Daniel A. Tanner - Nov 22, 2010
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The Polish fort of Srebrna Gora is a unique example of Prussian military construction. It was also used as an artillery training ground and was considered tourism attraction in the second half of the 19th century. An exhibition is being established in its casemate nowadays.


The mighty fort of Srebrna Gora was built to protect Poland against Austrian armies. Most forts were built in flat land using water as a shield against the enemy. The fort on the mountain of Warowna Gora is therefore a unique example of Prussian military construction. The complex consists of several forts which were built between 1765 and 1777. The central tower of the complex was used as a powder magazine. There was room for 32 tons of gunpowder in the tower.

The fort proved to be very useful in 1807 when the French unsuccessfully tried to capture it. As they could not seize the fort, they at least plundered the town. Because of its impregnability, the fort is called the Gibraltar of Silesia. As reported, in peace times 1760 soldiers were stationed there, during war the number would rise to 3754 and it could go up to 5000.

When the fort lost its importance, it was converted into an artillery training ground. However, it was abandoned in 1867 and remained deserted for decades. In the second half of the 19th century it became a tourism attraction and also an excellent restaurant.

During the World War II Polish officers were kept prisoners there. After the war ended the Polish were afraid that Germans might return so they started to demolish the complex and in 1980s it was closed down altogether. In recent years they have started a transformation of the casemate into an exhibition ground. The authorities also plan to build a congress centre as well as a funicular there.

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