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The rebirth of a lost and forgotten WW2 shelter of the Hanko Front

Last summer we successfully located and trial excavated the site of the Hamsters nest ("Hamsterbo") shelter that burned and collapsed during the fighting on the Hanko Front in September 1941.

The fact that we managed to locate the burnt down shelter some 3m:s below ground surface was a feat in itself and we of course eagerly wait for next years (2021) extensive excavation of the site. The collapsed shelter is a true time capsule as it all contains the material remains of the four Scandinavian officers who lived there in 1941.

Today I received the rather promising news that Hanko Front Museum will be applying for a grant to reconstruct the shelter after the excavations in 2021. This is very good news and we are of course eagerly waiting for a positive outcome here.


Reconstructing the burnt down shelter on the basis of the results from the battlefield archaeology excavation is just what we had hoped for. It serves to help vistors to the Hanko Front Museum experience first hand the claustrophobic conditions under which the Swedish Volunteers on the Hanko front lived during the war. Circumstances that were much like those on the frontlines and trenches of WW1 between 1914 and 1918.

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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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