"Kerch Brest". Heroic defense of Adzhimushkay quarry

Kerch Adzhimushkay

Radio-sos message without interruption
A cry for help: “To the people of the Soviet country !!!
We perish from hunger, thirst, suffocation and explosions,
But do not give up! Homeland holy faithfully! "

Adzhimushkay. The spirit of the holy struggle was not broken.
The night of the dungeons keeps the memory of fallen soldiers -
The ghost warriors of the Kerch quarries,
Following duty, descended into fierce hell.

Forty second. The Twenty Fifth of May is in darkness.
Thousands of souls under the blows of enemy bombs,
In the stench and horror of the poison of the German attack,
Blood soaked in history those catacombs.

In a feminine voice through meter thick:
“The citadel is doomed to a living sarcophagus.
And in confirmation of the captivity - the humility of power,
We are waiting on the surface of the white saving flag. "

To Vienna with a bayonet! Legendary order of the commander ...
The paint was found ... And the enemy saw in confusion:
From boulders, to the light, soared over the wounded world
Indomitable and threateningly scanting.

Faces in the stone - the shell rock breathes.
Lips suck drops of moisture from the smoked walls.
Gas More pumps a poisoned fan.
Survive! Ready for battle to rise from his knees.

The torch of hope in the hearts, the pain in the tormented lungs:
This loop will be broken by the Army.
Radiogram pierced century epoch,
But did not hear the call of the Big Earth.

Here in the spring old wounds are exposed ...
And stately gazing fighters sculptures;
Tulips shout in the wormwood victorious salute
In honor of the garrison of the dead who have gone into the darkness ...

Elvira Maladzhanova

For almost 170 days, the heroic defense of Kerch Brest - Adzhimushkay quarries continued (from 16 of May 1942 of the year to 31 of October of 1942 of the year). Adzhimushkay is a settlement in 5 kilometers from Kerch (administratively considered to be part of the city), near which are located the Large and Small Adzhimushkay quarries. When the Kerch Peninsula was finally liberated from the German invaders, the soldiers of the 56 Army, many of whom fought here in 1942, found it difficult to know the terrain. The village Adzhimushkay was covered in ruins, once the large entrances to the dungeons were blown up. Huge craters were visible all around - traces of powerful explosions that the Nazis were making, seeking to destroy the underground garrison. The entire surface of the Adzhimushkay quarries was covered with fragments of rocks, rubble, Soviet and German shells, shotguns, fragments of mines and shells, and other traces of war. It all said that there were many days, heavy battles, a bitter struggle not for life, but for death. The Red Army men were even more amazed when they got into the underground part of the Adzhimushkay quarries. There they found a lot of unburied bodies, which were in the positions in which they found death. Last defenders were no one to bury.

In the course of the battle for the Kerch Peninsula, which began on 8 in May of 1942, the Crimean Front (KF) forces were defeated. After the attempt to stop the German offensive on the line of the Turkish Wall failed, the leadership of the Crimean Front was forced to make a decision to evacuate the remaining forces from the peninsula. Considering the current situation, the front command issued an order for consistent defense of the two frontiers, the defense of the first of which (the Tarkhan metro station, the Cutherz settlement, Kerch port) was no longer possible due to the capture of most of its forces by that time. Therefore, barrage battles, which allowed to gain time for the removal of the bulk of the KF troops, turned around at the defensive turn: heights 95,1 - 133,3 - Adzhimushkay - Column. Frontier ordered to hold "at all costs".

The command of the defense of this area was assigned to the head of the combat training department of the KF headquarters, Colonel Pavel Maksimovich Yagunov. Yagunov was a member of the battles with the troops of Denikin, parts of the White Cossacks, Basmachs. Characterized as a strong-willed, militarily competent commander and most honest person. Yagunov 14 May was appointed deputy chief of staff of the Crimean Front and on the same day began to prepare individual battalions and strike troops from the reserve personnel. The base of the Yagunov group, in addition to the commanders and political workers of the reserve (several hundred people) and the personnel of the 1 front reserve regiment, were several hundred cadets of military schools (Yaroslavl Aviation School, Voronezh School of Radio Specialists), commanders and fighters of the 276 Infantry Regiment of the NKVD and The 95 frontier detachment, the 65 th separate railway rehabilitation battalion, as well as Red Army soldiers from various units and front units, who had already started to go to the quarries by 13. By the second half of 14 in May, the group of Colonel Yagunov had about 4 thousand people, and some companies were formed entirely from the command personnel. Later, the size of the group grew to 13 thousand people (including part of local residents). But the position of the detachment was complicated by an acute shortage of weapons, even small ones. According to the memoirs of junior lieutenant S.S. Shaidurov, the reserve of the commanders was unarmed. Personal weapon there were only front-line staff and very few from the reserve. The situation was changed for the better only by the beginning of the fighting, part of the reserve was able to be armed with retreating formations at the expense of excess (carried out) weapons - these were rifles, carbines, grenades, light machine guns, several heavy machine guns, mortars. All the fighters with the most serious weapons that Yagunov had at his disposal — calculations of mortars, anti-tank guns, anti-tank guns — were sent to the Tsarsky Kurgan area to cover the tank-dangerous direction to the south of the village and create at least the appearance of a junction with 44 army units that held defense in the area of ​​the column.

