The mines were visually identified by divers as airdropped Mk. 7 seamines. The sympathetic detonation left no doubt that the explosives were still intact.
The following historic anecdote supports the origin of the mines off Samsø:
Christian Christiansen’s mother lived on Samsø. When she became ill, he wanted to visit her but it was not an easy journey. The dangers of striking mines were ever present, and much was done to take care of ships and passengers:
“On April 8, 1944 I travelled to Samsø to see my mother, who was very ill. The state railways’ two large ferries which sailed between Aarhus and Kalundborg, with calls at Samsø, had been replaced by a small boat because of the mine danger and fuel shortage. It was a wooden ship with sails and motor, which only operated every other day and could take 40 passengers. One could only get on board if the journey was essential.”
“I was fortunate to get on the boat and we had a minesweeper sweeping ahead of us the whole voyage. It was not a safe voyage; had we struck a mine, I think the chances of being rescued were very poor. This proved to be true, as the boat later stopped sailing on the route. On the way back to its homeport of Aalborg, it struck a mine off Tørnæs lighthouse and went down with its four man crew.”
“I failed to meet my mother because she had passed away the night before. I prepared my self to travel back to Aarhus the following day, when the boat was scheduled to sail back again.”
“I spend the night at my brother’s house. That night we heard the sound of aeroplanes and the next morning my brother told me that I could not leave the island today: “There have been aircraft, so the boat do not sail until a minesweeper has sailed the waters a few times”
“Sure enough, when I inquired at the office I got it confirmed. I had to stay, and did not leave the island until after my mothers funeral”
As suggested in this report the allied laid airdropped seamines at night off Samsø Island, of which 3 were disposed on Saturday - 66 years later.
Courtesy of the Danish National Museum 2005