302, U-304, U-305, U-306, U-308, U-311 and U-320.

Yemelyanov L. Soviet submarines in the Great Patriotic War. M .: Voenizdat, 1981. With 48-67.
Morozov M. Submarines of the Soviet Navy in the Great Patriotic War 1941-1945 Chronicle of military campaigns. Part of 1. Red Banner Baltic Fleet. M .: Polygon, 2003. C. 3-94.
Russin Y. 1942 Northern Baltic. // Sea collection. 1991. No.12. C. 24-28
Chirva E. Submarine war in the Baltic. 1939-1945.M .: Yauza, Eksmo, 2009. C. 18-34, 127-146.
Zolotarev V. Kozlov I. Three Centuries of the Russian Navy. 1941 – 1945 - SPb .: OOO Polygon Publishing House, 2005. C.112-119
Articles from this series:
The actions of the submarine forces of the Black Sea Fleet in the first period of the war .

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  1. parusnik
    parusnik 7 July 2016 07: 58
    Thank you .. Eternal memory to submariners ...
  2. Leto
    Leto 7 July 2016 08: 05
    It was explained by the high intensity of the enemy’s sea traffic, which amounted to 18 flights only from June 31 to December 3885.

    Those. daily 21 vessels were on this route.
    During the year, 32 submarines went to sea, six of which made military campaigns twice. It is reliably established that as a result of their actions, the enemy lost 43 and 3 ships were seriously damaged.

    3885 minus 46 flights and minus 12 PL.
    1. Alex_59
      Alex_59 7 July 2016 10: 44
      Quote: Leto
      3885 minus 46 flights and minus 12 PL.

      I look at you in all topics diligently, but carefully emphasize all the negativity that is possible. About aviation, you persistently argued that the Germans had complete dominance in the air (which by the way is not true); here, too, the death of our 12 boats was singled out. In principle, there is nothing wrong with emphasizing errors and failures. If at the same time not to keep silent and success, too. What is behind you for some reason not noticed. I wonder what that would mean? Thin trolling?
      1. Leto
        Leto 7 July 2016 13: 57
        Quote: Alex_59
        I look at you in all topics diligently, but carefully emphasize all the negativity that is possible.

        If the harsh reality is negative, then I see no reason to hide it. The author is trying the criminal orders of the Tributs, for which he had to be given to the tribunal to cover up with the heroism of the submariners who died in minefields set by both Germans and ours. There was no point in sending submariners to certain death. Those who were able to break through mine banks could not affect the flow of iron ore. The Germans since 1940 to 1944 received from Sweden more than 45 million tons of iron ore alone.
        1. Alex_59
          Alex_59 7 July 2016 14: 38
          Quote: Leto
          If the harsh reality is negative, then I see no reason to hide it.

          That is, everything was bad, is and will be, and there is nothing light in this dark kingdom? Your position is clear. In my eyes, your rating is downgraded to "skull and bones" on your shoulder straps. Skillful trolling is a plus. There is rarely anyone who can. smile
    2. Cat
      Cat 7 July 2016 21: 22
      The Baltic Sea, and in particular the Gulf of Finland, is probably a failed theater for the actions of the submarine fleet. It is necessary to take into account the shallows, skerries, Finnish and mine fields, the almost complete lack of navigation in the winter. A classic example, when Pl Pobeda ate break through on the communication of the opponent. For only adversity, the crew and escort ships must be given medals.
  3. Technical engineer
    7 July 2016 09: 16
    Data on the destruction of the order of 20 vessels did not find complete, one hundred percent confirmation. This is also explained by the fact that the enemy used ships of Denmark, Norway, France, Holland, Belgium, Poland for sea shipments on the Baltic, and their death was not included in the list of losses.
  4. Kenneth
    Kenneth 7 July 2016 10: 16
    According to official Soviet data, in 1942, KBF submarines sank torpedoes of 34 transport vessels (93.896 gt) and 1 ship. 10 transports with a total displacement of 24.330 gt and 1 ship became victims of mines, 3 vessels (6.304 gt) were sunk by artillery. (A total of 47 sunk and 4 damaged vessels with a total displacement of 124.530 and 19.833 gross tonnage and 2 ships). The actual result looks a bit more modest: 15 ships (32.415 gt) sunk by torpedoes, 2 (2.061 gt) artillery sunk, 5 transports (10.907 gt) died on land mines. A total of 22 vessels (45.383 gt).
    1. Alex_59
      Alex_59 7 July 2016 10: 40
      Quote: Kenneth
      The actual result looks a bit more modest: 15 ships (32.415 gross) torpedoes sunk, 2 (2.061 gross) artillery, 5 transports (10.907 gross) died on land mines. Total 22 ship (45.383 gross).

