BULGARIAN Army in 1920s-1930s (organization, equipment)

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Woj
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Post by Woj » 23 Jan 2005 21:42

BIGpanzer wrote:Hi, Woj!
Just one question - according to this site PZL-43B (export variant for Bulgaria) had 4 Browning wz.36s - two fixed and two wz.36Rs in rear gunners positions. Many other sources give the information about 2 x 7.9mm wz.36 in the bow (fixed), 1 x 7.7mm Vickers F in the upper weapon emplacement; 1 x 7.7mm Vickers F in the lower weapon emplacement. So did such PZL-43s with Vickers MGs really exist?


No, P.43s with Vickers MGs never existed. See attached document.
My answer is very late - sorry!
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Post by BIGpanzer » 23 Jan 2005 23:07

Hello, Dibo!
Thanks for the message.

Dibo wrote: All others except the Russian guns were in fact modified field guns.

As for AA guns, just small note - probably, Russian 76.2mm guns, used by Bulgarian Army for AA defense during WWI, were also modified field guns (76.2 mm Russian field guns mod. 1900 and 1902 with special gun-carriage for AA purpose, as they used for AA defense by Russians), because the real Russian AA gun of that period was only 76.2mm Lender's gun mod. 1914/1915. There were quite small amount of such guns even in Russian Army (so the possibility to use them as a trophy by Bulgarians was also very low), and because such guns produced only since 1914 (during WWI), when Russia and Bulgaria became enemies, it seems strange that they could sold to Bulgaria. But this is only my supposition.

Ok, so as I understand now polk means regiment, orlyak - squadron and yato means flight.
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Post by BIGpanzer » 23 Jan 2005 23:10

Hi, Woj!
Thanks for the information!

Best regards, BIGpanzer

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History of Bulgaria (interwar period) - 1920s

Post by BIGpanzer » 28 Jan 2005 17:28

The period after WWI in the history of Bulgaria was one of uneasy political coalitions, slow economic growth, and continued appearance of the Macedonia problem.

Stamboliiski and Agrarian Reform
The 1919 election reflected massive public dissatisfaction with the war reparations, inflation, and rising taxes that prolonged the chaotic living conditions of the war. The socialist and agrarian parties tightened their organizations and increased membership. The left wing of the Bulgarian Workers' Socialist-Democratic Party (BWSDP) numbered only 25.000 in 1919, and the Bulgarian Agrarian National Union (BANU) emerged as the largest party, receiving 28% of the 1919 vote, giving it a plurality in the new subranie (assembly). Prime minister Stamboliiski sought to include the Bulgarian Communist Party (BCP), which had finished second in the election, and the BWSDP in a coalition government.
The postwar governing coalition thus included only factions to Stamboliiski's right. The first major test for the Stamboliiski government was a transport strike that lasted from XII/1919 until II/1920. Fomented by the communists and the social democrats and joined by urban workers and middle-class Bulgarians, the striker protests were quelled harshly by the army and the Orange Guard, a quasi-military force that Stamboliiski formed to counter mass demonstrations by the parties of the left.
Suppression of the strike, mobilization of the peasant vote, and intimidation at the polls gave the BANU enough support to win the parliamentary election of 1920 over the communists and form a non-coalition government. Tsar Boris III and much of the Bulgarian middle class preferred the agrarians to the communists and social democrats. Stamboliiski immediately began drastic economic reforms: abolished the merchants' trade monopoly on grain, replacing it with a government consortium; broke up large urban and rural landholdings and sold the surplus to the poor; enacted an obligatory labor law to ease the postwar labor shortage; introduced a progressive income tax; and made secondary schooling compulsory. All aspects of the radical reform policy aimed at ridding society of "harmful" classes of society such as lawyers, usurers, and merchants, distributing capital and obligations more evenly through society, and raising the living standards of the landless and poor peasants.
In foreign policy, Stamboliiski officially abandoned Bulgaria's territorial claims, which he associated with a standing army, monarchy, large government expenditures, and other prewar phenomena that the agrarians deemed anachronistic. After the war, no major power was available to protect Bulgarian interests in the Balkans. For this reason, the traditional approach to foreign policy was discarded in favor of rapprochement with all European powers and the new republican government of Turkey, membership in the League of Nations, and friendship with the new Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (later the Kingdom of Yugoslavia).
Reconciliation with Yugoslavia was a necessary step toward Stamboliiski's ultimate goal of a multiethnic Balkan peasant federation. Improved Yugoslav relations required a crackdown on the powerful Macedonian extremist movement. Accordingly, Stamboliiski began a two-year program of harsh suppression of Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO) in 1921; in 1923 Yugoslavia and Bulgaria agreed to cooperate in controlling extremists.

