WWII era Soviet Army tank wreckage found in northern Poland

The wreckage of a T-34-85 Soviet tank from the WWII era was unearthed in a forest belonging to the Olsztynek State Forests, northern Poland.

Forest service workers came across metal fragments sticking out of the ground in the vicinity of Kalbornia village. They reported the finding to the local ranger who then notified the forestry authorities.

An on-site verification proved that these were parts of a T-34, a core Soviet tank produced on a massive scale during WWII.

Early in the morning of March 11 a special team supervised by engineers and archaeologists began excavation works. After a few hours of exhausting work the wheels, tracks and chassis came to light.

Initial findings show that this particular tank, serving under the 29th Corps of the Soviet 5th Tank Army, was destroyed in January 1945. Its wreckage was later used as an element of a provisional bridge built over an anti-tank trench, on which other Soviet vehicles passed.

The condition of the wreckage suggests that it was cut to pieces by scrap pickers after WWII, when all types of secondary raw materials were gathered all over Poland under the special ordinance of March 12, 1954.

The Soviet T-34-85 tank was a development version of the T-34 tank. Compared to its predecessor, the vehicle “received” a higher calibre gun which was considerably more effective in a fight against German tanks. T-34-85s were also used by the Polish People’s Army in the years 1943-1945. A Polish TV series, extremely popular in the communist bloc countries titled “Four Tank-Men and a Dog” told the story of a crew of one of these tanks.

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