Archaeologists discover numerous artefacts while revisiting the site of the Battle of Kunersdorf

Archaeologists from Collegium Polonicum in Słubice revisited the site of the Battle of Kunersdorf in a project lasting since 2009 aimed at identifying the place of a mass grave where the fallen soldiers were buried. So far they managed to locate earthworks surrounding the camp of the Russian troops but last year they managed to locate and document over 2000 artefacts associated with the fights.

Fragment of a Russian bayonet (by G. Podruczny)

The Battle of Kunersdorf (presently Kunowice in Western Poland) took place August 12th 1759 between the armies of Russia and Austria against Prussian army of Frederick II The Great. It was one of the bloodiest battles of the Seven Years’ War with over 130000 soldiers engaged in the fights and over 10000 dying in its course.

Russian orthodox cross (by G. Podruczny)

Most of the fieldwork involves the use of metal detectors, that allowed to locate and recover over 2000 artefacts among which almost half constitute lead bullets. Other finds connected with the bloody event are cannonballs, case shots and their fragments as well as shards of grenades and fragments of hand-arms such as rifles, bayonets and broadswords. One of the common find are also uniform buttons, which summed up to over 200 pieces so far. One of the most valuable finds – as head of the project, Grzegorz Podruczny, PhD of Collegium Polonicum states – is a  18th century orthodox cross, belonging presumably to one of the Russian soldiers. Archaeologists collected also other finds, unrelated with the event of the battle, such as a Prussian coin minted in the year of the Kunersdorf Battle, a collection of 18th-19th century smoking pipes and lead toys such as soldiers and even tank.

Prussian coin, 1/3 of a Thaler, struck in the year of the battle (by G. Podruczny)

(after Nauka w Polsce & G. Podruczny)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.