The Fall of Stamboliiski
Led by a large Macedonian group in Sofia, the strong nationalist elements remaining in Bulgaria found the new pacifist policy alarming. The urban working class, unaided by agrarian reforms, gravitated to the communists or the socialist workers. Inflation and industrial exploitation continued. Many of Stamboliiski's subordinates inflamed social tensions by taking very dogmatic positions in favor of peasant rights. The Bulgarian right, silent since the war, reorganized into a confederation called the National Alliance. Stamboliiski's Orange Guard jailed the leaders of that group in 1922, temporarily stopping its momentum. Meanwhile, in late 1922 and early 1923, Macedonian nationalists occupied Kiustendil along the Yugoslav border and attacked government figures to protest rapprochement with Yugoslavia and Greece. Stamboliiski responded with mass arrests, an accelerated campaign against IMRO terrorism, a purge of his own fragmented and notoriously corrupt party, and a new parliamentary election. These dictatorial measures united the agrarians' various opponents (IMRO, the National Alliance, army factions, and the social democrats) into a coalition led by Tsankov. The communists remained outside the group. Bulgaria's Western creditors would not protect a government that had rejected their reparations policy. In June 1923, Stamboliiski was brutally assassinated by IMRO agents, and the conspirators shortly took control of the entire country with only scattered and ineffectual agrarian resistance.

The Tsankov and Liapchev Governments
Tsankov formed a new government, which Boris III quickly approved. An uprising by the communists, who had hoped the two major coalition factions would destroy each other, was easily suppressed in September 1923. Nonetheless, dominated by the Macedonian freedom factions and the National Alliance, Tsankov's government failed to restore order. When Tsankov outlawed the Bulgarian Communist Party in 1924, the militant communists led by exiles Dimitrov and Kolarov became dominant in that organization. The first response to this change was the bombing of Sveta Nedelia Cathedral in Sofia while the tsar was present in 1925, killing over 100. This attack brought a new government reign of terror against the communists and the agrarians. Disunited Macedonian factions also continued terrorist attacks from their virtually separate state at Petrich, causing alarm in Western Europe. In 1926 Tsankov was replaced by Liapchev, a Macedonian who remained prime minister for five years.
Liapchev generally was more lenient toward political opposition than Tsankov; the communists resurfaced in 1927 under cover of the labor-based Bulgarian Workers' Party, and an Independent Workers' Trade Union became the center of political activity by labor. IMRO also had much more latitude under the Macedonian prime minister; this meant that political assassinations and terrorism continued unabated. IMRO raids into Yugoslavia ended Bulgarian rapprochement with that country, and the Macedonians demanded preferential economic treatment under Liapchev. But compared with the years preceding, the late 1920s brought relative political stability to Bulgaria. Liapchev led a conservative majority in the assembly and had the confidence of Boris III. The press was relatively free, and educational and judicial institutions functioned independently of the government. Industrial and agricultural output finally exceeded prewar levels, and foreign investment increased. But even after substantial reduction, Bulgaria's reparations payments were 20 percent of her budget in 1928, and the return to the gold standard that year weakened the economy one year before the onset of world depression.
In foreign policy, Liapchev tried unsuccessfully to improve British and French WWI reparation terms and bring Bulgaria out of its postwar diplomatic isolation. The country had already improved its international image by participating enthusiastically in the League of Nations, which reciprocated by forcing Greek invasion troops to leave southern Bulgaria in 1926. Boris made two European tours in the late 1920s to strengthen diplomatic ties.
In the late 1920s, the Macedonian independence movement split over the ultimate goal of its activity. The supremacist faction sought incorporation of all Macedonian territory into Bulgaria, while the federalist faction (including the IMRO terrorists) sought an autonomous Macedonia that could join Bulgaria or Yugoslavia in a protective alliance if necessary. Violence between the two groups reinforced a growing public impression that the Liapchev government was unstable.


