Construction of the King Friedrich Wilhelm III Fort №5 was completed in 1886. That year the fort was additionally fortified with reinforced concrete, and an armored cupola was built. The building of the fort was a hexagon, 215 meters long and 105 meters wide. It was fortified bricks, sand, concrete, and earth.
The fort was protected by a 20 meter wide and 5 meter deep ditch. The entrance was protected by a strong fortification. Trees and bushes were planted around the fort to mask it. On the flanks it had two adjacent vaults to house staff and store ammunition. The garrison of the fort consisted of about 300 officers and soldiers. They were armed with 8 cannons, 25 mortar, and 50 machine-guns.
The one-story central building of the fort was comprised of the barracks, the hospital, the kitchen, and ammunition and provisions warehouses. Two interior yards protected the cannons and mortar-guns. All the underground vaults had arch roofs and were built of baked bricks. The troops used the central and the lateral posterns to walk around the fort. On the earth-fortified mound, there were artillery positions with covering for the artillerist and elevators for ammunition as well as lookout turrets.
In 1945, on the eve of the assault on the town, a squadron of 280 mm cannons fired at the town fr om April 2-5. Later, a special commission found 73 hits, but only two of them perforated the walls. It happened only in those places where multiple shots hit the wall.
Among the forts of Koenigsberg, the fort number five was the last to fall. It was situated in the direction wh ere the 43rd Army struck, and it resisted violently. The enemy shot at the important road to Rauchen (modern Svetlogorsk) while the troops marched and carried ammunition. On April 6, assault troops of the 801st and the 806th Squadron approached the fort and blocked it despite heavy casualties. The fort garrison surrendered on the morning of April 5, after a long and cruel battle. For the assault of the fort, fifteen Soviet soldiers received the title of Hero of the Soviet Union.
In 1974 King Friedrich Wilhelm III Fort №5 was put under state protection. Five years later, the fort because a museum of World War II history. A memorial of the Soviet soldiers who died during the assault was erected on an adjacent territory. At the moment the fort is open for visitors.
|Address:||Kaliningrad oblast, Kaliningrad, Bulatova street|