The icebreaker Krasin distinguished herself as a rescue ship, exploration vessel, armed wartime escort and a pathfinder on the Northern Maritime Route. In the 1920s, she rescued the icebreaker Lenin and the German passenger ship Monte Servantes that had collided with an iceberg and had been holed. She also rescued survivors of General Umberto Nobile's ill-fated dirigible Italy during its attempt at a expedition to the North Pole. In 1933, Krasin became the first ship to reach the northern shore of Novaya Zemlya.
During World War II, Krasin participated in Arctic convoys. Early in the war the icebreaker crossed the Pacific and passed through the Panama Canal to the east coast of the United States for repairs. She then continued her journey to Great Britain where she was armed with surface and anti-aircraft guns and proceeded to Reykjavik, Iceland to join convoy PQ-15. She escorted the convoy through the North and Barents Seas, around the Kola Peninsula and into Murmansk.
More than 60 books have been written about Krasin, a movie has been made, and a coin and postage stamps have been issued in her honor. She has been fully restored to operating condition. Preparations are underway to sail her to various European ports. She is the only icebreaker maritime museum commemorating the Arctic convoys.
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