Information is from http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/
Last edited by BIGpanzer on 31 Jan 2005 13:54, edited 1 time in total.

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History of Bulgaria (interwar period) - 1930s

Post by BIGpanzer » 31 Jan 2005 13:51

The Crises of the 1930s
Political Disorder and Diplomatic Isolation


The world economic crisis that began in 1929 devastated the Bulgarian economy: the social tensions of the 1920s were exacerbated when 200,000 workers lost their jobs, prices fell by 50 percent, dozens of companies went bankrupt, and per capita income among peasants was halved between 1929 and 1933. A wave of strikes hit Bulgaria in 1930-31, and in 1931 the Liapchev government was defeated in what would be the last open election with proportional representation of parliamentary seats.
Liapchev's coalition fell apart, his defeat hastened by the rise of a supra-party organization, Zveno - a small coalition with connections to most of the major Bulgarian parties and to fascist Italy. The main goal of Zveno was to consolidate and reform existing political institutions so that state power could be exerted directly to promote economic growth. After 1931 Zveno used the economic crisis to instill this idea in the Bulgarian political system. In 1931 the new government coalition, the People's Bloc, readmitted the BANU in an attempt to reunite Bulgarian factions. But the BANU had become factionalized and isolated; its representatives in the coalition largely pursued political spoils rather than the interests of their peasant constituency.
Meanwhile, the Macedonian situation in the early 1930s blocked further attempts to heal Balkan disputes. Four Balkan conferences were held to address the Macedonian problem; but Bulgaria, fearing IMRO reprisals, steadfastly refused to drop territorial demands in Macedonia or quell Macedonian terrorist activities in the region. Such activities had continued under all Bulgaria's postwar governments, but the People's Bloc was especially inept in controlling them. The situation eventually led to the Balkan Entente of 1934, by which Yugoslavia, Greece, Turkey, and Romania pledged to honor existing borders in the Balkans. For Bulgaria the isolation inflicted by this pact was a serious diplomatic setback in southeastern Europe.
In 1932 Tsankov founded Bulgaria's first serious fascist party, the National Socialist Movement, which imitated the methods of Hitler's Nazi party. Although Tsankov's party never attracted a large following, its activities added to the chaotic fragmentation that forced the People's Bloc from power in May 1934.
Fragmentation of the People's Bloc coalition and the threat posed by the Balkan Entente led Zveno and various military factions to stage a right-wing coup. Under the leadership of Colonel Velchev and Georgiev, the new prime minister, the new government began taking dictatorial measures. The government also took immediate steps to improve relations with Yugoslavia and made overtures to Britain and France. Diplomatic relations resumed with the Soviet Union in 1934, despite a marked increase in internal repression of communists and suspected communists. A concerted drive by the Bulgarian military against IMRO permanently reduced the power of that organization, which by 1934 had exhausted most of its support in Bulgarian society. The fact that sponsorship of Balkan terrorism finally ceased to hinder Bulgarian foreign policy was the single lasting contribution of the Velchev-Georgiev government.
The Zveno group abolished all political parties, citing the failure of such institutions to provide national leadership. The press was muzzled. Henceforeward the state would be authoritarian and centralized; the assembly would represent not political parties but the classes of society: peasants, workers, artisans, merchants, the intelligentsia, bureaucrats, and professionals. Velchev also proposed a wide-ranging program of social and technical modernization. In 1935, however, Tsar Boris III became an active political force in Bulgaria for the first time. Disillusioned by the results of the 1934 coup, Boris III took action to regain his power, which the new regime had also curtailed. Boris used military and civilian factions alarmed by the new authoritarianism to maneuver the Zveno group out of power and declare a royal dictatorship.

