Columns of the Vyborg Bay, part 3
Columns of the Vyborg Bay, part 3

After writing two articles about the columns in the Vyborg Bay, in which all geometric and other characteristics were revealed, a number of unsolved questions remained. In recent days, I have read many versions on thematic resources about how the columns could end up there, how they were transported, where they were intended. In this article I will try to voice my thoughts on this matter. Now let's talk about everything in order.

To begin with, what is an unshakable truth and is not subject to discussion. The points.

1. These columns are primary semi-finished products. Only from the machine. From a lathe or equivalent. In the sense that it doesn't matter to us whether the stone workpiece rotated with a stationary cutter, or the cutter rotated around a stationary workpiece. This is an exclusively technogenic product. Any references to the technologies of the first half of the 19th century, such as a chisel, a sledgehammer and a good eye, can not be seriously considered - stupidity. The columns have no traces of grinding, let alone polishing.

2. The geometric dimensions of the columns, as well as the passport of the granite from which they are made, completely reject the possibility of identifying these columns with any famous monument, building or structure in St. Petersburg or its environs. These columns are unique.

Based on these two points, a logical and only assumption can be made. The columns in this place were in the process of transportation. At the same time, we do not know either point A, that is, from where the columns were taken out, nor point B, to which they were supposed to be delivered. At the same time, point A is most likely a local location, because the local district is replete with granite outlets of just the same passport as well as the columns. Another thing is that this location is quite extensive, it is tens of square kilometers at least. I would very much like our valiant geologists, and above all the St. Petersburg Mining University, to make a detailed analysis of the granite passport in the North-West region. As it turned out, granite has a very strong variety, one can even say that each quarry is unique in its own way and has its own passport of the available outcrops of granite masses. Those expert opinions that I happened to see, unfortunately, this issue is considered extremely superficially. For understanding, I will give an example. Let's take people. People are of different races. These are types of granite. Red, black, gray and so on. Each race of people has a division into peoples. In particular, we can easily distinguish blond Scandinavians from dark-haired Arabs. There are a lot of peoples with various characteristics. So it is with granites, which are divided into a bunch of rocks and sub-rocks. Fine-grained, coarse-grained, transitional forms to diabases and basalts, chemical composition, and so on. So, our geologists, unfortunately, do not go beyond the characteristics of rocks. In the case of St. Petersburg, everything is limited to the statement that the columns of St. Isaac's Cathedral, the Kazan Cathedral, the Alexander Column, as well as the granite of the embankments of rivers and canals, fortresses, forts, most of the foundations and walls of buildings, are made of pink rapakivi granite, the so-called vyborgite … And the fact that this very pink rapakivi can be very different outwardly, they do not specify. All of us, people of the same race and even of the same nationality, have different eyes, different nose, lips, ears, face contours and so on. All this makes you and me unique, recognizable. That is why we are taking photographs with a passport, because clearly these differences are clearly visible. So it is with granite. Each quarry, or rather, each granite location has its own passport. These are shades of color, quantitative and qualitative characteristics of the ovoid structure, the so-called brine (grains), texture, and so on. It's much more complicated. Knowing the granite passport of a particular monument, structure or building, you can accurately determine the location of the place from which the stone was produced for its production.And then superimpose all this data on historical documentary and fiction. I'm sure there will be many inconsistencies. For example, there is a written source from the 19th century that claims that different quarries were used for the production of the columns of St. Isaac's Cathedral. I am convinced that this could not be because of the granites' passport. In appearance, all Isaac's columns are of the same passport, which makes the probability of its production from different quarries negligible, one might say equal to zero.

Let's get back to our topic. On point A, I spoke. She is somewhere in the location of those places where the columns are now. As for point B, everything is much more complicated here. It can be anywhere. And it is not at all necessary that this is St. Petersburg. The ball is large.

In the first article, I reasonably showed that the likelihood that the columns were produced in a nearby quarry (500 meters south, yellow square) is extremely small, not logical. Most likely, they came to this point from the area marked with an orange oval.


