Primary artillery fort GHW XI Duńkowiczki, Duńkowiczki
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Primary artillery fort GHW XI Duńkowiczki

Duńkowiczki

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The well-preserved GHW XI fort presents high scientific values as one of the two artillery forts enclosed by two ramparts, erected during the third stage of construction of the fortress and preserved in the Fortress of Przemyśl. It participated in a combat during the first and third siege in 1914 and 1915. As a crucial part of the system of fortifications which formed the Fortress of Przemyśl, it remains a valuable historical monument of European importance.

History

In the years 1854-1855 fortifications of the first fortified settlement were erected around Przemyśl. West of Duńkowiczki village, in the northern part of the ring, an artillery sconce no. 11 of the FS (Feuer-Schanze) type was erected. In 1878 the sconce was transformed into a provisional artillery sconce XI “Duńkowiczki”, while in the years 1886-1887 into a permanent, two-rampart major artillery fort GHW XI “Duńkowiczki”. It is marked as Lagerfort XI (Duńkowiczki) on the Festung-Umgebungs-Plan (fortress map). In the years 1902-1908 the fort underwent modernisation. Two armoured batteries on the flanks of the infantry rampart and two armoured casemates on the flanks of the upper rampart were erected. In place of a demolished defensive wall with a gate and gorge caponier, a new caponier flanking the barracks was added to the barracks’ wall. The task of the fort was to protect the road to Cracow, hills on the forefield and interfields stretching towards fort XII and XIa. In 1909 the fort was armed with six 15 cm cannons of the M.61 type on tall trailers on the upper rampart, six 6 cm casemate cannons of the M.99 type in casemates, four 8 cm cannons of the M.02 type in extendable and rotating Senkpanzer towers, six 8 cm casemate cannons of the M.98 type on trailers for small embrasures in head and gorge caponiers as well as four machine guns of the M.7 MG type. The fort was manned by 1 infantry company, 146 gunners and 9 pioneers (sappers). During the first siege of the fortress (18 September - 9 October 1914) the fort XII, after heavy artillery gunfire, was unsuccessfully stormed by the Russian infantry on 7-8 October 1914. Before surrendering of the fortress during the second siege (9 November 1914 - 22 March 1915) casemates and the gorge caponier had been blown up. During the third siege (19 May - 4 June 1915), on 30 May 1915, after being shelled with 42 cm cannons and damaged by heavy artillery, the fort was taken over by the German 11th Bavarian Infantry Division. In the years 1920-1939 armoured towers were dismounted. 2 towers were fixed in the Fortress of Osowiec and 1 in Silesian fortifications. After World War II demolitions of brick component part of the fort were carried out. In the 1980s walls enclosing casemates of the barracks were rebuilt and passed over to an agricultural society. Later, they housed a mushroom farm. Currently, the Association of Fortress Communes of the Fortress of Przemyśl is conducting renovation works at the fort.

Description

The GHW (Gürtelhauptwerk) XI “Duńkowiczki” is a two-rampart, armoured, artillery fort, erected as part of the group fort system. The fort is located in the western part of Duńkowiczki village, approx. 900 m from the Przemyśl - Cracow route.

The fort has an area of approx. 5.2 ha and was erected on a pentagonal floor plan with a gorge section angled to form a tenaille. The work is surrounded by a dry moat. The fort’s gorge is enclosed by barracks with casemates, originally housing residential rooms of a commander, officers and soldiers, a dressing point, a kitchen, 2 food warehouses and 2 toilets. There is an entrance hall along the axis; a corridor with entrances to casemates and four niches of munitions lifts extends along the exposed wall. Flanks of the barracks feature sally ports to yards in front of the lower rampart dedicated to infantry and housing munitions warehouses with laboratories. A postern leading to the main bunker is located along the extension of the entrance hall. Its casemates housed 2 residential rooms of soldiers, 2 emergency bunkers, a toilet and a portable munitions warehouse. Sally ports to both yards - currently walled-up - and a postern leading to the non-preserved axial caponier extend from the bunker. The barracks and the main bunker are sheltered by means of an earth rampart. Positions of 15 cm cannons of the M.61 type, partitioned by three transverses housing emergency bunkers with munitions lifts, were located in the upper rampart above the barracks. A cannon lift was located in the bunker along the fort’s axis. Ruins of casemates are located in the rampart’s flanks. Armoured batteries (the western one is partially ruined) with positions of 4 Senkpanzer towers and 2 observation towers have survived on corners of the lower rampart. Entrances to posterns leading to non-preserved flank caponiers are located in the battery’s casemates. Casemates of barracks, a hall, posterns and emergency bunkers feature concrete vaults. Armoured batteries feature concrete ceilings resting on steel double-t beams. The façade of the barracks features semi-circular casemate bays, originally terminating in brick walls with secondary windows and doors.

The fort is available for viewers except for barracks that are going to be made available after the completion of renovation. It forms a part of the black fortress trial as well as the cycling path which runs between the various forts that formed the Fortress of Przemyśl.

compiled by Adam Sapeta, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Rzeszow, 24-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Bobusia B., Gosztyła M., Zub M. Plany Twierdzy Przemyśl, Przemyśl 2004
  • Bogdanowski J. Sztuka obronna, Kraków 1993.
  • Bogdanowski J. Architektura obronna w krajobrazie Polski od Biskupina do Westerplatte, Warszawa - Kraków 1996.
  • Bogdanowski J. Twierdza Przemyśl, w: Teka konserwatorska Polska południowo-wschodnia, t. 4, Rzeszów 1991.
  • Brzoskwinia W., Idzikowski T., Środulska-Wielgus J., Wielgus K. Wartości zabytkowej Twierdzy Przemyśl, w: Informator regionalny Twierdza Przemyśl, wyd. II, Rzeszów 1999.
  • Forstner F., Twierdza Przemyśl, tł. Bańbor J., Warszawa 2000.
  • Idzikowski T. Architectura et Ars Militaris 11. Twierdza Przemyśl. Fort XI „Duńkowiczki”, Przemyśl 2004.
  • Idzikowski T., Twierdza Przemyśl. Powstanie. Rozwój. Technologie, Przemyśl 2004.
  • Sapeta A. Zestawienie obiektów Twierdzy Przemyśl, w: Informator regionalny Twierdza Przemyśl, wyd. II, Rzeszów 1999.

General information

  • Type: defensive architecture
  • Chronology: 1854-1855
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Duńkowiczki 90
  • Location: Voivodeship podkarpackie, district przemyski, commune Orły
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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