The coast artillery during World War I
On August 1916
On 7 September Balchik and Kavarna were shelled by two Russian destroyers, Bystriy e Gromkiy, sinking a towable barge and damaging four mahonas at Kavarna. The head of the Bulgarian Fleet, col. Kirkov ordered to place at Balchik 2 – 87mm field guns of the Shumenski heavy artillery regiment under command of cpt. Petrov. On 9 September the attack was repeated against Balchik, where at that time there were no Bulgarian coastal artillery to return the fire, but the destroyers were repelled by seaplanes. The same day col. Kirkov asked that the coast artillery was reinforced with long range fortress guns of great calibre. On 16 September he received a two-guns 150mm German battery, soon followed by another two batteries of the same kind. Unfortunately Gen. Field Marsh. Mackensen soon took these batteries back, since it was impossible to find an agreement about who should have the operational command of them.
Therefore col. Kirkov had to do with what he had got, and on 23 September the 2 – 100mm L/50 coast guns were removed from their emplacement at Sv. Troitsa, and were sent by sea to Balchik, where they were placed in the cape east of the Balchik, in order to defend both the harbour and the bay. In place of them a 150mm two-guns armoured cupola captured in Dobrudja by the 3rd Army was mounted south of Galata, under the command of cpt. Rusinov, who untill then had commanded the 228mm battery.
On 22 October
the Romanian town of
On 13 December a Russian squadron composed by the protected cruiser Pamyat’ Merkuriya and the destroyers Bystriy e Gromkiy, shelled the harbour and the town of Balchik, coming into the range of the Bulgarian 100mm coast battery. In spite of the great superiority of the Russian firepower (12 – 152mm L/45, 6 – 102mm L/60, 12 – 75mm and some minor guns against only 2 – 100mm L/50 guns), the Bulgarian battery commander, cpt. Georgi Radkov, engaged the enemy for an hour and half, firing 186 shots and hitting the ships with three shells. Also one of the Bulgarian guns was hit, and a soldier was slightly wounded. The harbour facilities and the town itself were seriously damaged, and many peoples were killed or wounded. After this fighting, cpt. Radkov was promoted commander of the 240mm L/45 battery.
further raids of the Russian fleet, and expecially to repell landings, that
were regarded as possible, even after the liberation of the Dobrudja and the
occupation of most of the Romanian coast, new minefield were laid down. Just
after the 13 December raid, 24 mines were laid on the approaches to the
Balchik harbour. By late January, 91 mines were laid south of Kaliakra, and
further 115 around Balchik, Kavarna and Kaliakra. Finally 11 mines were laid
defence of the Black Sea were increased also in 1917, even if, after the
February Revolution, the Russian pressure along the
At the same
time two 150mm L/40 Krupp guns, nicknamed “Adam” and “Eve”, were placed at Sarafovo,
to strengthen the defence of the the Bay of Burgas. They came from the
Macedonian Front, where they had been assigned to the defence of the area of
Treaty of Brest Litovsk, signed on 15 December 1917 and become effective on 3
September 1918, signing the Salonika armistice,
artillery had no increase during the war. The torpedo gunboat Nadezhda stood without armament, while
one of the torpedo boats, Shumniy,
on 11 September 1911 struck a mine in the