And the columns were transported on the ship. Or rather, not so. It did not necessarily have to be a ship in our usual sense. That is, a kind of barge. They could also be towed. The towing of cargo by water is still widely practiced. Towing methods are different. Floating objects can pull on a rope (rope), they can push. In the case of towing, it is advisable to make the transported object close to zero buoyancy in order to minimize the negative factors of wind drift. Simply put, the trough on which the columns were submerged should be as small as possible so that it does not sink. And it is not at all necessary that this trough should be wooden. It is important here that the option with overland delivery of columns is, from my point of view, excluded. It is difficult, extremely expensive and, most importantly, nothing indicates the land version. There are no signs of strengthening the soil (paving), leveling the site, arranging the pier, and so on. And the terrain in the area where the columns are located is extremely difficult for logistics. The coast is a series of ledges; in total, the slide turns out to be not only multi-stage, but also long. The truth is now. Nobody knows what the local landscape was like in antiquity. According to my version, the strongest tectonic changes took place here. I showed the traces of these catastrophic changes in the first article. The option with the layout that the columns here are from the antiquity is also excluded. With the traces of catastrophic events that we are recording, these columns would hardly now lie in the form we see. They would have been broken and scattered. In the first two articles, I showed in this place a fault in a granite massif one and a half hundred meters wide and, as a result of this fault, stones scattered around the area. Despite the fact that there were many such faults, some stones of this location have a different passport, which implies their different deposit and, accordingly, delivery to this location by air by the force of an explosion (ejection) and in some cases by powerful water flows.

In general, these columns came here in our historical time (not earlier than the 18th century) and from another place. But this place is somewhere in a relatively close location. Most likely, the conditional point A needs to be looked for somewhere in the area of ​​the modern village of Baltiets, this is on the shore of the same bay, there is a convenient river, now a system of lakes, on which there could easily be a system of locks with all the ensuing consequences in the form of a generating force for machine tools and machines, convenient logistics (loading and unloading), water supply systems, ship docks and so on. The settlement has a long history, officially from the middle of the 16th century. There, apparently, in antiquity, there was the production of columns and other stones of various formats. And in the 18-19 centuries, everything that was well preserved was taken out from there.

Here is a diagram with captions for clarity. With a gray dotted line, I marked the proposed place where the granite of this passport was mined and, accordingly, its processing into forms.The vessel with columns managed to pass about 3 km along the bay before for some reason lost control and was blown away by the wind into the bay in which these columns still rest.


Many assumptions can be made here. There could be a self-propelled barge that lost control. There could be a towed "trailer" that fell off the cable and was blown away by the wind. We will never know this. The only thing that can be assumed as a clarification is that the columns were carefully unloaded. Side by side, exactly. That is, they were taken care of and planned to be taken away. The vessel, apparently, was later evacuated.

Now comes the fun part. How they planned to pick it up and what they did for this. For clarity and understanding, I will immediately show the pictures that I posted in the second article. Very good pictures from a quadrocopter made by Nikolai Subbotin during the expedition two weeks ago.

Image Image

You can see that next to the columns there are stone blocks, under which, in turn, you can see wooden elements. Now I will try to explain what and how appeared there. Of course, I did not stand with a candle, I build only a logical chain of inferences based on my own knowledge and experience. In the second article I pointed out that the wooden elements are a pallet made for the purpose of removing the columns. Now in detail.

The first thing to understand is that blocks and columns are not related events in any way. Everyone thinks that the columns and blocks were transported on the same barge, or they were put together there, or these are the ruins of some ancient structure, and so on and so forth. I have heard many versions already. To the extent that there were huge sledges on which all this stuff was transported on the ice to St. Petersburg. At the end of the article I will write why the version with ice is wrong. In the meantime, let's return to the columns and pebbles.

To visualize and better understand my thoughts in the process of storytelling, I will draw schematic diagrams. I would like to point out right away that the version involves loading the columns back onto the ship. If the columns were removed to land, everything would be much easier. Winch system from the nearest trees and trick. True, then their further transportation is absolutely impossible without an appropriate landscape study, the traces of which are completely absent from the word.

Imagine yourself in the place of a foreman or an engineer, who was instructed to get the columns and load them onto the ship. What are you going to do? It is logical to assume that the first thing you do at the bottom next to the columns will have to build some kind of flooring on which you can put a crane (mechanism). And such a flooring at the bottom was discovered during the expedition. Here's a diagram. I marked the columns in orange at that time. They are still close by.


Apparently the plan was as follows.


