Pisz military base — Pisz point of resistance, Pisz
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Pisz military base — Pisz point of resistance

Pisz

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An example of modern field fortifications present in the Warmińsko-Mazurskie voivodeship. The structures are characteristic of the period in which they were built (1939–1944), providing an example of the diversity of fortification solutions used during that period. The combat bunker entered to the register of monuments is the only such structure in the region with original, armoured fittings preserved.

History

The first fortifications comprising the military base of Pisz were built in the summer of 1939, and included four bunkers for machine guns. Soon, construction of the base was started, during which a couple of structures were modified. Among other things, garages for antitank cannons were added to two bunkers, and a heavy fortification structure was raised. In addition, earthen posts for heavy machine guns were made, and riflemen and access trenches were dug out. The base was to cover the mobilisation of the German army and protect the area around Pisz against enemy attacks towards the towns of Orzysz and Ruciane-Nida. In connection with the expected offensive of the Sovier army, the fortifications were strengthened in 1944 — an anti-tank trench and trenches with fire posts were dug out. In January 1945, the Pisz military base was abandoned by the German troops virtually without engaging into combat. After 1945, the land on which the unused bunkers were located went to the Polish State Treasury, local government, and private persons. In the next years, part of them were totally or partially destroyed. In 2007, two bunkers comprising the Pisz military base were entered to the register of monuments (a crew bunker of 502 Regelblau type and a combat bunker of 107a type). At present, some of the bunkers of the military base were included to the educational historical route "Pisz locking base", supervised by a local historical association.

Description

The fortifications of the military base of Pisz include bunkers constituting the Pisz Point of Resistance, along with bunkers in the villages of Wiartel and Młynno flanking it from the north and the south (currently, the latter village does not exist). The bunkers were build using topographic features of the area; in some cases they are entirely sunk in the ground (crew bunkers). They are accompanied by fortifications — earthen structures, including: antitank trench, field positions, and riflemen and access trenches. The structures comprising the Pisz military base include crew bunkers for one or two infantry squads, combat bunkers, shelters for antitank cannon with a crew or combat bunker, and remains of an observation tower.Two bunkers are entered to the registry of monuments: heavy fortification structure — combat bunker of 107a type (a two-side casemate for a heavy machine gun with observation dome and flanking ledge), and a crew bunker of Regelbau 502 type for two infantry squads. Both bunkers are made of reinforced concrete. The walls and ceilings of the combat bunker for machine guns are 2 m thick (the headwall is more than 3 m thick). The bunker features original armoured plates (20 cm thick). Inside, there are historically preserved remains of instructions for the crew (12 soldiers) written on the walls. Between the combat chambers, there is an observation post protected by an armoured dome. The structure is in very good technical condition. The crew bunker for two squads of infantry is partially sunk into the ground, its external walls and ceilings are 2 m thick. The structure's capacity was from 20 to 26 soldiers. The observation post is protected with an armoured dome. Inside, apart from the observer's chamber, there are also, among other things, an emergency chamber, and the room of a gas-tight lock. The bunker underwent renovation and adaptation works, and it currently houses a museum exhibition imitating the historical character of the structure.

Access to the structures entered to the register of monuments is limited. The combat bunker is located in a private, fenced estate. Access to the interiors upon arrangement with the owners. The crew bunker is closed, visiting of the interior is possible upon arrangement with the association supervising the bunker (access is free of charge, contact data available by the structure and on the webpage of the association). Other bunkers are accessible and marked as part of the historical route "Pisz Locking Base"

Compiled by Adam Płoski, Area Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Olsztyn, 1.10.2014.



Bibliography

  • A. Płoski, Inwentaryzacja zespołów fortyfikacji wojskowych pochodzących z okresu 1939-1944 z terenu województwa warmińsko - mazurskiego, wchodzących w skład: Pozycji Iławskiej, Pozycji Piskiej, Pozycji Lidzbark Welski, Tom I - II, Olsztyn 2006 (maszynopis, archiwum NID OT w Olsztynie).

General information

  • Type: defensive architecture
  • Chronology: 1939-1944
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Pisz
  • Location: Voivodeship warmińsko-mazurskie, district piski, commune Pisz - miasto
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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