The remains of the defensive fortifications of Kaunas City

6°C
Kęstučio str. 82, Kaunas
Listen
Routes

In the very centre of Kaunas, a small but very important piece of the history hides near the Kaunas State Musical Theatre. What’s left of the city’s defensive fortifications are the remains of the Malūnininko (Miller) Tower and Kaunas city wall.

These objects probably date back to the period between 1660 and 1688, although there are other theories. It’s also known that this was already the third defensive wall. The first one likely followed the current streets of M. Valančiaus and Aleksoto, and the second one surrounded the city that was already slightly bigger at the time. Historians claim to have found traces of the defensive wall at the corner of A. Mapu and Vilniaus streets. They mention it going near Saint Nicholas’ Church. But let’s return to the third one that can still be seen today.

A round two-story tower, made of red bricks, is probably one of two objects of its type in the perimeter of the wall. The second one, which was closer to today’s Laisvės Alėja (Liberty Avenue), was demolished in 1894.

Firearms were stored on the first floor of the Malūnininko Tower and 17 holes for shooting were built into the second floor. In the tower, that stood at nine metres high, there also was a third storage room between the floors.

In 2014 the historian Rytis Mekiša wrote that at the end of the 19th century, when Kaunas was the centre of the Tsarist governorate, the Malūnininko Tower, that was at the time in the process of slowly falling apart, was entrusted to Tomaševskis (Tomaszewski), the owner of a site nearby, who established workshops inside the structure. Subsequently, the purpose of the premises changed several times, and a restaurant is currently located there today.

The sections of the city wall located to the north and south of the Malūnininko Tower were restored and preserved in the 1960s. The highest part of the remaining wall is 5.3 metres. Its original height remains unknown. Some sources claim that it was six metres high, whilst others mention it as being nine metres in height.

In 2008, next to the remains of the wall, the multi-purpose building Bokštas (Tower), designed by the architect Gintautas Natkevičius, was built, clearly separating the New Town and the Old Towns. Constructed with consideration to the important object of the heritage nearby, the mirrored facade of Bokštas makes it easier to see the Malūnininko Tower reflected in it.

In the summer of 2018 during the reconstruction of Laisvės Alėja, two treasures were found one after another near the former city wall. Several hundred brass coins excavated by workers date back to the second half of the 16th century. It’s believed that they were buried outside the town and were to be used on a very bad day, when people really need the money.

The remains of the defensive fortifications of Kaunas City

Kęstučio str. 82, Kaunas

In the very centre of Kaunas, a small but very important piece of the history hides near the Kaunas State Musical Theatre. What’s left of the city’s defensive fortifications are the remains of the Malūnininko (Miller) Tower and Kaunas city wall.

These objects probably date back to the period between 1660 and 1688, although there are other theories. It’s also known that this was already the third defensive wall. The first one likely followed the current streets of M. Valančiaus and Aleksoto, and the second one surrounded the city that was already slightly bigger at the time. Historians claim to have found traces of the defensive wall at the corner of A. Mapu and Vilniaus streets. They mention it going near Saint Nicholas’ Church. But let’s return to the third one that can still be seen today.

A round two-story tower, made of red bricks, is probably one of two objects of its type in the perimeter of the wall. The second one, which was closer to today’s Laisvės Alėja (Liberty Avenue), was demolished in 1894.

Firearms were stored on the first floor of the Malūnininko Tower and 17 holes for shooting were built into the second floor. In the tower, that stood at nine metres high, there also was a third storage room between the floors.

In 2014 the historian Rytis Mekiša wrote that at the end of the 19th century, when Kaunas was the centre of the Tsarist governorate, the Malūnininko Tower, that was at the time in the process of slowly falling apart, was entrusted to Tomaševskis (Tomaszewski), the owner of a site nearby, who established workshops inside the structure. Subsequently, the purpose of the premises changed several times, and a restaurant is currently located there today.

The sections of the city wall located to the north and south of the Malūnininko Tower were restored and preserved in the 1960s. The highest part of the remaining wall is 5.3 metres. Its original height remains unknown. Some sources claim that it was six metres high, whilst others mention it as being nine metres in height.

In 2008, next to the remains of the wall, the multi-purpose building Bokštas (Tower), designed by the architect Gintautas Natkevičius, was built, clearly separating the New Town and the Old Towns. Constructed with consideration to the important object of the heritage nearby, the mirrored facade of Bokštas makes it easier to see the Malūnininko Tower reflected in it.

In the summer of 2018 during the reconstruction of Laisvės Alėja, two treasures were found one after another near the former city wall. Several hundred brass coins excavated by workers date back to the second half of the 16th century. It’s believed that they were buried outside the town and were to be used on a very bad day, when people really need the money.

Leave a comment
E-mail address

Comment*

Send
Comment sent successfully!