I drew a pallet at the bottom. It was apparently supposed to accommodate lifting mechanisms. Most likely two mechanisms, along the ends of the columns. For a loop of a cable (rope) can only be made from the ends. The principle is simple. Like Archimedes. Give me a foothold and I will turn the Earth. It was supposed to lift the column, then the loading ship was displaced to the vacant place, the column was lowered. However, it did not grow together. Most likely one of the reasons was a sag or a break in the pallet. The question arose of strengthening the flooring and it was decided to lay a second layer of logs under the lifting mechanisms.


However, it did not work out again. This time, most likely, problems arose with the lifting mechanism. Maybe the beam could not stand it, maybe something else. But, most likely, a beam. If we proceed from the fact that there were two lifting mechanisms, then we can estimate the force for a break. Columns are of the order of 34-36 tons, that is, for each lever, 18 tons conditionally. The outreach of the arrow relative to the fulcrum is in no way less than 3 meters, probably even 3, 5-4 meters in reality was. Assuming the length of the boom, which is possibly visible in the photo as a long log and is 16 meters, it is possible to calculate both the force at the opposite end of the boom and the bending force at the fulcrum.If we conditionally take the ratio of the length of the lever arm as 1: 3 (4 and 12 meters), then on the opposite arm of the lever the weight should be 6+ tons. These same 6 tons with hooks at the ends of the lever, we see in the form of different stone blocks. At the same time, when the boom of the lifting mechanism began to bend and break, at some stage there was a futile attempt to shorten the arms of the levers, which implied an increase in mass at the end of the arm. These are additional stone blocks of a different size.

In the end, it became clear that in this way it would not be possible to lift the columns and load them onto the ship. They began to puzzle over what to do next and came up with another option. Cardinally different. Here is its schematic diagram.


But here, too, nothing worked. Perhaps the flooring could not stand, perhaps the lever broke again, perhaps the vessel could not be rigidly fixed and the slightest movement (draft) of the vessel brought all attempts to zero. There can be many reasons, but most likely all reasons taken together. One slightest distortion dragged a whole string of problems along with it.

It is worth noting here that there is hasty work, without thorough preparation. They were in a hurry, perhaps they wanted on the sly, by concealment, with small forces. As I wrote in the second article, this action took place in the 20th century, most likely in the 20-30s by the Finns or during the Great Patriotic War by the Germans.

In fact, if we take the issue of withdrawing the columns seriously, then personally I do not see any particular problems. True, you will need thorough preparation and metal mechanisms. If now suddenly someone wants to get the columns, he will do it. Even ashore to pull out and load on a scow, even on a ship. Yes, it will not be cheap, but certain work will have to be done both at the bottom and on the shore, but everything is technically feasible.

Yes, before I forget. When those who realized that not a damn thing was working, they were smart enough to put the blocks in a heap near the columns, although one block still remained lying about a dozen meters from the heap. In the first photo from the quadcopter, you can see it at the bottom of the cropped image. And now, when I have painted and painted everything in detail, put my story on the existing photos and you will understand that I am right. At least my version is fully consistent with what is in fact. One of the levers in the last version broke off and still its fragment sticks out between the columns. Let me remind those who have not read the second article, the pallet wood is fresh enough, well preserved. It cannot be dated to the period of the Russian Empire.

Are there other suggested options? Of course they are. And my version can also be adjusted. For example, I described an option with two lifting mechanisms, but there could be more of them. It could easily have been three or even four. Given that the two types of blocks visible in the photo just have three units of approximately the same size. True, we see only two of the second level of the pallet. But the middle part of the second level at some stage could well be disassembled and put into operation on the flooring of the last option when rolling directly onto the ship. Unfortunately, we will never know, and we will only make assumptions.

By the way, about the assumptions. I promised to tell you why the ice version is wrong. Let me remind you that I read the version that the columns and stone blocks could be rolled on a sleigh or some structures like a sleigh on ice in winter. I will answer as a local fisherman.

1. Ice is not even or uniform. He and bumps, and with protruding stones, and different thicknesses. In a thaw with gullies. The wind and currents break it, cracks are everywhere. Often carried away. Remember the annual epics with St. Petersburg fishermen.

2. Hummocks. The coastal part up to 3 km from the coast is usually extremely hummocky. Locally and in some years, it is completely not passable by anything. Neither people nor technology. Even now.

3. If it snows, even a fishing box on skis is extremely difficult to drag. Especially when the snow melts and there is water under it. Or, on the contrary, the snow that has fallen by its mass will squeeze out the water through the cracks, which accumulates under the snow.In this case, movement by equipment (snowmobile, motorized dog, sleigh) is practically impossible, on foot it is extremely difficult.

