The ship was laid down as Gerard Callenburgh on 12 October 1938 at the Rotterdamsche Droogdok Mij in Rotterdam and launched on 12 October 1939. While under construction Germany attacked the Netherlands. It was decided to scuttle the ship in Nieuwe Waterweg to prevent it to fall in German hands. The Germans however decided to raise the ship in the summer of 1940 and towed it to Hamburg where she was repaired at the yard of Blohm & Voss. The ship was commissioned on 11 October 1942 and attached to the 5th destroyer flotilla in the Baltic Sea.
31 October 1943 ZH1 and Z27 was sent to France.While passing through the English Channel the ship came under attack by British shore batteries.
On 9 June 1944 the ship and other German destroyers engaged an Allied force near Île de Batz. In the battle she was damaged to the point that the commander gave the order to scuttle her. 36 of her crew perished with the ship.