Scuttling the Navy August 29, 1943:
By Søren Nørby, arts student
The minesweeper SØBJØRNEN was blown up and scuttled at 0422 hours, August 29.
As the combs clock was started, the sweepers captain, Commander Erik Rasmussen, ordered the mooring lines dropped and the engines on half astern. The purpose was to get the ship out to less shallow water before the bomb went off, and the ship started to take water.
However, the SØBJØRNEN sank only slowly, as a watertight bulkhead in one of the fore ward compartments kept it afloat. It took one or two days before the minesweeper finally sank.
The ship was righted on November 3, and raised on the 18th.
However, the ship broke up during the German attempt to salvage the ship.
The aft part of the ship broke off, and was raised on November 22. The fore part of the ship was raised November 24, and was placed on land six days later.
The salvaging was assisted by the Naval Dock Yards own floating steam crane, which had been seized by the Germans.
SØBJØRNEN could no be repaired and was scrapped by the Germans. A few remains were found at the Royal Dockyard in May, 1945.
Behind the SØBJØRNEN you can se one of the scuttled floating steam units.
(Photos: Royal Danish Naval Museum)
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This page was last updated: March 4, 2003
This page was first published: October 20, 2002