Çimenlik Tabyası (Fort No. 20)

Armament: one 355 mm L/35 gun, one 355 mm L/22 gun, one 240 mm L/22 gun, one 210 mm L/22 gun


Fort Çimenlik in the first half of 1990’s (seen from NW).

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

Fort Çimenlik in 2011 (seen from SW - the direction from which it was shelled by the Alied ships).

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

Fort Çimenlik in 2011 (seen from W).

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

SW corner of Çimenlik castle converted into the artillery fort in 19th century.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

Dungeon of Çimenlik castle corner of which was shot off by HMS Queen Elizabeth on March 18, 1915. The reconstruction made after WWI is still visible.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

Ammunition store and two gun emplacement on the Southern flank of Fort Çimenlik.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

The 355/22 gun emplacement in fort Çimenlik in 2002. Only a piece of barrel, the axis of rotation and the rails are left. Note the corner of the ammunition store ripped off on March 18, 1915 by a 381 mm (15 in.) shell from Queen Elizabeth.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

This close-up picture of the same damaged ammunition store shows very well the structure typical for all 19th century forts in the Dardanelles: the inner part of walls made of brick, the outer of stone and all covered with earth from the front and the top.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

Interior of the damaged ammunition store with some relicts of the original wooden ceiling between the storeys. The fact that the ceiling was not destroyed and the walls were not blackened proves that the ammunition in this store did not explode (what the British and some Turkish sources claim) when the building was hit by Queen Elizabeth.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

The same gun emplacement on the picture taken in late 1920’s. The 355/22 gun’s barrel was blown up by the British during the occupation of the Dardanelles after WWI. Half a century later the destruction was completed by the Turks themselves, who melted the gun. The photograph shows very clearly that as a result of Queen Elizabeth’s hit the ammunition store’s corner only collapsed and the earth covered the hole. Thus the explosion of the ammunition store’s content could not take place. The fact that this damage has never been repaired proves that Fort Çimenlik was excluded from the Dardanelles Fortified Zone’s defense system prior to March 18, 1915.

(Piotr Nykiel's collection)

Another shell from the same salvo which damaged the ammunition store has hit the Northern wall of the castle…

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

...and still remains there.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

A view from the top of the fort’s embankment towards the Southern entrance to the Dardanelles.

(Photo: Piotr Nykiel)

 

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