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Museum workers examined a sunken World War II barge - video

Employees from the Museum of Polish Arms in Kołobrzeg have examined the wreck of a German landing barge from the Second World War. The 40-metre-long vessel lies on the seabed, not far from the entrance to Kołobrzeg’s harbour. According to the researchers, the barge was probably used during the evacuation of the German population in
Published: December 14, 2016 - 17:50
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 14:24
Museum workers examined a sunken World War II barge – video

Employees from the Museum of Polish Arms in Kołobrzeg have examined the wreck of a German landing barge from the Second World War. The 40-metre-long vessel lies on the seabed, not far from the entrance to Kołobrzeg’s harbour. According to the researchers, the barge was probably used during the evacuation of the German population in 1945, as part of the large-scale operation ‘Operation Hannibal’.

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Museum scientists came across the wreck of a German barge during works carried out under the project “Recognition of underwater archaeological sites within the framework of AZP research of maritime areas in the area of Kołobrzeg”.. As part of it, between June and August 2016, an area of 9 km² was searched.

Archaeologists have located a number of different vessels, but it was the wreck of a well-preserved German barge, probably lying there since spring 1945, that aroused the greatest interest and turned out to be the most interesting find. The barge was located about 1Mm from the entrance to Kołobrzeg’s harbour, at a depth of just 11-12 metres.

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Now the scientists are facing further work. On the basis of the collected documentation, they will try to find out more about their discovery, because so far it has not been possible to determine exactly what type of equipment we are dealing with.

“We know that it is a German landing barge, but we don’t know what subtype and we still don’t know its number, which would allow us to know the history of the vessel. More than a thousand such barges were produced and they were the workhorses of the Kriegsmarine,” explained Michal Grabowski, head of research.

Based on the data collected, a virtual model of the barge is also to be created, which will be available on homepage of the Museum of Polish Arms in Kołobrzeg.

“For now, we have managed to document the wreck and put it under conservation care. – This is only the beginning of our activities. We will certainly not pull this vessel out. It will remain in its place as an underwater attraction,” concluded Aleksander Ostasz, director of the Museum of Polish Arms

“Kołobrzeg, due to its location in the central part of the southern Baltic coast, has been an important trading centre since the dawn of time. It is here that since the Middle Ages, there were functioning saltworks known throughout Europe. Due to the limited possibility of admission of large ships in the port of Kołobrzeg, some of them had to wait for unloading on a specially designated area outside the port – the roadstead. Strong storms visiting this part of the coast caused numerous accidents and sinking of vessels anchoring in front of the port. Kołobrzeg suffered additional losses “from the sea” due to armed conflicts, which on several occasions led to the destruction of the port itself and the ships moored there.”

Source: museum.kolobrzeg.pl

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About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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