Minesweepers are special-purpose ships whose task is to search, detect and destroy sea mines and to lead other ships through minefields.
Prior to 1922 the both ships went by the same historic routes, and if to tell about the minesweeper No 15, it is equal if to tell about minesweeper No 14.
In 1895 they were launched as tugs. On June 3, 1915 during the First World War the tugs were mobilized and enrolled in the lists of the Baltic Fleet as minesweepers No 14 and No 15. Until 1917 they took part in different hostilities: they swept mines, and mined.
Minesweeper No 14: Length – 124 ft, width – 19 ft, draft – 6 ft. Displacement – 140 tons. Two steam engines with total capacity of 477 hp. Speed – 10 knots. Oil supply – 40 tons. Cruising range at full speed – 1680 miles. Armament: one large-caliber gun, two machine guns. Crew – 34 men.
Minesweeper No 15: Length – 127 ft, width – 19 ft, draft – 6 ft. Displacement – 135 tons. Three engines with total capacity of 450 hp. Speed – 13 knots. Oil supply – 60 tons. Cruising range – 1,800 miles . Armament: one large-caliber gun, one machine gun. Crew – 35 men.
In the early 20th century minesweepers, using special underwater chains, cut mines from the underwater holders and, after their surfacing, shot them.
On October 25, 1917 the minesweepers, mooring in Kronstadt, were ordered to leave for Petrograd to accompany the cruiser Aurora. The minesweepers went across the Neva River and anchored in front of the windows of the Winter Palace. Some of the crew remained aboard, and the rest joined the troops of the Red Guards and sailors who were storming the last refuge of the bourgeois government. The minesweepers stood in Petrograd until the establishment of the Soviet government in the city, and after that they returned to Finnish ports.
Having discharged their service in the Red Fleet with fidelity, the ships were dismantled due to their old age: minesweeper No 14 in 1924, minesweeper No 15 – in 1928.
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