      According to the numbers I have:
      Mines: 6 ships, 10 ships (29,4 thousand tons)
      Submarine torpedoes: 7 ships (19,1 thousand tons)
      Aviation: 1 ship (1,5 thousand tons)
      Total 24 boats on 50,08 thousand tons
      1. Kenneth
        Kenneth 7 July 2016 10: 47
        My figures, if I understand correctly, reflect solely the actions of the pl or mines exhibited by them.
  5. Kenneth
    Kenneth 7 July 2016 10: 17
    According to Yu. Meister, in 1942, 203 warships, 75 hospital ships and 1.868 merchant ships with a total tonnage of 5.592.189 gross tons passed 405.459 soldiers, 15.454 horses, 12.866 vehicles and 377. 856 tons in German convoys in the Baltic Sea. military property. (F. Ruge gives an even larger figure: from June to the end of 1942, the total tonnage of German convoys in the Baltic amounted to 6 million gross).
    1. GYGOLA
      GYGOLA 7 July 2016 10: 55
      There is a documentary 4-episode film: "Convoy: Battle of the Atlantic." the truth of the National Geographic company, but very interesting, of course, the Americans attribute a lot of victories to themselves this is a fact ...
    2. Kostadinov
      Kostadinov 7 July 2016 14: 53
      It is unrealistic to expect that Soviet submarines could interrupt the supply of Germans to the Baltic Sea. But they inflicted losses on the enemy and engaged several times more of his forces for the protection of shipping. The command and crews of the submarine fulfilled their task perfectly for the conditions of the Baltic in 1942.
      1. Kenneth
        Kenneth 7 July 2016 16: 44
        If you compare the effectiveness with opponents or allies, then it is of course quite low. Given the losses, it is still more sad. Damage no more than a percent of the cargo turnover is not significant at all. That is, the Germans did not even notice him. But of course the submariners are not to blame for this. They showed heroism and even self-sacrifice in the most difficult conditions of the German plo, which was more than effective, even drowned the Swedish pl. The problem is the lack of planning and the lack of support for our pl. From the command.
        1. Andrei from Chelyabinsk
          Andrei from Chelyabinsk 7 July 2016 17: 18
          Quote: Kenneth
          The problem is the lack of planning and the lack of support for our pl. From the command.

          How much could the command provide? From the besieged Leningrad?
          1. Cat
            Cat 7 July 2016 21: 38
            I repeat. The Baltic Sea for chalk is crayon, too cut up by skerries and shoals. It must be remembered that Finland was an ally, and Denmark and Norway were occupied by Germany. The Swedes in all traded with the Germans. Our submarine fleet from the eastern corner of the Baltic Sea was yet to break through on enemy communications. If you read the memoirs of our sailors it was the most difficult.
            Another question? Strategically pl Baltic was not enough in the Arctic Ocean. Only a drop of the Danish king managed to pass the channel through the Belomor Sea to the beginning of the Second World War.
        2. Kostadinov
          Kostadinov 8 July 2016 16: 22
          It is only possible to compare effectiveness with opponents (it is impossible to compare with allies because their submarines in the Baltic Sea have never had such a number of mines). Only in 1944-45 did German boats operate in the Baltic against Soviet shipping under similar conditions and sank one (1) Finnish ship and a dozen boats and schooners, losing at least 5 boats.
          The main damage is not lost freight turnover:
          1. The growth of forces to take their PLO many times.
          2. The use of thousands of mines for the defense of navigation from Soviet boats. These mines killed many German transports and warships (including the two newest destroyers Z-35 and Z-36 in December 1944).
          3. A direct threat to the training of the German submarine fleet and, as a result, a series of attacks by anti-aircraft forces on their own boats.
    3. The comment was deleted.
  6. Kenneth
    Kenneth 7 July 2016 19: 12
    Yes. For example, the fight against German barriers, the use of aircraft, tracking the breakthrough of barriers, assessing the danger of breaking through barriers.
  7. Torkvat torkvat
    Torkvat torkvat April 28 2017 06: 45
    The very modest successes of the "red submelt" ... very. The Germans both carried ore from Sweden and carried it without any problems.