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Ship ClassM-class Minesweeper
BuilderNeptun Schiffswerft und Maschinenfabrik Gmbh
Yard Number546
Launched23 Mar 1945
Commissioned1 Apr 1945
Displacement582 tons standard; 821 tons full
Length222 feet
Beam30 feet
Draft9 feet
MachineryTwo 3cyl triple expansion engines
Power Output2,150 shaft horsepower
Speed17 knots
Range4,000nm at 10 knots
Armament2x10.5cm L/45 guns, 2x3.7cm L/83 SK C/30 guns, 8x2cm L/65 C/30 machine guns, 1x7.3cm Föhn rocket launcher, 24 mines


ww2dbaseMinesweeper M612 as commissioned into service very late in the war, on 1 Apr 1945, and was assigned to 12th Minesweeper Flotilla. On 4 May 1945, the ship was ordered to set sail for the German Baltic coast line to evacuate German troops surrounded by the Soviets. On the next day, some of the crew mutinied, locking the officers in a cabin. Suspecting that the end of the war was imminent, they set sail for Flensburg, Germany, the temporary capital of Nazi Germany after the death of Adolf Hitler, so that the crew would not needlessly lose their lives when the end was near. They were stopped by a German torpedo boat off the coast of southeastern Denmark, and the crew members responsible for the mutiny were arrested. A quick military trial was held, with 11 crew members found guilty, and all 11 were executed aboard M612 in the evening. Their bodies were dumped into the sea; 7 bodies would drift ashore later and were given a proper burial. After the war, M612 remained in service, clearing mines under the German Mine Sweeping Administration, an organization under the control of the Allied occupation administration. She was broken up for scrapping in the United Kingdom in 1948.

ww2dbaseSource: wehrmacht-history.com

Last Major Revision: May 2023

Minesweeper M612 Interactive Map

M612 Operational Timeline

23 Mar 1945 M612 was launched by Neptun Schiffswerft und Maschinenfabrik Gmbh in Rostock, Germany.
1 Apr 1945 M612 was commissioned into service.
4 May 1945 M612 was ordered to sail to the eastern Baltic Sea to evacuate German troops surrounded by the Soviets.
5 May 1945 Some of the crew members of M612 mutinied, locking their officers in a cabin, so the entire crew would not needlessly lose their lives when the end of the war was near. They were stopped by a German torpedo boat near Sønderborg, Denmark, and 11 of the crew members responsible for the mutiny were arrested. After a quick military trial, all 11 were found guilty and were executed on the ship. Their bodies were dumped into the sea.

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Commenter identity confirmed Alan John Chanter says:
21 Mar 2023 05:47:26 AM

On Saturday 5th May 1945, eleven German sailors were executed at Sonderborg. They had committed mutiny aboard the minesweeper M612 by locking their officers inside to sail to Flensburg. But they were discovered by German torpedo boats and captured. Although the war was only hours away from ending, Grand Admiral Karl Dӧnitz, Hitler’s successor, still needed to display harsh discipline over his armed forces.

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