Defensive zone of Krivošije

Defensive line:
Dvrsnik – Janko’s peak - Dragalj

Tactical mission task
Securing Dragalj from Grahovo side, towards Herzegovina and from the direction of Lovćen massif
Control of communication towards Boka

Construction period
1910 - unfinished

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Armored howitzer 100mm, 4 pieces
Armored observatory dome 
Machine gun with a stand, 1 pieces
Machine gun without a stand, 6 pieces
Infantry weapons

  • Armored howitzer²
  • Sketch of an armored howitzer nest² 
  • View towards the fortress during³ construction³
  • One of the cisterns on Dvrsnik³
Dvrsnik belongs to the last generation of expensive and huge fortresses designed before the First World War. Built as armored concrete, multi-storey structures, they were hidden in the natural environment.They could receive a large army and serve as a strategic support. At the end of XIX century, this type of fortification replaced stone fortresses, which were no longer adequate protection from the newer generation of artillery of greater destructive power and range up to 8 km. For this reason, some parts of fortress Dvrsnik have several meters thick concrete walls. For the sake of protection,the fortress heavy artillery was placed in steel structures weighing up to 10 tones, with indestructible turrets.  
Plan of the fortress Dvrsnik¹
This is the story of burly Pero from Dragalj, who worked on the construction of Dvrsnik in 1914:
Construction site in Krivošije³
Stone crusher machine³  
“It took four years to build a powerful fortress, as big as the biggest dragon from the stories around the hearth. I was working on stone crusher machine, making stone for glacis¹ and watched smart engineers all the time as they talked and looked at the papers in which was written what and how everything should be done. Along the path that led to the dragon at the top of the hill, various buildings sprang up, huge barrack and cisterns, so as not to lack water. Just before the end of the path, rails were set up, in order to bring heavy loads that we thought would never be able to climb up.
One day, huge steel cages were carried on the rails to the top. When we went to the top, we saw only covers on the roof. The cannon barrels were protruding from the covers and soldiers could turn them in all directions. From that height, they could not miss even a bird. I was wondering, who the empire is preparing for, equal by force of arms, to come from the Montenegrin side?  
  • Dvrsnik guard³
  • Concrete roof of Dvrsnik³
  • Cable car³
I was paid regularly and decently, so I could feed my family. The children were already going to school in Grkavac. If they study school, they won’t have to callus their hands with hard work. But after St. Vitus Day that year, everything changed. 
The war began. I was dresses in the uniform of the imperial army and sent to Tyrol. I said goodbye to my family, kissed the children and went on a long journey with the army.” Burly Pero never returned from the Italian front. He died in one of numerous offensives of the Austro-Hungarian army. His sons did not attend school because they had to take care of the family.  

¹ Glacis is an artificial slope around the fortress covered with gravel on which the enemy army has difficulty to move.  

The story is a reconstruction of time with imaginary characters, based on old photographs and conversations with the local population about the lives of their ancestors in the described period.
¹ Source: Radojica Pavićević
² Source: Volker Pachauer
³ Source: Österreichisches Staatsarchiv
4 Source: Österreichische Gesellschaft für Festungsforschung

Important Note: Explore the fortresses and use the trails at your own risk.
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Improving the quality and diversity of the tourist offer based on natural and cultural heritage in the border rural areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro.
This website is part of the FORT-NET project "From the Medieval Fortresses in Herzegovina to the Austro-Hungarian Fortresses in Montenegro" funded with the help of the European Union. The content of this website is the sole responsibility of the project partners and does not necessarily represent the views of the European Union.
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