Photo: Bertel Nordenstreng on patrol, probably in the waters of Hitis (Hiittinen). Photographer unknown. Photo by courtesy of Mr Kaarle Nordenstreng.

Hanko 1941

This page is about the scientific  conflict and battlefield archaeology project "Hanko 1941" (2018-2025) in Hanko S. Finland.


The project surveys, documents and excavates remains on both sides of the conflict on the Hanko front 22.6-2.12.1941. 

Behind the frontlines the civilian population faced the horrors of war through prisoner of war camps, in military hospitals and morgues for the fallen soldiers. These rapidly vanishing memories and structures are also documented by the project.


All photos marked "photo Hanko 1941 project" may not be copied or distributed without permission.

WW2 Battlefield -and Conflict Archaeology Excavations


July 13.07-17.07.2020 and 20.07-24.07.2020


August 31.08-04.09.2020

Safe conflict archaeology excavations will be arranged at the Hanko Front Museum in co-operation with Hangö Sommaruni in 2020. We speak English, Finnish and Swedish during the excavation.


This year we also offer daily  lectures (safety issues, forensic archaeology, ethics and mapping and surveying techniques) and a battlefield archaeology field trip to the participants. 

Price only 20 euros/5 days (but you can participate for as many days as you want). No previous knowledge of archaeology is required in order to participate.


Pedagogic WW2 Conflict Archaeology for Schools

September 2020 - May 2021

Visit Hanko Front Museum

Students from Hanko during conflict field school. Photo Jan Fast "Hanko 1941" project.

WW2 Conflict archaeology is an important educational tool in order to get a better understanding of the catastrophic and devastating effects of war for the individual and the community as a whole.


With a grant from the Finnish Cultural Foundation (Uudenmaan maakuntarahasto) we are happy to share our knowledge and work with schools and schoolchildren to increase the knowledge of the traces of war in the immediate surroundings of schools in the Uusimaa region during 2020-2021.

Contact us via at for more information about our educational packages.

Surveying the battle of Bengtskär 

Drone video from 17th of May 2019

by BA Aleksi Rikkinen

Academic theses

The authors are responsible for the contents in their respective works and the texts  do not represent the views or general research results of the "Hanko 1941" project. 


Feel free to contact the authors directly if you have ay questions or disagree with issues that are presented in the papers. Your input is valuable for the students and helps them to advance on their scientific journey.

"Tvärminnen vuoden 1941 venäläiset sotavainajat 

Arkeologin etiikka hautakaivauksilla"

BA thesis about ethics and the conflict archaeology of war graves.

Elisa Melasniemi 

Turku Open University 20.4.2020 (in Finnish)

"Taistelukentältä konservointistudioon

Hangon hautalöytöjen tutkimus ja konservointi" 

Thesis about the conservation of items found on the bodies of  the repatriated Soviet soldiers in Tvärminne.

Jarno Huusko.

Metropolia University of Applied Sciences 12.5.2020 (in Finnish)

"Bakom främsta linjen - Militärläger i Hangö från II:a världskriget som konfliktarkeologiska objekt"

BA thesis about the materiality of a DRK dumpsite inside the German WW2 transition camp on Cape Tulliniemi, Hanko S. Finland.

BA Fanny Fagerholm

Umeå Universitet 24.9.2019 (in Swedish)

Death, Burial and Repatriation

The new "Hanko 1941" exhibition at the Hanko  Front Museum is now open!

Finnish troops attacking a Soviet held island in the Hanko archipelago in the summer of 1941. Photo SA-Kuva.

© 2020 by MA Jan Fast 

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