The Royal Dictatorship
In the years following 1935, Boris III relied on a series of uncharismatic politicians to run Bulgaria, weaken the political power of Zveno and the military, and keep other factions such as the BANU, the communists, and the national socialists from forming alliances against him. Boris III chose not to restore the traditional political supremacy of the assembly and ignored demands by many public figures to write a new Bulgarian constitution. In 1936 a broad coalition, the People's Constitutional Bloc, brought together nearly all leftist and centrist factions in a nominal opposition that had the blessing of the tsar. Boris III delayed holding a national election until 1938. At that time, only individual candidates were allowed in a carefully controlled election procedure that excluded party candidate lists. Boris III claimed that domination of the new assembly by pro-government representatives justified his nonparty system, although the People's Constitutional Bloc seated over sixty delegates. Elections in the next two years were strictly limited in order to maintain Boris's control over his parliament.

The Interwar Economy
In the years between the world wars, Bulgarian efforts to raise agricultural and industrial standards closer to those of Western Europe yielded uneven results. Until the mid-1930s, political unrest, steep reparations payments, and the world financial crisis stymied growth. Reparations payments were finally canceled in 1932, however, and the stability of the royal dictatorship brought economic improvement in the late 1930s. Half the European average in 1930, per-capita agricultural production improved markedly when government control forced diversification, new methods, and new markets into the system. In the 1930s, a 75 percent increase in membership of agricultural cooperatives bolstered the financial stability of the agricultural sector, particularly benefiting small landholders. The most notable agricultural trend between the wars was the switch to industrial crops, especially tobacco, which replaced wheat as Bulgaria's top agricultural export. The predominance of small agricultural plots increased, however; in 1944 only 1 percent of holdings were over twenty hectares, while the number of landless families had decreased.
In the 1930s, Germany bought a huge percentage of Bulgaria's agricultural exports (67.8 percent in 1939), reinforcing economic dependency by selling finished industrial products for nonconvertible currency - a distinct advantage for the Bulgarian economy and a boon to the Bulgarian standard of living. Boris III tried to balance German trade by expanding British and French markets, but he found little interest in either country. Although industry remained distinctly secondary to agriculture, contributing only 5.6 percent of the Bulgarian gross national product in 1938, between 1929 and 1939 Bulgarian industry grew at an average rate of 4.8 percent, well ahead of the European average for the period. The role of state-owned enterprises dwindled steadily in the 1930s; by 1944, only coal mines, electrical power, railroads, and banks remained predominantly in that category. While large state-sponsored enterprise diminished, small private industries flourished in the 1930s. At the same time, Bulgarian commerce became largely state-controlled and centralized in Sofia, and the social and political dichotomy between rural and urban Bulgaria was even sharper as WWII began.

Foreign Policy in the Late 1930s
By 1939 Bulgaria had moved inexorably into the fascist sphere of Germany and Italy. The country was tied to the former for economic reasons and because Germany promised territorial revision for Bulgaria, and to the latter because Boris III was married to the daughter of King Victor Emmanuel III of Italy. In the late 1930s, Bulgaria continued to seek rapprochement with Yugoslavia; a friendship treaty was signed in 1937, and a renunciation of armed intervention in 1938. When Germany took the Sudetenland from Czechoslovakia in 1938, it ended the anti-German Little Entente alliance of Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, and Romania and pushed Yugoslavia closer to Bulgaria. When WWII began in IX/1939 with the German invasion of Poland, Bulgaria declared neutrality, but this position was inevitably altered by big-power relationships.
The Nazi-Soviet alliance of 1939 improved Bulgaria's relations with the Soviet Union, which had remained cool, and yielded a Bulgarian-Soviet commercial treaty in 1940. The pro-Western Bulgarian Prime Minister Kioseivanov was deposed that year in favor of pro-German Filov, who reduced cultural ties with the West and instituted a Nazi-type youth league. Meanwhile, Boris III strove to maintain neutrality, rejecting Soviet treaty offers in 1939 and 1940. Boris III also rejected membership in the Balkan Entente and in a proposed Turkish-Yugoslav-Bulgarian defense pact, because such moves would anger Italy, Germany, the Soviet Union, or all three. Under pressure from Hitler, Romania ceded southern Dobruja to Bulgaria by the Treaty of Craiova in 1940. Needing Bulgaria to anchor its Balkan flank, Germany increased diplomatic and military pressure that year. The massing of German troops in Romania prior to invading Greece removed all remaining flexibility; aware that German troops would have to pass through Bulgaria to reach Greece, Bulgaria signed the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy in March 1941.


