Publication details

Hold position : Case study of non-destructive archaeological survey and spatial analyses of Austro-Hungarian trenches from april 1915 at Staviska hill (Polish-Slovakian border)



Year of publication 2019
Type Appeared in Conference without Proceedings
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description Carpathian mountains was place of hard fights between three emperors (German, Austro-Hungarian and Russian) during spring of 1915. After one of Russian breakthroughs in Austro-Hungarian lines and an annihilation of 28th infantry regiment near Stebnik (now Slovakia), defensive line was quickly rebuilded at the Staviska hill. Archaeological survey found trenches at the ridge after 100 years in nearly intact condition. Positions of the 4th Tyrolean Rifle Regiment was build from cracked stone, most structures is still well preserved on the line and in close hinterland. Line was occupied for whole month and because Russians never tried to storm there, soldiers have enough time to build strong field fortifications, limited just by terrain and weather. In other words, this site provide an unique opportunity to explore 1) how austro-hungarian army organised building of fortifications at strategically important positions in early spring of 1915; 2) conditions of trench life in Carpathian battlefield and 3) what part of the narrative could and couldn't have been achieved through the used methods. To achieve these aims were aplicated both classical and modern methods of documentation and non-destructive survey. With classical ground survey, consisted of metal detectoring and plan making with help of GPS and Total Station, the area provides opportunity to explore the trench line and a near logistic area, traces of soldiers daily life and possibilities of planned defence against theoretical attack of enemy. Due to use of remote sensing, where we aplicated aerial survey of LiDAR and ortophotomaps, we can survey the trenches in long distance. Thanks to spatial analysis, we can survey e.g. line of sight, slope analysis, elevation and least cost path. We are able to reconstruct positions with the help of virtual reality and comparison with period documentation, manuals and reports. Therefore, we can give a story to place of single event, what happened here in hard times 100 years back.
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