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> Independence War 1877-1878, Military campaign
Carol I
Posted: June 18, 2005 09:55 am
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QUOTE (Imperialist @ Jun 18 2005, 09:59 AM)
I'm curious, are there tours organised in Romania to these sites specially to pay homage at these monuments? Are there annually held ceremonies there, commemorations? Or are they simply forgotten over the border.

Unfortunately, I do not have knowledge of any Romanian tours or commemorations in Bulgaria. As for the very existence of the monuments, I have found out about them quite recently. I remember that a few years ago I have seen an image of an old postcard with the Romanian chapel at Griviţa and I wondered if it still exists. So I was quite glad to see on the homepage Military Historical Museums in Plevna that it still exists and that a memorial park has been arranged around it.
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Carol I
Posted: July 01, 2005 08:48 pm
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QUOTE (johnny_bi @ Jun 4 2005, 12:30 AM)
I would like to find out some info regarding the whole campaign and the description of battles, etc...

You may take a look at Chapter 5 of the book Istoria Artei Militare indicated by Dragos. The text seems to be available only in Romanian.
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Carol I
Posted: October 29, 2005 05:27 pm
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QUOTE (johnny_bi @ Jun 3 2005, 11:42 AM)
Does someone have extensive information on the military campaign in Bulgaria during the russian-romanian-turkish war ?

Here is a chronolgy of the Romanian participation to the 1877-1878 war:

4 April 1877
In Bucharest is signed a Romanian-Russian convention through which Russia agreed to recognise the political rights of the Romanian state as they resulted from the existing laws and treaties and to withhold and defend the territorial integrity of Romania.

12 April 1877
Russia declared war to the Ottoman Empire.

26 April 1877
Following provocations, the Romanian batteries open fire on the Ottoman artillery across the Danube.

29 April 1877
The Assembly declared the state of war between Romania and the Ottoman Empire.

30 April 1877
The Senate passes a similar motion regarding the state of war between Romania and the Ottoman Empire.

8 May 1877
The mobilisation of the Romanian Army is completed. It was 100,000 strong out of which 58,700 were part of the operational army.

9 May 1877
The Parliament proclaimed the state independence of Romania.
The Assembly passes the law instituting the Order of the Star of Romania.

10 May 1877
Prince Carol sanctioned the state independence and the law instituting the Order of the Star of Romania.

8 July 1877
The Russian army began the attack on Plevna.

19 July 1877
Faced with difficulties, the Russian Grand Duke Nicholas sent a telegram to Prince Carol asking for the intervention of the Romanian Army.

20 July 1877
The 4th Romanian Division crossed the Danube and assumed fighting positions at Nicopole.

16 August 1877
At Gorni-Studen takes place a meeting between Prince Carol, the commander of the Romanian Army, and Grand Duke Nicholas, the commander of the Russian troops. It was agreed that the army operating against Plevna to be under the command of Prince Carol, assisted by the Romanian general Alexandru Cernat and the Russian general Zotov.

20 August 1877
The Romanian divisions crossed the Danube on a pontoon bridge built at Siliştioara, near Corabia.

27 August 1877
The first attack of the Romanian troops at Plevna was carried out by the 13th Dorobanţi Regiment that managed to conquest a hill covering the Griviţa fortifications.

30 August 1877
At 15.00 took place an attack on the Griviţa redoubt known as "the third Griviţa battle".

5-6 September 1877
Prince Carol I and gen. Alexandru Cernat were presented with the Russian Order of St George (third and fourth class, respectively).

6 September 1877
The attack of the Romanian troops on the Griviţa 2 redoubt is repelled by the Ottomans.

7 October 1877
A new attack on Griviţa 2 took place, but the enemy remained on positions.

7-9 November 1877
Several fights took place for the conquest of the Rahova fortifications, a key element in the defence of the Ottoman troops in Bulgaria.

28 November 1877
The fall of Plevna. At noon, Osman Pasha, wounded, messages to the Romanian colonel Mihail Cherchez, his decision to capitulate. 2,138 officers, 43,200 troops, 77 guns and many other weapons were captured.

1 December 1877
The first convoy of Ottoman prisoners (about 4,000) departs from Plevna to Bucharest.

5 December 1877
The Romanian Army was regrouped on new positions.

12 January 1878
The Romanian troops of the 4th and 6th Line Regiments launch a surprise attack and conquer Smârdan, the most important fortification of the defence of Vidin.

