The destroyed harbor of Sevastopol by Horst Grund, ca. Juli 1942 (Das Bundesarchiv)
During WWII German forces reached Crimea in the autumn of 1941 and overran most of the area. The only objective not in Axis hands was Sevastopol. They started a siege and several attempts were made to secure the city. Soviet forces launched an amphibious landing on the Crimean peninsula at Kerch in December 1941 to relieve the siege but were defeated in May 1942 (see previous post).
Present day Sevastopol, a city with 380.000 inhabitants
On 2 June 1942 the Axis launched operation Störfang (Sturgeon Catch) to attacked Sevastopol by land, sea and air. The Soviet Red Army and Black Sea Fleet held out for weeks under intense bombardment. Finally, on 4 July 1942, the remaining Soviet forces surrendered and the Axis seized the port.
During the Crimean War (1853-1856) the city of Sevastopol was also under siege. The city was the home of the Tsar's Black Sea Fleet. The allies (French, Ottoman, and British) landed at Yevpatoria (see penultimate post) in September 1854 with 50,000 men. The 56-kilometre traverse took a year of heavy fighting against the Russians, after which the city was occupied in September 1855.
Sevastopol Artillery Bay view (source: wikipedia)
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