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Photographer's Note

View of Klodzko, a town in Lower Silesia. On the hill above the town is located a fortress, from the valley you can see only a part of the fortress. The fortifications of Klodzko are one of the best kept 17th - 18th centuries defensive systems in Poland. Defensive buildings occupy the area of 32 ha. Underground is a net of corridors hollow in the rocks under the hill. The underground tunnels served to liquidate besieging enemy's artillery positions and to protect its own soldiers. The total length of the corridors is about 40 km. The average temperature is about 8 ° C and the humidity is very high.

First mentions of existence of a stronghold situated on Klodzko's hill come from the Chronicle of Bohemians, from the 10th century. This was an important point of defense of trade routes from Czech to Poland. The defense system was constantly expanded. In 1622, during the Thirty Years' War, after the long siege, the fortress was captured by the Austrian Army. In subsequent years the Austrians modernized the fortress and ancient fortifications replaced with up-to-date bastions. In 1742, the fortress was conquered by Prussia under Frederick II. The Prussians expanded the fortress but it was not fully completed 200 years after the Austrians began to modernize it. In 1807 Klodzko was captured by the French Army and the fortress became a prison. During World War II, the fortress was not only a prisoner-of-war camp, but a branch of the Gross-Rosen concentration camp.
Currently the Klodzko Fortress, looks like it did 200 years ago and it is one of the main tourist attractions of the city.

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Additional Photos by Ryszard Michalik (rychem) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 896 W: 0 N: 2192] (21593)
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