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  Home > History> Operation Shingle > The minesweepers > The minesweeping > USS Swerve

 “where the fleet goes, we’ve been

Probably there is no more eloquent phrase to describe the work of the minesweepers during the wars. Every military amphibious operation must be preceded and associated with a mine clearing operation.

For Operation Shingle it was the same: during the day preceeding the landing, two fleets of minesweeper patrolled incessantly the waters off the landing beaches; they created two safe channels for the landing parties. Many mined areas were left intact to act as a defense against possible sea attacks.

By the 31st of January, when the majority of the American minesweepers left the area, a total of 34 mines had been removed over an area of 82 square miles. Despite the fact that on the 4th of June the Allied forces entered Rome, the deadly minesweeping work doesn’t cease. Minesweeping continued until the 5th of August and involved at least 2 AM Units and 6 YMS Units daily.

The first ship to be sunk in Anzio waters was a minesweeper, the USS Portent (AM-106) during the landship operation of 22th january 1944. The fate decreed that also the last would be one of her sister ship: USS Swerve (AM-121) on the 9th july of 1944. 

USS Staff on 22th february 1944 USS Steady off Sicily, 12 july 1943 Minesweeping in Korea, 1950 Minesweeping in Korea, 1950