4. In the drifting snow, snow puffs up with dunes like sand in the desert. Locally, it can easily be more than half a meter thick. It is also impassable.

5. Even if the snow fell in a thin layer, fresh, until it is compressed and adheres to the surface of the ice, then there is no fulcrum from the word at all. Very slippery. You can't even drag a child on a sled. All St. Petersburg fishermen, those who walk far along the Gulf of Finland (smelt), have special shoes. Previously, these were special-shaped galoshes for felt boots. Now boots with soles made of a special composition and a certain tread. As well as special pads with spikes, the so-called ice shoes.

Following. There is also a lot of talk now that the wood may be older. Bog oak, Venice (Siberian larch) and other examples of archaeological finds are cited as examples. Here you also need to understand what is what and to separate flies from cutlets. Wood can be stored for a long time in an environment with a low amount of oxygen. That is, there must be some kind of preservative. A preservative can only be that which excludes or reduces the amount of oxygen dissolved in water. For example, clay, which acts as a waterproofing agent, or silt and peat, which actively consume free oxygen. Where the columns lie, there is no clay, no silt, no peat. Only sand. Sand passes water well, and with it oxygen. In this location, there are no conditions for long-term preservation of wood. Despite the fact that wood in this case is ordinary needles, as you know, it is not particularly resistant to decay. Since I'm distracted by the wood, I will say something else. Wood is different. Both in density and hardness, and in chemical composition. In addition, different types of wood have different electrical charges. Any wood rots in water, but various features can reduce or increase the period. Some types of wood under certain conditions are tanned, calcified. The well-known example of bog oak. If you put an oak in water and cover it with sand, but thicker, or better with clay or silt, then it turns to stone. But it takes many years. Now in an industrial setting, this process has been reduced to days by heating, drying, steam and chemicals. At the same time, few people know that a number of wood species in some conditions are superior in characteristics to bog oak. For example, the well-known aspen to all of us. It is very soft, especially the top of the tree, while in natural conditions it rots very quickly, so you will not find old and thick trees in the forest. But, if the tree is wetted, it swells greatly, and when dried it shrinks a lot. Moreover, there is the fact of accumulation. That is, each cycle of swelling and subsequent drying will dance from the last cycle with a progression to compaction. So, after three such cycles, aspen is already harder than oak. And after 10 cycles you won't even hammer a nail into it. The most interesting thing is that aspen has no compression limit. Even after many drying cycles, it retains the ability to dry out. True, this process is extremely slowed down. Moreover, if there is a humid environment, it will also absorb moisture and swell. Even varnished or waxed. For over the years, varnish, wax and other coatings lose their properties and increase hygroscopicity. In general, over time, an aspen product will necessarily crack. By the way, aspen has a negative charge and therefore is not friendly with needles. Together they do not grow, aspen oppresses the needles. And those trees that manage to grow have branches away from the aspen. Chet Ostap suffered … Enough. Yes, other types of wood have their own "cockroaches".

And the last thing. There is a sandbank to the right and left of the columns. Some are trying to connect this in some way with the ruins of the past. Like something buried under the sand. And the columns with blocks are just the tip of the iceberg.


No. This is not the tip of the iceberg. There is nothing unusual here.Any coast at some distance from the water's edge has such an alluvial sand and pebble. It is formed by the bottom reverse current with a large wave to the shore. The fact that the columns do not have such an alluvium is due only to the fact that the columns themselves were like a dam and held back both the surge surface current and the reverse bottom current. And on the right and on the left, this alluvium ends with reasons of a different nature. This is the bottom topography (depth), the geometry of the coastline, stone ridges, the inlet of a flowing stream, etc.

Now that's it. I presented my thoughts on the topic of possible ownership and transportation of the columns. As well as the most probable cause-and-effect chain of eventual nature. Thank you all for reading.

Added on 20.09. At the moment, the process of removing the columns is in progress. The blocks have already been pulled ashore, and the columns will soon be pulled out. It is planned to create a museum in Vyborg, where the columns will become one of the exhibits. Good or bad, I can’t judge. I can only assume that the small sandy beach, which was the pearl of the bay, will cease to be this very pearl, if it remains at all.

Popular by topic