Information is from http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/
Last edited by BIGpanzer on 01 Feb 2005 18:08, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by BIGpanzer » 01 Feb 2005 13:25

Just several questions :) :) about Bulgarian Navy of 1930s.
1. Dibo wrote me about its organization in the beginning of 1920s (Black Sea units at Varna port and Danube river unit at Ruse port). Was such organization the same in 1930s? Where did Sea Machine School locate?
2. Were Burgas or some another ports used as navy bases at the Black Sea also? And what was the amount of men, served in Bulgarian Navy in 1920s-1930s?
3. As you could see above, I found technical data about Bulgarian torpedo and patrol boats of interwar period, but I know nothing about 6 Bulgarian rivercraft (types, specifications), operated along the Danube river. I will be very pleased if somebody could help me with this also.
I didn't know also what happened after WWI with obsolete Bulgarian torpedo boats "Vasil Levski" and "Hristo Botev" (built in Russia in 1877, 20 t), small mine-sweepers "Konduktor Dokuzanov", "Kapitan-leutenant Minkov", "Minyor", "Kalatser-ka", "Nesebr" and "Emona" (former German, 15-18 t) and 3 floating torpedo batteries (built in France, 1907, used for Varna defense) - all of them served in Bulgarian Navy during WWI, but what happened with them later, no info.....Probably, were destroyed or given to the allies........

Thanks very much for the help
Best regards, BIGpanzer

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Post by dibo » 05 Feb 2005 18:14

OK, I'm back :)

First - I found the official numbers of the armament of the Bulgarian army in 1922 - 219 guns (32 75mm field guns; 12 75mm mountain guns; 16 105mm howitzers in the arty units; the rest 149 guns: 42 below 105mm guns and 107 105mm and heavier at the Fortress points; 10 field guns given to the Navy), 355 machine-guns, 38019 rifles and carbines. There was also an undefined amount of weapons in hidden caches, up to artillery guns. The rest of the enourmous arsenal of the Bulgarian army at the end of WW1 was either given to the White Russian armies, etc. or was destroyed by the Entente Commission.

The fleet at 10.11.1925 numbered 1479 men. It was divided into Sea Police Unit (26 officers, 143 NCO's and 126 seamans); Shore Police Battalion (13 officers, 60 NCO's and 342 seamans), Danube Police Unit (12 officers, 60 NCO's ands 59 seamans) and Sea Training Unit with 638 students. Navy had 20 guns (1/2 filed guns over 100mm); 54 MG; 4418 rifles and carbines, 96 pistols, 211 sea mines. Of these - the Sea Police Unit has all the guns, 44 MG, 3461 rifles and carbines, 91 pistols and alll the mines. The 4 torpedo boatas had 2 guns and 2MG each, the 3 chasseurs had 1 gun and 2 MG each.

Sea aviation - all the available seaplanes were destroyed in 1919. The Seaplane unit is transformed into civil "Seaplane service". 2 planes available - 1 English "Avro" and 1 Italian Macci m18/V6. Several seaplanes from the war were hidden and used in Varna in the 20-s. But the Hydroplane unit was reformed only in 1941.

The "Dryzki" class torpedo-boats: 6 built in 1905-1908. "Shumni" hit a Russian mine on 11.11.1916 and sank. "Letyashti" was sank by the Entente after the WW1; "Smeli" sank in WW1, but was lifted in 1925. Initial armament - 2 47mm "Schneider" guns, 3 450mm torpedo tubes, 6 mines. In 1934 the ships were modernized and now has 2 450mm torpedo tubes and 2 37mm "Rheinmetal" guns, plus a Radio. In 1942 they were again modernized and now had 2 37mm guns and 2 MG34 MGs each.

"Dryzki" torpedoed "Hamidie" in the Balkan war, but "Hamidie" did not sank and managed to get to Istanbul.

"Vasil Levski" and "Hristo Botev" were returned to the Danube in 1913 and were used there unitl the late 30-s.

4 vedettes -"Minior", "Vzriv", "Kapitan-Leitenant Minkov" and "Konduktor Dokuzanov" - 40t., built in Canada, 17 knots, 8-16 men, 1 37mm guns, 2 MGs.

When I had some time I'll post more info.

