Battleship Mermaid






    General characteristics

    Length (m):


    Width (m):


    Displacement (tons):


    Speed (knots):


    Draft (m):






    4 229 mm
    8 87 mm
    5 37 mm

    battleship mermaid


    In implementing "the monitor" program Marine Office together worked to create a more sophisticated armored coastal defense ships. Construction of "eight new armored vessels" officially approved March 9, 1864 Their supposed to be built in Russia with a contract exclusively from domestic materials.

    According to the results announced

    Marine Ministry of competition for the construction of armored vessels selected a project under the letter "F" British company "Mitchell and K °". The draft revised shipbuilding technical committee and served as the basis for a contract to build two twin-turret boats.

    battleship mermaid

    General cx

    January 14, 1865 a contract was signed with the merchant SG Kudryavtsev about building a "tower two iron armored ships according to the specifications." In order contractor provided boathouses, workshops and warehouses state shipyard, "Galley island" in St. Petersburg on the same basis as before, in the construction of boats "Sagittarius" and "The Unicorn". Deadline boats "to the service of the sea" - May 15, 1867, launching in autumn 1866 Armor, steam machinery, spars, rigging, sails, rowing boats, anchor gear, desalination, galleys, pumps, navigational instruments and all supplies were delivered "from the Treasury" or book through the Shipbuilding Department on private factories.

    battleship mermaid


    Contractor had the duty to ensure the installation on ships of all mechanisms and devices, involving control overseeing construction. Amount of the contract is 539 000 rubles for each armored hull of the boat. At the same time provided for the use Russian iron better quality control measures and fire safety.

    battleship mermaid

    twin-turret armored boat "Enchantress"

    In May 1865, after preparation stocks "Galernogo island" began hulls. Order dated May 29, 1865 boats assigned the name "Enchantress" and "Mermaid".

    May 25, 1866, the official laying ships. Work was carried out vigorously enough, but too late Izhorskij factory with manufacturing stem delivered until the fall. Shipbuilding Department decision of 6 May to install armor on the slipway (sludge boats allowed to hold them in Kronstadt with armor) did not accelerate readiness. Izhorsk Botkinsky plants and do not have time to put the armor in September 1866, also remain unresolved questions about the construction of towers and combat logging. Contract for production of the main mechanisms prisoner May 2, 1866 by the Byrd envisaged their final installation only to I May 1868

    Corps ships of "Mermaid" were built on the cellular system with a double bottom. Kiel was typed sheets of size 610 x 14 mm frames - of "angle iron" 102 x 76 x 10 mm (frames 203 x 76 x 13 mm, quad 0.61 m). Hatches on the upper deck coamings height 457 mm supplied with 25mm combat iron and storm wooden covers. Stem ended in a battering ram (recess 2, the projection of 1.4 m). Side armor recruited from two rows of plates in the middle of the total height of 2.3 with immersion in water 1.7 m and a thickness of 114 mm (95 in the fore and aft 83).

    battleship mermaid

    twin-turret armored boat "Mermaid"

    To protect against flooding of the upper deck, is only 0.6 m from the waterline, the project includes a folding device bulwark around the perimeter of the deck. However, the effectiveness of such measures in the future has not been confirmed, the bulwarks in 1867 was removed, and for ease of management between the towers of the bridge set width 3.6 m with narrow cross-site for "marching Lantern" and "cast lots." Along the edges of the bridge placed hammock nets and boats: desyativeselny boat shestiveselny whaleboat, four - and Sculls Yaly. Hatch coamings between the towers brought to the level of the bridge, the bulwarks replaced guard rail.


    swimming identified many design flaws tower boats, the most important of them - small freeboard and poor maneuverability. At excitement only 1-2 points and low speed water flooded the upper deck, penetrating into the body through the gaps between the deck and the towers and other openings. Given that the longitudinal axis of the 229-mm guns, towered above the sea level by only 1.28 m, and the water from the lower deck could penetrate into the powder room and bomb cellar, combat use of boats even at low agitation seemed to be very problematic. In addition, during the shooting forward of the beam damaged fencing hatches on the upper deck.

    Boats almost did not respond to rudder to 20 °, maneuvering required a lot of time and hard work of steering, to facilitate which in 1874 added a wheel on the top helm. A number of design flaws persists in 1870-1874 gg.: To ensure the integrity of windows on the hatches, installed two travel compass, steering wheels altered by replacing copper metal parts, made valves for bypass water in double bottoms, etc.


    like "Mermaid" - the latest and most advanced ships in the Baltic Sea coastal defense with a minimum height of fully armored freeboard. In the course of their construction and operation determined the necessity of combining reliable protection with sufficient seaworthiness. Solving this problem is reflected in the following types of armored ships - frigates tower.


    Laid January 14, 1865 at Mitchell factory in St. Petersburg. Launched August 31, 1867.

    entered service in 1869. Disarmed and handed over to the port March 25, 1907. Scrapped in 1911-1912 in St. Petersburg.


    the summer of 1893 teaching and artillery detachment of warships under the command of Rear Admiral Burachek based in Revel. The squad are: flagship armored battery "Firstborn" armored battery "Kremlin" battleship "Rusalka" and the gunboat "cloud." After the end of the summer program firing squad had to return to Kronstadt. Burachek instructed battleship "Rusalka" and the gunboat "cloud" to go first in the United Helsingfors, ie the shortest route through the Gulf of Finland, and thence through the archipelago in Biorke, where they await the arrival of the remaining ships in Revel squad.

    evening September 6 Burachek signal from the flagship battleship ordered "Rusalka" and boat "cloud" ready to march to 7.30 am.

