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> The coastal battery "Tirpitz" - the 280 mm canons
Florin
Posted: December 30, 2003 02:23 am
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One of the stories accessible to kids in the Communist Romania was how the Romanians succeeded to smuggle around the German positions defending the 280 mm coastal canons, and being safe from their range, forced the German forces to surrender, after the Germans blew up the equipment.

Somewhere in Romania I saw control apparatuses belonging to the "Tirpitz" battery. If it was not in the Central Military Museum in Bucharest, it was in Constanta.

Later I learnt that those 280 mm pieces were actually "old" pieces, manufactured to be used on warships during World War I. I forgot how I got this information, but I am somehow puzzled about it. Germany had to destroy her field artillery after 1918, and the German Navy destroyed herself to avoid being captured, at Scapa Flow, in Scotland. So were those 280 mm pieces really since the World War I ?

And most important: had the Romanians any merit in forcing the Germans to hurry up to blow up the canons, or the Germans were about to destroy them anyway, at the moment when that happened?

And another question: what was the caliber of the biggest coastal canons operated by the Romanians?

Florin
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Victor
Posted: December 30, 2003 09:20 am
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According to the memoirs of gen. Costin Ionascu, who commanded the 9th Division (stationed in Dobruja then), he and rear admiral Horia Macellariu had several talks with adm. Brinkman, until the latter finally decided to retreat without an unnecessary fight (which he would have lost considering the forces the Romanians had there).

The biggest guns we had were of 175 mm.
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Florin
Posted: December 30, 2003 08:01 pm
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Thank you.
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tjk
Posted: January 02, 2004 02:38 pm
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I don't know where the guns for the Tirpitz Battery came from, but Germany after WW1 did retain several pre-dreadnought battleships from which these guns may have come from. Also it is possible that these weapons were hidden from the Allied Control Commision.
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dead-cat
Posted: January 03, 2004 01:35 am
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if they are from ww1, the 28cm guns(3 types) were of naval origin and occasionaly used as railroad artillery and stationary shore batteries ("Bruno" type).
the only pre-dreadnoughts with a 28cm main artillery were those of the Braunschweig and Deutschland (1904) class.
1 was stricken '29
3 were stricken '31
1 went to USSR as reparation ('46)
1 was broken up '22
1 was torpedoed '16 (Jütland)
the other 3 were lost post '44


all the ships had reserve barrels because they wore out after 80-120 shots and needed to be replaced.
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leonardus
Posted: January 07, 2004 11:28 am
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And this 175 mm are what ? And where were ?
Please a little more specifications.
Thanks a lot.

Leo.

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According to the memoirs of gen. Costin Ionascu, who commanded the 9th Division (stationed in Dobruja then), he and rear admiral Horia Macellariu had several talks with adm. Brinkman, until the latter finally decided to retreat without an unnecessary fight (which he would have lost considering the forces the Romanians had there).

The biggest guns we had were of 175 mm.
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daveh
Posted: February 14, 2004 01:53 pm
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The 3 guns of the Tirpitz battery at Constanza came from the peacetime battery Tirpitz at Kiel. Another 4 guns of this type were moved from Swinemunde to Norway, and 2 from Fehmarn to near Leningrad.
The guns themselves were 28cm SK L/45. These had been introduced in 1907 for use on Nassau class deradnaughts and the battle cruiser Von der Tann.
Coastal defence guns were allowed under the Versaille Treaty as they were deemed defensive weapons.
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Petre
Posted: December 16, 2015 04:59 pm
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War diary : German Naval Staff Operations Division
Publisher - Washington D.C. : Office of Naval Intelligence, 1948-1955
(Translation of Kriegstagebuch der Seekriegsleitung). Selections ( adapted ) :

1 june 42
19.10 Ceremonial farewell to the former Commanding Admiral Black Sea, Vice-Admiral Fleischer at the railroad station Constantza. Apart from self and all German officers of the station, the following were present: CO, Rom. Naval Division and CO, Rom. Naval Forces with their staffs and CO 9th. Rom. Division. 1st Battery, Naval gunnery Detachment 621 (Marine-Artillerie-Abteilung) ("Tirpitz") provided a guard of honor, while the Rom. Naval Div. provided the band.

20.07
The installation of a captured 203 mm battery is recommended for Sevastopol, so that the 28 cm battery "Tirpitz" which was originally planned for this purpose could be left at Constanta; this appears desirable for political reasons with regard to the head of the Gov. Antonescu.

21.07
At a later date it is planned to replace battery "Tirpitz" at Constanta by a railway battery (28 cm), so that battery "Tirpitz" can then be shifted to the tip of Cape Khersones in place of the former "Maxim Gorki III". The Commander in Chief Kriegsmarine agrees to this plan and the respective orders will go out at once.

29.07
For the time being, Rumanian coastal defense remains in Rumanian hands, ... to approval by the OKW, battery "Breslau" will be transferred to Rumania. Battery "Tirpitz" will be transferred to the Crimea after OKW has given consent.

13 May 1943
A request has been submitted for the transfer of the battery "Tirpitz" to southern France. This battery was expressly promised to the Rumanians by the Fuhrer and assigned to the defense of Constanta. The Chief Kriegsmarine decides that the battery is to remain in Constanta,

August 1944
According to advance report by telephone, battery "Tirpitz" was blasted.
(...)
A report is to be submitted at once giving the reason why Battery "Tirpitz" was abandoned.

6 Sept.
Regarding the mysterious abandonment of Battery "Tirpitz", the former Naval Shore Command Romania (Seekommandant Rumania), Kpt. z.S. Grattenauer reported that the evacuation of the battery was ordered by the Commanding General of Army Group „South Ukraine” who, as Commanding General, Armed Forces, Southeast, was in charge. The order was transmitted by the regional Commander (?), Oberst von Oertzen. Further investigation is necessary.

This post has been edited by Petre on September 23, 2016 09:03 am
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