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Post by BIGpanzer » 07 Feb 2005 18:20

Thank you very much for the letter, Dibo. Excellent info!
I just would like to clear some questions.

1. Do you know the organization and armament of Bulgarian coast artillery of interwar period (Black Sea)?
2. Did 4 vedettes from WWI period ("Minior", "Vzriv", "Kapitan-Leitenant Minkov" and "Konduktor Dokuzanov") also used during 1920s-1930s by Bulgarian navy (on the Danube river?). I found an info that they were previous German mine sweeper boats, 15 t. You wrote me about their Canadian origin and 40 t. So an unclear situation......As I understand - another vessels, used for the defence of Danube bank, were obsolete torpedo boats "Vasil Levski" and "Hristo Botev" (built in Russia, 1877, 20 t), am I right?
3. Do you know some info about 18 t boats "Nesebr" and "Emona", used by Bulgarian navy during WWI?

I found also an additional info about some torpedo boats of "Derzki" type (6 were built, 4 were used until and during WWII, see above). "Shumni" was blown up by Rissian mine near Varna 11.09.1916. "Letyashi" crashed at rocks 28.11.1918. You wrote me that it was sank by the allies. So I don't know which info is correct......."Derzki" is keepeng at Varna as navy museum until now!!!

BIGpanzer

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Post by dibo » 07 Feb 2005 19:13

BIGpanzer wrote:Thank you very much for the letter, Dibo. Excellent info!
I just would like to clear some questions.

1. Do you know the organization and armament of Bulgarian coast artillery of interwar period (Black Sea)?
2. Did 4 vedettes from WWI period ("Minior", "Vzriv", "Kapitan-Leitenant Minkov" and "Konduktor Dokuzanov") also used during 1920s-1930s by Bulgarian navy (on the Danube river?). I found an info that they were previous German mine sweeper boats, 15 t. You wrote me about their Canadian origin and 40 t. So an unclear situation......As I understand - another vessels, used for the defence of Danube bank, were obsolete torpedo boats "Vasil Levski" and "Hristo Botev" (built in Russia, 1877, 20 t), am I right?
3. Do you know some info about 18 t boats "Nesebr" and "Emona", used by Bulgarian navy during WWI?

I found also an additional info about some torpedo boats of "Derzki" type (6 were built, 4 were used until and during WWII, see above). "Shumni" was blown up by Rissian mine near Varna 11.09.1916. "Letyashi" crashed at rocks 28.11.1918. You wrote me that it was sank by the allies. So I don't know which info is correct......."Derzki" is keepeng at Varna as navy museum until now!!!

BIGpanzer


1. Coast artillery deserves more research :)
2. Danube river unit in 1921 - "Vasil Levski" and "Hristo Botev", two steam boats - "Boris" and "Stefan Karadja" (since 1933 - "Rakovski"), 2 motor boats - "Rusalka" and "Meteor". The german minesweepers you mentioned were indeed initialy named with the same names, but were later renamed.
3. Yes these were used as minesweepers until 1945.

It's not "Dryzki" at the museum, but "Strogi" with the plate "Dryzki" :)

Pictures from the Navy museum in Varna:
http://www.md.government.bg/nvim/_bg/vmm_gallery.html

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Bulgarian navy of interwar period

Post by BIGpanzer » 08 Feb 2005 12:35

Thanks for reply and for the pictures from the Varna navy museum, Dibo!

So as I understand the Bulgarian Navy (HQ at Sofia) during interwar period (1920-1939) had following ships.

