70, a, b, c, d, e & f

Fortification card



(Hanko Cape in the Second World War, Niilo Lappalainen & History of the Hanko Group, T-22005, Military Archives of Finland) 

March 1940 to June 1941 

- On 13th of March 1940 the Headquarters ordered the Navy to oversee the evacuation of the people in Hanko Cape, within the next three days. During the same day, the order was changed and now there was ten days to complete the whole evacuation. 

- The area which was rented to the Soviet Union and needed to be evacuated, contained a bit over 3 000 people. These people were moved from Hanko Cape, by using the only decent road and railroad, which lead out from Hanko Cape. Additionally ice roads were used, as the sea was still frozen and the thickness of ice was 60 centimeters. Day and night trucks, horses, busses and even sleds were carrying people, furniture's, supplies, clothes and dish's out from the area. Additionally few icebreakers were used in the evacuation.

- The military was able to move out its heavy guns, but the task wasn't easy at all. The barrels of the guns in Russarö, which weighted over 30 tons, were pulled to the shore with using only man-power. Everything was moved out from Hanko Cape, including even the remains of the soldiers who had died during the Winter War. The Hanko Cape was officially handed over to Soviet Union on 22nd of March 1940, when the Finnish Professor I. Bonsdorff officially handed over the area to the Soviet General Major M. Moskalenko. In the evening, the first Russian soldiers landed to Hanko with airplanes. 

- The construction of the coastal batteries and fortifications was started quickly from the Russian side. However it became quite soon clear to them that the rented Hanko Cape wasn't really suitable as a naval base. The area was only 4 kilometers wide from its widest point and thus the Finnish forces were able to observe the area too easily. Also during a war, the area would be difficult to defend and wasn't really suitable to start any major attack. 

- The Finnish supplied the Hanko base considerably and additionally the Soviet Union was given permission to use the railroad to Hanko. These kind of transportations were always guarded by a Finnish soldiers in front and behind of the train. It was always a nerve racking experience, when a Russian troops were travelling through the Southern Finland and to Hanko. They could have easily occupied any railway station along their journey, even when the weapons were stored in a separate wagon.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 1

- Looking the above structure from a distance, we walked past it, as it really doesn't look like a military structure. Only a bit more careful look towards that direction revealed the small stones around the position, which are left from the mining job.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 2

- Only a closer look reveals a AA-machine gun position. The roof on top of the position is a later addition and isn't part of the original construction.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 3

- View from another direction into the position.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 4

- A coastal artillery gun position. The communication trench can be seen leaving in the upper part of the picture, towards the ammunition bunker and accommodation area for the gun crew.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 5

- The communication trench has been mined into a rock and reinforced with concrete.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 6

- At the bottom of the communication trench.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 7

- Doorway into the accommodation area.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 8

- Between the two gun positions, there is a position made from concrete. The actual purpose of this position is a bit unclear, as its a very small one. A grown man stand in there, but not much else.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 9

- One of the two coastal artillery gun positions.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 10

- View towards the sea. On the right side of the picture you can seen the island of Västerskär and on the left side of Västerskär, the islands of Bergön and Porsön can be seen dimly.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 11

- Right in the shoreline is the floodlight position, which is in excellent condition, like is the case with the whole coast artillery position.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 12

- View towards west from the floodlight position.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 13

- A short communication trench, which has been mined into a rock, leads into the floodlight position. The trench line is covered with vegetation, but the structure 70, a, b, c, d, e & f as a whole, has survived remarkably well, most likely thanks to the local summer residents, who have not filled the structures.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 14

- View from the floodlight position towards the sea. On the left side of the picture you can see the island of Porsön, which was part of the Finnish advanced positions.

70, a, b, c, d, e & f, Picture 15

- View towards west from the nearby cliffs. The islands of Bergön and Porsön can be seen completely in the picture.


Copyright © 2005, 2006 Kimmo Nummela