19 January 1878
The armistice between Russia and the Ottoman Empire is signed. The Romanian representative was not accepted to take part in the negotiations or at the signing of the document in spite of the fact that the Romanian Army was desperately called by the Russian commander in July 1877 and then participated actively to the fights in Bulgaria.

12-13 February 1878
According to the clauses of the armistice treaty, Romanian troops occupied Vidin and Belogradgik.

19 February 1878
The peace treaty between Russia and the Ottoman Empire is signed at San Stefano without the participation of other interested states, including Romania. The treaty recognised the independence of Romania, Serbia and Montenegro and the autonomy of Bulgaria.

1 June - 1 July 1878
A peace congress took place in Berlin with the participation of Russia, Turkey, Austro-Hungary, Italy, France, England and Germany. Romania was not invited and represented under the pretext that her independence was not recognised. Only a Romanian delegation led by Ion C. Brătianu has presented the Romanian cause.

1 July 1878
The peace treaty is signed by the participants of the Berlin Congress. It recognised the independence of Romania and the Romanian authority over the Dobrogea, Danube Delta and the Island of Serpents in the Black Sea. At the same time, the treaty stipulated the Russian occupation of the new counties in the south of Bessarabia (Cahul, Bolgrad and Ismail) that were previously restored to Moldova in 1856. They will become again part of Romania only in 1918.

29 July 1878
According to report no. 458 of the War Minister (General Alexandru Cernat) and the diary of the Council of Ministers no. 1 of 27 July, the return of the Romanian Army to peacetime activities is decreed from 5 August 1878.
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Carol I
Posted: November 24, 2005 10:08 pm
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Fragment from an old movie about the Independence War (from the National Centre for Cinematography):

Independenţa României (ca. 25 MB)
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Agarici
Posted: November 29, 2005 09:42 pm
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QUOTE
Carol I,Oct 29 2005, 05:27 PM


19 July 1877
Faced with difficulties, the Russian Grand Duke Nicholas sent a telegram to Prince Carol asking for the intervention of the Romanian Army.

19 January 1878
The armistice between Russia and the Ottoman Empire is signed. The Romanian representative was not accepted to take part in the negotiations or at the signing of the document in spite of the fact that the Romanian Army was desperately called by the Russian commander in July 1877 and then participated actively to the fights in Bulgaria.



The original text of the telegram (still existent in the Romanian archives), sent on 19/31 July 1877 by the Grand Duke Nicholas to Prince Charles:

“19/7 1877. Urgent. Tirnovo. Prince Charles de Roumanie ŕ l’endroit oů se trouvera. Les Turcs, ayant amassé les plus grandes masses a Plevna, nous abîment. Prie de faire fusion, démonstration et, si possible, passage du Danube que tu désires faire, entre Djoula [Jiul] et Corabia. Cette demonstration est indispensable pour faciliter mes mouvements, Nicolas” - National Archives, Bucharest, Fund Carol I – personals, folder V-I-103, apud Constantin Bacalbaşa, Bucureştii de altadată, edited by Aristiţa and Tiberiu Avramescu, Bucharest, Editura Eminescu, 1987, vol. 1 (1871-1877), p. 253

An official Romanian version - from Milea, Pascu, Ceauşescu (ed.) Istoria militară a poporului Român, Bucharest, Editura Militară, 1987, vol. IV, p. 674:
“Prinţului Carol al României, în locul unde se află Cartierul general român. Turcii, adunând cele mai mari mase de trupe la Plevna, ne zdrobesc. Rog să faci fusiune, demonstraţiune şi, dacă se poate, să treci Dunărea cu armata, după cum doreşti. Între Jiu şi Corabia demonstraţiunea aceasta este neapărat necesară pentru înlesnirea miscărilor mele. Nicolae”

“19/7 1877. Urgent. To prince Charles of Romania, in the place where the Romanian HQ is. The Turks, gathering massive forces at Plevna, are crushing us. Please make a demonstration of force, a merging of our troops and if possible the crossing of Danube as you wish. This demonstration of force is indispensable between the river Jiu and Corabia, in order to facilitate my movements. Nicholas"

This post has been edited by Agarici on November 30, 2005 03:10 pm
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Agarici
Posted: November 29, 2005 10:47 pm
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QUOTE (Carol I @ Oct 29 2005, 05:27 PM)


26 April 1877
Following provocations, the Romanian batteries open fire on the Ottoman artillery across the Danube.



On 26 April/8 May, the first shot was fired from Calafat by the cannon number 1 from the battery number 2, 1st Artillery regiment, cannon commanded by the 2nd lieutenant Constantin Vasiliu. The batteries number 1 and 6 from the same regiment quickly joined the gun fire. Until the end of the day the cannons from the three batteries fired more than 130 salvoes on the town of Vidin - Milea, Pascu, Ceauşescu (ed.) Istoria militară a poporului Român, Bucharest, Editura Militară, 1987, vol. IV, p. 634

From that moment on, Romania was de facto at war with the Ottoman Empire.