Black Sea flotilia, Varna port - torpedoboat squadron (with torpedo depot, ordnance depot, 1st and 2nd torpedoboat divisions, and gunboat halfdivision) + mine squadron (with minelayer division, 1st and 2nd mine companies, 1st and 2nd minecleaning companies)
1. 4 old torpedo-boats ("Drski", "Khrabry", "Smely" and "Strogi"; built in France for Bulgaria in 1907/1908, used till the end of WWII) - 1st torpedoboat division.
2. vessel "Kaliakra" (unknown specifications and purpose, help needed)
3. 2 motor torpedo-boats of S-boat design (No. 1 (F-1), No. 2 (F-2); delivered in 1938-1939 from Germany) - 2nd torpedo boat division (in 1941 had also F-3 and F-4)
4. 6 or 7 winesweepers of mine squadron (4 were "Minior", "Vzriv", "Kapitan-Leitenant Minkov" and "Konduktor Dokuzanov" - previous German mine sweeper boats, unknown armament and later names). What were the others, their specifications?
5. 2 patrol boats of coast guard (gunboat halfdivision) ("Belomorec", "Chernomorec"; built in USA in 1917/1918 or in 1920? for France, were bought by Bulgaria in 1922), Some sources report that there was also one chasseur (I don't know the type and specifications, probably, the same?)
6. 4 vedettes "Minior", "Vzriv", "Kapitan-Leitenant Minkov" and "Konduktor Dokuzanov" - built in Canada. I don't know when and their armament?
7. 2 training sailing-ships (one of them, probably, was "Kamchiya" - former French yacht, built in England in 1882, was bought by Bulgaria in 1906, used as minelayer and hydrographic ship). The name and specifications of another I don't know.....
8. 14 different merchant ships

Danube flotilia, Ruse port - gunboat halfdivision + mine company + maintenance unit + Danube river police.
9. 6 contraband chassing rivercrafts (2 torpedo boats "Vasil Levski" and "Hristo Botev", built in Russia in 1877, used until late 1930s + 2 steam boats "Boris" and "Stefan Karadja", since 1933 - "Rakovski" - unknown specifications and year of production, armament.... + 2 motor boats "Rusalka" and "Meteor" - unknown specifications and year of prioduction, armament...

I found also, that Navy also had in 1941 (but, probably, in 1930s also) signal company, port company, salvage company, depot, Varna fortress garrison, coastal defense units.

Dibo, as you wrote me, Bulgaria had the shore gendarmerie battalion (6 companies, several MGs) in 1920s-1930s. Were there some another navy shore infantry units in Bulgaria, for example, marines?....

As for coast artillery at the Black Sea - you wrote me shortly that navy had near 10 field guns over 100 mm. Were they used at the batteries of coast artillery? Unfortunately, I couldn't find info about types of guns and organization of coast artillery of Bulgaria, only that coast artillery belonged to the army and consisted of Varna, Burgas and Ruse coast artillery regiments.

P.S. Very sorry for many questions, but this is all that I would like to know about Bulgarian navy of interwar period :) :) :)

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Post by BIGpanzer » 16 Feb 2005 09:37

Also one small question - did all motorboats on Danube river belong to the navy, or some of them also to the frontier troops?

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Bulgaria - reserves and mobilization

Post by BIGpanzer » 22 Feb 2005 19:18

Does somebody know the total amount (seems to be near 500.000) and the upper age of reservists in Bulgarian Army before WWII (in 1939)? As far as I know Bulgaria had small professional army after WWI, according to the Neuilly Treaty (1919). When did the conscripts appear again in Bulgarian army? Did some reservist's training schools or training centers exist in preWWII Bulgaria?
Thanks in advance, BIGpanzer

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Bulgarian artillery of interwar period

Post by BIGpanzer » 24 Feb 2005 22:52

Please, help me with the info about types of artillery guns (mortars, cannons, howitzers), used by Bulgarian Army in 1920s-1930s. Also with the description of organization of artillery units in Bulgarian Army during the same period. I couldn't find materials about that.
Please, help to build the whole picture of preWWII Bulgarian Army organization.

BIGpanzer

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Inter-war officer appointments

Post by AJK » 11 Mar 2005 01:41

A question for the Bulgarian experts: I have noted that during the inter-war years. a large number of officers with the rank of full Colonel (Polkovnik) held positions of Intendant of an Infantry Division. Since it was not unusual for a Colonel to actually command a Division, it seems that the position of Intendant was very important in the Bulgarian Army.

Can someone explain the duties of a Division Intendant? Could it be that the name "Intendant" was a cover for a more important appointment (Deputy Division Commander?) designed to circumvent the provisions of the Treaty of Neuilly in the same way as the Germans and Hungarians used cover names to get around the provisions of the Treaties of Versailles and Trianon?

Thanks in advance.

AJK

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Post by jpmuikku » 15 Mar 2005 20:20

It's exactly this kind of topics that keep this forum so interesting and fascinating. Thanks a lot for all this nice info. :)

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