We recently reported that The ship Virsaitis / M68 (1916 - 1941) will remain asleep at the bottom, when at the beginning of November, organized by the Estonian underwater archaeologist Vello Mass, another underwater archeological expedition took place in the Gulf of Finland, during which the first Latvian icebreaker was identified by underwater filming. Krišjānis Valdemārs wreck, informs the representative of the Freeport of Riga Authority Anita Laiškalne.
Krišjānis Valdemārs wreck research
Shipwreck Krišjānis Valdemārs underwater search The investigation began three years ago, when it was discovered by the Estonian captain Vello Mass on the private initiative of the Latvian side. The wreck is located in the Gulf of Finland, at a depth of about 100 meters, where there are strong underwater currents, and it is half submerged. This year, with the financial support of the Freeport of Riga and a special underwater filming robot, the underwater video filming of the ship was started. The captured footage of the underwater filming allowed to identify several significant details of the ship.
About the sea icebreaker Krišjānis Valdemārs
The sea icebreaker "Krišjānis Valdemārs" in the 1920s and 1930s was the only new Latvian steamer. On January 13, 1926, he made his first voyage from the port of Riga. The icebreaker was intended to free the shipping lanes from the ice in the freezing port of Riga, but as a pride of Latvia it was also used for the escort of the President and members of the government on foreign visits.
After the occupation of Latvia, the ship was nationalized, and when World War II entered Latvia, it was evacuated to Tallinn together with the ships of the Latvian merchant navy. At the end of August 1941, "Krišjānis Valdemārs" left Tallinn for his last trip to Kronstadt. On August 28, it hit a mine and sank.
History of the ship Krišjānis Valdemārs
The British companies William Beardmore and Vickers built the icebreaker in Glasgow from 1924 to 1925. It had a capacity of 1,932 gross registered tons, a length of 60 meters, a width of 17 meters, a draft of 6.7 meters and a power of 5,200 hp. The maximum speed of the ship in open water was 14.4 knots, in hard, smooth ice - 3 knots. The icebreaker, who was entered in the registers of the Latvian fleet, was given the name of Krišjānis Valdemārs (1825-1891), an outstanding promoter and researcher of Latvian maritime development. The first voyage from the port of Riga "Krišjānis Valdemārs" left on January 13, 1926. "Krišjānis Valdemārs" belonged to the Maritime Department of the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Its home port was Riga. The first icebreaker captain Kārlis Cērps (1875-1931) led it to his death, then (1931-1940) the captain was Fricis Veidners (1883-1942) and Pēteris Maurītis (1887-?). After the occupation of Latvia, the ship was nationalized, and when the Second World War entered Latvia, it was evacuated to Tallinn in a caravan together with merchant ships. At the end of August 1941, the icebreaker "Krišjānis Valdemārs" left Tallinn for Kronstadt, collided with a mine on August 28 and died.