For the first time, the group of Colonel Yagunov entered the battle by the end of the day on May 14, when the Germans rapidly advanced around the village. Katerlez unexpectedly approached Adzhimushkay, passing by our scattered formations, who had left their positions in the Bagerovo region and were leaving in a northeast direction. During the counterattack, which was launched by Yagunov’s detachment together with units of the 157th Infantry Division, the enemy was stopped and then thrown back. Germans lost 3 tank and a significant amount of small arms. Over the following days, Soviet units conducted active defense on this line, gaining time and reliably closing crossings from the north. By the end of May 17, German troops captured the village of Mayak and Zhukovka. On the night of May 18, the Germans broke through the Soviet defense in the area of ​​the plant named after Voikova, after which the Adzhimushkay quarries were completely surrounded. On May 18-19, at the cost of tremendous efforts, the Soviet units managed to keep only a narrow strip of coast in the Yenikale area. There, the fighting died down only on the morning of May 20, when the last formations were removed from here on ships under enemy fire, covering the withdrawal of the remaining front forces. Thanks to the staunchness, the high courage of the commanders and fighters of the rear guard units, among which the group of Colonel Yagunov played a big role, up to 140 thousand people were evacuated from the Kerch region, including tens of thousands of wounded and part of the heavy weapons and equipment of the front. But even when the evacuation of the front forces was completed, fights were fought on the last lines of the defense of the Crimean front.

Defense of Adzhimushkay stone quarry

The group of Colonel Yagunov, as well as units of the 44 Army, according to the order of the commander of the Crimean Front, had to hold positions until a "special order", which she never received. The group could not break through the ring of the environment, and before its command there was a question - what to do next? A military council was held in the quarries. The opinion was affirmed that it was necessary to continue the struggle - to descend into the quarries and create a center of resistance to the German invaders. By this time, the quarries have become a haven for disparate compounds from different parts. On the morning of May 21, in the Central quarries, an order was issued to establish an “Adzhimushkay quarry defense section” (“Stalin Admenushka quarry defense regiment”). Apparently, by this time the squad leaders already knew or guessed that the crossing of the KF troops was completed, and attempts to break through to the coast of the strait had already lost all meaning. In the first days of the defense, a medical service was organized in the garrison, there were many wounded, and the number was constantly growing. Almost immediately after the announcement of the order, the creation of other units and services of the garrison began. An account was taken of the officers and fighters who were in the quarries. Based on the lists, all were given personal signs — passes, which were used for presentation when moving inside the quarries. The entire personnel of the garrison was divided into rifle battalions (1942 battalion), a headquarters, communications service, rear services, reconnaissance unit, chemical department, special department, military prosecutor's office, military tribunal were created. In fact, was created a whole underground fortified area. Among the closest associates of the garrison commander Yagunov were garrison commissar I. P. Parakhin, deputy commander of the garrison, Colonel Fedor Alekseevich Verushkin, deputy commander for logistics, quartermaster II of the rank Sergey Terentevich Kolesnikov, head of the garrison of the garrison, senior lieutenant Pavel Sidorov, chief, chief, senior head, chief, postmaster, chief, head of the garrison, senior lieutenant Pavel Sidorov, chief, chief, chief, senior head, chief, postmaster, Sfyorov, chief, senior officer, chief, senior head, chief, post graduate, chief chief of the garrison, senior lieutenant Pavel Sidorov, chief, senior head, chief, senior head, chief, head of the garrison, senior lieutenant Pavel Sidorov, chief, senior head, Chief, Deputy Chief, head of the garrison The head of the food department, the second-rank commander Andrei Ioannikiyevich Pirogov, the battalion commanders, Lieutenant Colonel G. M. Burmin, the major (according to other information, the captain) A. P. Panov, captain an V.M. Levitsky and other commanders. The command attached great importance to combating alarmist sentiments and curbing cases of cowardice and instability. For this, not only they created a special department, but also the positions of security officers in each battalion, a special platoon headed by an unknown major, who was given the task of “clearing the garrison from traitors and traitors.”

