Gardener stumbles upon '100-year-old' Prussian flag hidden inside rusty old bucket
A gardener in Świnoujście had the shock of her life whilst planting flowers and stumbling upon a rare pre-war Prussian flag.
The woman named Kasia was working as a volunteer at the Fort Gerhard complex in the city port in the north of Poland when she dug up a rusty old bucket caught in the roots of a tree.
Peering inside she discovered the richly embroidered 100-year-old standard, with the Prussian coat of arms showing an eagle on one side and German national colours on the other.
Embossed in to the cloth was also a gothic inscription in German, reading: “Mit Gott für König und Vaterland” (With God for King and Fatherland), the motto of the King of Prussia, Frederick William III.
The fort’s director Piotr Piwowarczyk said: “It is a miracle that it survived in the earth for so many years. The circumstances in which it was placed in the bucket remain a mystery.
“The first theory is that it was hidden there in April 1945, while the Germans evacuated from Pomerania.
“The second is that the Soviets, who took over the fort at the end of the war, threw it into a hole under the fort.”
It is thought to have been the standard of a veterans' organisation from the interwar period.
Conservation officers are now looking for a large refrigerator to protect the flag from deterioration until a decision is made on what to do with it.