    Time to lift the anchor was chosen too late: in the Gulf of change in the weather in most cases occur around noon. Consequently, the most reliable was shot at dawn, and, going even at a speed of 6 knots, the ships could be in place by noon or one o'clock in the afternoon. In fact, the battleship and the boat was not ready for a hike to 7.30 and even weighed only 8.30. At the "Mermaid" commander, Captain 2nd rank Ienish arrived with almost an hour late. Ienish reputed captain in the Navy executive officer, some even considered him pedantic. That's why all his late puzzled.

    "cloud" came out of the harbor of Revel in 8 hours 30 minutes, with a speed of about 6 knots. Ten minutes later and moved "Mermaid", and its velocity does not exceed two nodes due to prolonged cleaning anchors, which could only be carried out at the low speed.

    Thus, at nine o'clock in the morning "Mermaid" was held not more than one mile. Already on the roads the distance between her and "as a cloud" was one and a half miles. At nine o'clock in the morning, "cloud", using a fair wind, the sails set, and move it immediately increased to 8 knots.

    Her commander, Captain 2nd rank Lushkov, knew that the ships of "Mermaid" at big wave should batten down the hatches, and thus the access of air to the furnace decreases and the vapor pressure falls. In addition, the "Mermaid" was a passing wave and much griping, so needed to shift wheel side to side, which also slows down.

    About 10 o'clock the wind in the Gulf reached almost 9 points down and fog. Barometer continued to fall, and you can expect even worse. By 11 o'clock when passing abeam Revelshteynskogo plavmayaka distance between the ships was nearly four miles.

    At 11 hours and 40 minutes the fog intensified so that the "Mermaid" completely out of sight. Since nobody else saw. It happened when the "cloud" considered herself distant from Revelshteynskogo lighthouse at the rate of 10 miles, and "Mermaid" was from him about 6 miles.

    Lushkov decided not expecting armadillo continue to sail alone. He considered dangerous for "Clouds" with such excitement to go slower.

    At 12 hours and 40 minutes of "cloud" passed Eransgrundsky lightship that was about two-thirds of the way from Revel. Then she took a course on Grohara - lighthouse on a rocky island on the way to Helsingfors, and passing it to 1 hour 50 minutes, at 3 pm anchored in the roads.

    September 7, 1893 Lushkov sent a telegram to the commander of the detachment Revel Rear Admiral Burachek safe arrival of the boat "cloud" to Helsinki. However, he said not a word about "Mermaid". Burachek received this telegram, took no steps to find out where the "Mermaid" and why Lushkov not fulfilled his orders to go together with the battleship.

    At 7:00 am on September 9, Rear Admiral Burachek arrived in Biorke. Nobody here knew nothing about "Mermaid" or on the "cloud", although they are under normal conditions had already arrived there. Lushkov overlooked the "cloud" of Helsingfors September 9 at 5 hours 30 minutes to follow in Skerries Biorke. Arriving in Rochernsalm, he sent a telegram to third Burachek where requested, whether to go in or wait Biorke "Mermaid". The telegram was delivered to the addressee only 10 September morning. Upon receipt, when there were serious fears for the fate of "Mermaid", Rear Admiral should immediately telegraph this higher naval authorities, but he somehow did not ...

    first information about "Mermaid" were obtained in Sveaborgskaya port late at night on September 9 Helsingfors police chief. He reported that one of the islands Kremare boat washed the corpse military sailor, and on the island of Sandhamn found a few broken boats and wooden debris. Thus, the Russian Ministry of the Navy learned about the loss of "Mermaid" only on September 10 that is on the third day after her death.

    The search for a place of destruction "Mermaid" began on the same day and were driven all the time, except on those days when due to high winds was not possible to go to sea.

    search continued until October 16, that is 37 days. Work suspended in connection with the come frosts and winter storms. In search involved 15 ships sent from Helsingfors, Kronstadt and Revel.

    Searches courts failed to determine the place of death of the battleship, but in the sea have been found and caught, and brought the residents of coastal wetlands and islands of various objects with dead ship, including its lifeboats. All boats found oarlocks were not inserted. In the boat, found on the island Kremare under fodder banks found dead sailor.

    In June 1894 search for "Mermaid" used balloons that hauled screw schooner "Samoyed". However, they have not helped. August 15 was ordered to stop searching and remove milestones placed in the bay.

    At 12:00 pm October 4, 1894 at the Russian market in Revel, a solemn memorial service for the sailors who died on the "Mermaid".

    Experts Commission of Inquiry concluded that the machine, boilers and drainage facilities on the battleship were in good condition and excluding any adverse circumstances that could cause the loss of the ship.

    news of the death "Rusalka" and the entire team comprising 177 people deeply disturbed population of tsarist Russia. At Revel, where "Mermaid" was not just in the summer campaign, personally knew many members of the team, especially since the city had a lot of relatives of the victims.

    famous Russian marine painter Ivan Aivazovsky created in connection with the death of "Mermaid" a new picture and sent it to St. Petersburg. There it was put on display and collection of funds for the assistance to the bereaved families.


    Revel held concerts in favor of relatives of the dead sailors.

    Ads daily intake of donations to the families of those killed in Reval newspapers began to appear since September 1893.

    In 2003, Estonian researchers found the crash site of the legendary Russian battleship. Expedition repeated possible course of the ship, and the payment was justified. More than a century "Mermaid" was lying on the bottom of the Gulf of Finland. On unique footage divers clearly visible distinctive detail "Rusalka" - armored screws old cruciform shape. On-site tower guns gaping hole. Housing "Mermaid" came nose in clay bottom and stood almost vertically. Feed the ship rises above the ground to a height of nine homes. Since the destruction of the battleship for her more than once clung to fishing nets.

    According to Estonian researchers, the Russian side should decide the fate of the sunken battleship.


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