This process was delayed for several days and was finally completed at the end of May, when the Nazis organized the first gas attacks. In addition to the main garrison, there were separate groups in the dungeon that acted independently. For example, a similar garrison, numbering about 3 thousand soldiers, divided into the 4 battalion, was created in the Small Adzhimushkay quarries. In the Small Quarries, the defense was headed by Lieutenant Colonel A. S. Yermakov, Senior Lieutenant M. G. Pazhny, Battalion Commissar M. N. Karpekhin. It should be noted that the garrisons in the Central and Small quarries were not the only ones - almost all the workings in the territory of the village Adzhimushkay (Bykovskys, Vergopolskie, Grandpa's quarries) became a place of shelter for the Red Army men and civilians. They were also hotbeds of resistance, but the defense in them was not so long and furious. Unfortunately, we do not have accurate data on their size, structure, control system and the time of their resistance.

Thus, in the Vergopol mine workings, when the Nazis approached, the civilian population was hiding. Soon, most of the civilians, fearing the German threats that had seized the village, left the quarries. But the 16 man, among whom were the Tokarev family, the communist F. Biyanko, the wife of the colonel of the Red Army and the lieutenant, remained. They connected with a military group of 27 people. At first, there was enough water in the quarries, lighting up the dungeon, first using kerosene and fuel, and then burning the telephone wire. The people in the Vergopol quarries knew that our units were fighting nearby, and therefore, when they began to run out of food, they decided to join up with a larger garrison. But the first attempts to get out of the dungeons were unsuccessful. The Germans tried to "smoke out" the group with the help of gases, but prevented drafts. Only after some time, when hunger and thirst exhausted people, they came to the surface. People were underground for almost a month and a half. The Tokarev family was lucky, the Germans detained people and held them for a few days at the commandant's office, and then released. The fate of the rest is unknown.

From May to mid-August, the Red Army defended themselves in the Bulganak quarries (approximately 3 km north-west of Adzhimushkaya). The basis of the garrison in the Bulganak quarries was made up of several dozen fighters of the 510-th separate anti-aircraft artillery battalion and the medical and sanitary battalion of the 396-th rifle division. The people were led by Lieutenant M.V. Svetlosanov and senior politruk VS Gogitidze. Until the end of October, small groups of Red Army men resisted in the underground utilities of the Yakovlev Plant. Voykova. For some time, resistance to the Nazis was provided in the Bagerovsky and Starokarantinsky quarries.

Military historian V.V. Abramov (“The Kerch catastrophe of 1942”) divides the military operations of the garrison of the Central quarries for three main periods:

- The first period: from the moment of encirclement of the Yagunov group (May 18) to the first German gas attack (May 24);

- Second period: from 25 May to early August 1942 of the year - this is the period of active defense of the garrison (although the latest information allows you to extend this time until the end of August);

- The third period: the resistance of the garrison until the last days of October - the passive defense of the detachment.

The first period of defense Adzhimushkay quarries characterized by fierce battles on the surface, the garrison sought to break through the blockade ring (moreover, several thousand fighters participated in some forays) in order to be able to supply water and food. The garrison tried to hold ground positions. In addition, in the same period, other groups who fought in the environment, tried to connect with the quarry garrison. In particular, the 19 of May 1942, a detachment of Red Army soldiers, numbering in different information from 600 to 2 thousands of fighters under the command of Lieutenant Colonel G.M. Voikova - Column. Smaller compounds from the same area made their way to Adzhimushkay before 22 in May.

Water problem The most persistent battles were originally for water, the lack of which began to be felt in the very first days of the defense. The quarries had two sources of water - “sweet” and “salty” wells, the Germans from nearby heights could shoot through all the approaches to them. The garrison suffered heavy losses. The Germans understood the importance of the sources, they had fierce fights from the very first days. For water literally paid with blood. For example, one of the participants of the defense, G.N. Akopyan, recalled the attack, when the fighters extracted 4 buckets of water and lost about a hundred people. The Germans were soon able to fill up these wells.