This post has been edited by Agarici on November 30, 2005 10:52 am
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Agarici
Posted: November 30, 2005 08:35 am
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Since the Independence War (Russian-Romanian-Turkish War, 1877-1878) seems to me one of the most interesting developement from the Romanian modern military history, I will try to make a few contributions to what has been said until now. I will also try to add some facts to the usefull chronology presented by Carol I.
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Agarici
Posted: November 30, 2005 10:29 am
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[QUOTECarol I,Oct 29 2005, 05:27 PM]
QUOTE

Here is a chronolgy of the Romanian participation to the 1877-1878 war:



10 May 1877
Prince Carol sanctioned the state independence and the law instituting the Order of the Star of Romania.

8 July 1877
The Russian army began the attack on Plevna.

16 August 1877
At Gorni-Studen takes place a meeting between Prince Carol, the commander of the Romanian Army, and Grand Duke Nicholas, the commander of the Russian troops. It was agreed that the army operating against Plevna to be under the command of Prince Carol, assisted by the Romanian general Alexandru Cernat and the Russian general Zotov.

20 August 1877
The Romanian divisions crossed the Danube on a pontoon bridge built at Siliştioara, near Corabia.


“Asta-i muzica ce-mi place.”
Sunday 15/27 May 1877. Prince Charles was inspecting the Romanian artillery positions at Calafat, when the Turkish artillery open fired and three shells exploded close to him; the prince calmly raised his kepi, saluting the Turkish artillery men. Advised by the ministry of war, gen. Cernat, to take cover, he answered “that’s the music/the sound I like”, continuing the inspection. After receiving gen. Cernat’s report on the event, the Council of Ministers proposed Prince Charles to be awarded with “Virtutea Militară” medal - Constantin Bacalbaşa, Bucureştii de altadată, edited by Aristiţa and Tiberiu Avramescu, Bucharest, Editura Eminescu, 1987, vol. 1 (1871-1877), p. 243.

On 20 August/1 September 1877, following the negotiations from 16/28 and 17/29 august between the Russian Emperor (Alexander II) and Prince Charles of Romania, the Russian Western Army, operating in the Plevna area, became the Russian-Romanian Western Army (generically known as Western Army), and is put under the command of Prince Charles, having as Chief of Staff the Russian general P. D. Zotov - Milea, Pascu, Ceauşescu (ed.) Istoria militară a poporului Român, Bucharest, Editura Militară, 1987, vol. IV, p. 675.

This post has been edited by Agarici on December 06, 2005 04:13 pm
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Carol I
Posted: November 30, 2005 10:50 am
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QUOTE (Agarici @ Nov 30 2005, 09:35 AM)
Since the Independence War (Russian-Romanian-Turkish War, 1877-1878) seems to me one of the most interesting developement from the Romanian modern military history, I will try to make a few contributions to what has been said until now. I will also try to add some facts to the usefull chronology presented by Carol I.

Nice initiative, Agarici. :)
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Agarici
Posted: December 02, 2005 11:07 am
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QUOTE (Carol I @ Oct 29 2005, 05:27 PM)
Here is a chronolgy of the Romanian participation to the 1877-1878 war:


10 May 1877
Prince Carol sanctioned the state independence and the law instituting the Order of the Star of Romania.

8 July 1877
The Russian army began the attack on Plevna.



During the initial stages of the war the Ottoman Danube monitors played an important role in bombarding the Northern bank of the Danube and in hampering the allies’ communications and supply routes. So, during the night of 13/25-14/26 Mai 1877 two torpedo boats launched an attack on two Turkish monitors stationed on the Măcin channel. One of them was the Russian “Xenia” torpedo boat and the other the Romanian “Rândunica” - renamed “Csarievici”/”Ţarievici” (launched in 1874, built in Great Britain), which, together with the rest of the Romanian Danube Flotilla was lend to the Russian Imperial Navy (”with the inventory”, together with their crews, at the begining of the war, to be returned at the end of the ostilities). Onboard of „Csarievici”/”Rândunica” was the Romanian major Ioan Murgescu (born at Buzău, 1846-1913), the deputy commander of the Romanian Flotilla. He was a Brest naval academy graduated and was detached to the Russian Danube Fleet Command; as an experienced Danube navigator, he was coopted to participate at this expedition. In that night ”Csarievici”/”Rândunica” managed to sink, with two torpedoes, the Ottoman monitor (armoured gunboat) ”Duba-Seifi”/”Hivizi-Rahman”. The ship, built at Bordeaux in 1868, was armed with four Krupp cannons and had a crew of 120 men an 12 officers. For his actions major Murgescu was awarded with the knight cross of the Russian ”Vladimir” order (with swords). After the war, he became commander of the Romanian Royal Navy (1888) and reached up to the rank of rear-admiral (and vice-adimiral, after retirement) - after Constantin Bacalbaşa, Bucureştii de altadată, edited by Aristiţa and Tiberiu Avramescu, Bucharest, Editura Eminescu, 1987, vol. 1 (1871-1877), p. 245

Note: both torpedo boats used ”torpile cu scondru” (any English translation availble?): the torpedoes were attach to the boats by some extensible rods (two by each ship) and were detonated by a pirotechnical charge at the contact with the enemy vessel (so they were not floating, launched torpedoes).

EDIT: According to Wikipedia, the English term is “spar torpedoes”:
"The first torpedoes driven at the target were spar torpedoes – the explosive device was on the end of a spar up to 40 feet long projecting forward under the water from the attacking vessel. When driven up against the enemy and detonated a hole would be caused below the water line. These devices were used in the American Civil War." - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torpedo

This post has been edited by Agarici on December 06, 2005 11:39 am
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Imperialist
Posted: December 02, 2005 01:55 pm
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QUOTE (Agarici @ Dec 2 2005, 11:07 AM)
Note: both torpedo boats used ”torpile cu scondru” (any English translation availble?): the torpedoes were attach to the boats by some extensible rods (two by each ship) and were detonated by a pirotechnical charge at the contact with the enemy vessel (so they were not floating, launched torpedoes).

Its very interesting, they used Whitehead torpedoes.
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Agarici
Posted: December 02, 2005 07:07 pm
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QUOTE (Imperialist @ Dec 2 2005, 01:55 PM)
QUOTE (Agarici @ Dec 2 2005, 11:07 AM)
Note: both torpedo boats used ”torpile cu scondru” (any English translation availble?): the torpedoes were attach to the boats by some extensible rods (two by each ship) and were detonated by a pirotechnical charge at the contact with the enemy vessel (so they were not floating, launched torpedoes).

Its very interesting, they used Whitehead torpedoes.


Actually they didn’t. Indeed, according to Wikipedia, the first recorded successful use of a Whitehead (floating, launched, self-propelled) torpedo was during the same Russian-Turkish War; in January 1877, a Russian torpedo boat sunk the Turkish steamer “Intibah” with a torpedo of that type. But neither was that vessel either one of those to which I was refering in my previous post, nor was “Rândunica” armed with Whitehead torpedoes.

Judging by the date when the action took place and also by other elements, I think “Intibah” was sunk in the Black Sea.

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Imperialist
Posted: December 02, 2005 07:52 pm
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QUOTE (Agarici @ Dec 2 2005, 07:07 PM)
Actually they didn’t. Indeed, according to Wikipedia, the first recorded successful use of a Whitehead (floating, launched, self-propelled) torpedo was during the same Russian-Turkish War;

Well, according to T.C. Vacarescu a Whitehead torpedo was used in the attack. And also according to him, besides Xenia and Randunica, Alaftchik and Ghighit (both russian) also took part in that attack.

take care
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Carol I
Posted: December 05, 2005 06:07 pm
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QUOTE (Agarici @ Dec 2 2005, 12:07 PM)
... Onboard of „Csarievici”/”Rândunica” was the Romanian major Ioan Murgescu (born at Buzău, 1846-1913), the deputy commander of the Romanian Flotilla. He was a Brest naval academy graduated and was detached to the Russian Danube Fleet Command; as an experienced Danube navigator, he was coopted to participate at this expedition. ...
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Carol I
Posted: December 06, 2005 11:49 am
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