Siege of Sevastopol (1941–42)

The harbour after the battle (July 1942)

The harbour after the battle (July 1942)

The Battle for Sevastopol was a battle of 30 October 1941 to 4th July was beaten on the Soviet-German front in World War II around the fortified seaport of Sevastopol in 1942.


Early history

The German 11 Army Infantry General Erich von Manstein reached in the autumn of 1941, the Crimean Peninsula between the 30th and tried October and early November unsuccessfully to take Sevastopol. On 4 November was the Sevastopol defense district under Oktyabrsky Filipp Sergeyevich (1899-1969), commander of the Black Sea Fleet, was founded. The Soviet Coastal Army was commanded by Major General Ivan Petrov. This district comprised some 50,000 men, 170 guns, and 90-100 aircraft. The main forces of the Black Sea fleet went in early November to ports on the Caucasian coast. Approximately 15,000 residents of the city came forward to Landwehr.

First Attacks (November 1941-May 1942)

On 11 November began four infantry divisions, one motorized division, and a Romanian motorized brigade (60,000 men) an offensive on Sevastopol. The main attack was led towards Balaklava and the auxiliary attack along the Kara-Kobja Valley. However, they found only one to four miles off, and then went from 21 Scheduled for November siege on.

On 17 December opened the second offensive. Seven German infantry divisions and two mountain infantry brigades Romanian (1275 guns, 150 tanks and 300 aircraft) attacked north bay and the auxiliary direction of attack Inkerman along the river Chernaya. The district was reinforced by two infantry divisions and a brigade that had been transported across the sea. Powered by incoming ships and aircraft led by Soviet forces a counter strike and threw back the Axis powers in the main direction.

Because of the 25 December started Kerch Feodossijaer operation, a Soviet counter-offensive in the east of the Crimea, the Wehrmacht withdrew their forces from Sevastopol. In retaliation the Red Army in Sevastopol January-March 1942, the Axis forces were thrown back on some sections. End of May 1942, Kerch Peninsula was occupied by the company Trappenjagd by the Wehrmacht, which Sevastopol situation deteriorated.

Company sturgeon (June-July 1942)

Codenamed company sturgeon

In early June 1942, the second large-scale attempt to conquer the fortress of Sevastopol has started.

To Sevastopol then almost the entire forces of the 11 were German army divisions with 7 ½ and 3 Romanian army with 1 ½ divisions focusing, together approximately 200,000 man

Artillery support was carried out by 24 mortar batteries, 81 heavy and 66 light batteries with a total of about 600 guns. It heaviest artillery caliber up to 800 mm was used, including the Railgun Dora and two mortar Series Charles. The Air Force joined with the VIII Air Corps Colonel Wolfram von Richthofen with seven-fight, three Stuka – and four hunting groups (about 600 aircraft).

In early July had Soviet troops after some reinforcements here a strength of 106,000 men and had 600 guns and mortars (including the heavily armored coastal battery Maxim Gorky I with four 30,5 cm guns), as well as 38 tanks and 53 aircraft.

From 27 May Sevastopol was constantly bombarded by artillery and air force. Of 2 to 7 June was performed strong artillery and air preparation. On 7 Morning of June began the attack on the ground in front of a width of 35 kilometers. The main attack was directed towards the eastern shore of North Bay and the auxiliary attack by the Sapun mountain toward the southeastern fringes of Sevastopol. By the defense of the German-Romanian attacks in the first five days, the ammunition of the defenders fell. On 18 June reached the Axis powers, the North Bay, Inkerman and Sapun Mountain. Ammunition and food were delivered to the defenders only to a small extent by Soviet submarines. On 29 June German troops invaded the city and 30 June also in other sections and attacked Malakhov Kurgan. On the evening of 30 June, the Soviet troops withdrew from there. On 1 July blocked the Axis powers the coast from the sea, which was also in range German artillery, and began to occupy the city. Few Red Army soldiers were evacuated. With taking the Chersonese peninsula to conquer the Crimea was on 4 Completed in July 1942.

General Erich von Manstein was the first July appointed Field Marshal. For members of the Wehrmacht, who took part in the fighting in the Crimea 1941/1942, the Krimschild was donated.


After heavy battle only nine buildings were undamaged in the city. The Berlin correspondent of the Neue Zürcher Zeitung reported a few days later:

The city of Sevastopol itself, which is beautifully situated on the roads, provides the image desolate desolation. It must be built from scratch. It is … no house, that would be habitable. The houses are either burned out or … only a pile of rubble .

Prisoners and losses of the Red Army

More than 10,000 Soviet soldiers died in combat, and in the period of 7 June to 4 July were about 97,000 soldiers of the Army Coast in German captivity.

Combat strength and losses of the German forces

The following table illustrate the combat strength and losses of the German forces during the second large-scale offensive in June 1942

Please note that the divisions mentioned five represent only a portion of troops.

Combat Strength 1 June 1942  Combat Strength 1 July 1942  Fallen  Wounded  Missing  Total losses

22, Infantry Division  13,445  9,297  670  3,251  (395)  4,316

24th Infantry Division  11,148  8,811  704  3,295  136  4,135

50th Infantry Division  unbekannt  unbekannt  488  2,784  178  3,450

132nd Infantry Division  9,842  unbekannt  471  2,404  292  3,167

170th Infantry Division  unbekannt  unbekannt  251  1,344  98  1,693

The total number of killed, wounded and missing Germans and Romanians during the eight-month battle is estimated at around 35,500.


•John Erickson: Road to Stalingrad, Cassel Military Paperbacks edition, 2003 (English)

•Robert A. Forczyk: Sevastopol 1942, von Manstein’s triumph. Osprey, Oxford, 2008, ISBN 978-1-84603-221-9. (English)

•Franz Kurowski: Sevastopol.The attack on the strongest fortress in the world in 1942. Podzun-Pallas, Woelfersheim-Berstadt 2002, ISBN 3-7909-0744-8.

Erich von Manstein: Lost victories. Athenaeum Verlag, Bonn, 1955, ISBN 3-926584-87-4. (Military Memoirs 1939-1944 of the German General von Manstein)

•Percy Schramm (ed.): war diary of the OKW, 1942, sub-band 1 and 2, ISBN 3-8289-0525-0

•CG Sweeting: Blood and Iron: The German Conquest of Sevastopol. Brassey’s, Washington, 2004, ISBN 1-57488-796-3. (English)

Battle of the Second World War

Military operation of the German-Soviet war


Romanian Military History


German occupation of Russia 1941-1944



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