In the dungeon, people extracted water literally drop by drop. Several places were found where liquid dripped from the ceiling. They were guarded, all the water was taken into account and distributed a few sips to the wounded and sick in the hospital. At the same time, they organized several teams of “suckers” - people found wet places and literally sucked the water out of them. All water was strictly accounted for and distributed; this was done by a special water service. It was headed by political advisor N. P. Goroshko. In the same way, water was also mined in the Small Quarries (although there were more places where water seeped from the walls). To solve the water problem, which was becoming sharper and could lead the garrison to a quick death, the soldiers of the Central quarries in the end of May began to dig digging in the rock to the outer wells. The Germans discovered and undermined one tunnel. June 3 was ready for the second - to the "salt well". Based on the research and excavation data that the 1969-1971 expedition carried out. led by S. M. Scherbak, we managed to find out that the length of the dig was 20 m, height 0,96 - 1,2 m, and width 0,7 m. In the wellbore, the researchers found a site with a hand pump and a barrel. With her hose connected the second barrel, which stood at the beginning of the tunnel, into which water was pumped.

As a result, the problem of water for some time could be solved. But only the presence of water sources in the dungeon could finally solve the water supply problem and ensure the “water security” of the garrison. Therefore, even in the last days of May, the command of the garrison decides on the construction of underground wells. Apparently, the soldiers began to construct two wells at once - in the zone of the 1 and 2 battalions. The work was extremely hard, without special tools, it was necessary to hammer a stone by hand, using picks, shovels, crowbars. Red Army men worked day and night, replacing each other, trying to quickly get to the water. According to the recollections of V.S. Kozmin, who participated in the construction of a well in the territory of the 2 battalion, the 1 battalion managed to reach the water before them, but almost immediately the well was filled up due to a powerful explosion on the surface. Around the middle of July, they were able to reach the aquifer in the zone of the 2 battalion. Thus, the command of the garrison was able to solve the problem of water supply. From the middle of the summer there was enough water, even it was possible to create its reserves. This reduced the hopes of the Germans to nothing, that without water the Russians would capitulate.

In the garrison of the Small quarries, they also tried to dig an underground well, but they managed to break it through only a few meters, after which the work was stopped. By that time, there were not so many people in the dungeon and there was enough water from the places where it was draining.

"Kerch Brest". Heroic defense of Adzhimushkay quarry

Nikolai Booth. The soldiers of the underground garrison 1964
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    1. +3
      9 May 2012
      If anyone will be with us in Kerch, be sure to go to the quarries. Remember all your life.
      1. 0
        December 3 2021
        Quote: Wyalik
        If anyone will be with us in Kerch, be sure to go to the quarries. Remember all your life.

        Films about excursions to the Adzhimushkay quarries have appeared on YouTube, I think it is useful to watch them in order to understand what our people experienced while in them.

    2. +1
      9 May 2012
      They say different things about this topic. Especially about civilians. What were they doing there, how did they get there ?!
      1. +2
        9 May 2012
        For those who are putting me cons. Have you been there in the galleries? Civilians? 12 degrees all year round, without water! We are talking about them! Drop by for a couple of days, without military service!
        1. +1
          10 May 2012
          Uncover the first comment.
        2. 0
          11 May 2012
          For those who put me cons. Have you been there in the galleries? Civilians?

          Dear Evgen. Many civilians went to the adit because Kerch was bombed very hard, and it is best to hide from the bombing by land. Besides the Azhdimushkaysky quarries, there are also Starokarantinsky, Bulganaksky. My father said that according to various sources, about 8-10 people went to the catacombs, although up to 000 were talked. The truth is that some of them later came to the surface. And do not forget that everyone was waiting for the Red Army to return.
    3. +3
      9 May 2012
      Nowadays, there is a category of scribblers that pours mud on everything that the people accomplished during the Second World War. And what to expect from the country's leadership? GDP recognizes the feat of the people and thanks veterans, the collapse of the Union is interpreted as the greatest tragedy. For this, DAM is preoccupied with de-Stalinization and in every way encourages shitty liberal liberals, and even managed in the last days of being in power to spit the whole nation into the soul, having awarded the Order of Hunchback (probably for the collapse of the USSR).
      And we must remember the heroes of the war, because for their sake they did not spare the most important thing - their life. Everlasting memory! Eternal glory! Sincerely.
    4. Ilyukha
      9 May 2012
      Yes, Vyalik! I was in the quarries as a child, I remember it for the rest of my life. It was scary for people to die there. For almost a year the war had been going on, and they were left there “to hold on, not to retreat.” As if the fathers-commanders did not know how it would end. The worst thing is that they could not inflict damage to the enemy, but for the most part they simply died underground. they died in battle, and in these burrows they were buried there.
    5. +2
      9 May 2012
      Time was like that. People came under the saying, cut down wood, chips fly. Everything for the front, everything for victory! Otherwise, we would not have survived!
    6. +15
      November 4, 2017
      Underground war classic

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