During the last week of September 2021 we finished the excavations near Hanko Front Museum. A reconstruction of the shelter will now be built by the Hanko Front Museum on the excact spot and based on the information gathered during two field seasons of excavations!
The weather was quite good for the season and both the excavation and documentation of the charred floor level of the shelter could be carried out in idea conditions. The finds were of course not as plentiful as in July but very important in that we now have definite proof of three soldiers manning the shelter at the time of the fire.
Archaeology student Elisa Melasniemi with one of the three spoon/fork combos that were found during the last days of the excavation of the Hamsterbo shelter. The items, and a messkit were found near the stove where they had been left 80 years ago. Photo Jaakko Ervasti/Hanko 1941 project.
Some 20 students accompanied by teachers from two different schools in Helsinki participated in the excavation for three conscutive days. The students researched three frontline hotspots to gather more information about the research area prior to upcoming excavations 2022-2025.
Lithuanian conflict archaeologist Gediminas Petrauskas (left) supervised his own trial excavation on a wartime tentsite together with students from Kallion lukio and Helsingin Kuvataidelukio. Photo Elisa Melasniemi/Hanko 1941 project.
Just before the end of the excavation Hanko 1941 cartographer Aleksi Rikkinen documented and mapped the entire area research area and of course also the floor level of the "Hamsterbo" shelter.
The charred floorboards of the "Hamsterbo" shelter. The entrance can be seen on the left hand side and the stove standing on a couple of bricks to the right of the entrance. Photo Aleksi Rikkinen/Hanko 1941 project.
The scarred landscape of war around "Hamsterbo". Photo Aleksi Rikkinen/Hanko 1941 project.