Here a mine, complete with its sinking and anchoring apparatus is being dropped over the stern of a mine layer by the elaborate apparatus specially fitted. When it was dropped the vessel must have been moving at some speed, as the wake proves. Britain Laid mines for the protection of her shipping and ports. The photographs in this page were taken on board a steamer which once carried holidaymakers on coastal trips, but was transformed into a mine layer in a surprisingly short time on the outbreak of war. A great splash follows the dropping of the mine into the sea, as can be seen in this photograph. The men of this minesweeper exercised their humour with a piece of chalk just as do the artillerymen on their shells; in the top photograph a quotation from a song ornaments the mine, while on that in the centre is a graphic expression of the hope that a U-boat will take the bait.