Yahya Cavus Village and Ancient Columns

Ezineli Yahya Cavus Village and Ancient Columns

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He was born in 1887, as the son of Mustafa and Dudu, and was registered to the population of Koçali village (the former name of Yahya Çavuş Village) in Ezine district of Çanakkale province. It is written in the registers ofpeople that he had a son named Muharrem (Canbaz), born in 1914. On May 23, 1331 (June 5, 1915), he was martyred in Maydos (Eceabat).

Yahya Çavuş (pron. Chavush), who also participated in the Balkan Wars, was 28 years old during the Battles of Gallipoli. The story of Yahya Çavuş from Ezine, the Commander of 9th Division 26th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Battalion, 10th Troop, 1st Team, which proteted Seddülbahir – Alçıtepe region, can be summarized as follows from the report of Battalion Commander Major Mahmut Sabri: The “V” beach was across the Ertuğrul Bastion. The enemy had deployed a large number of troops under the auspices of the Albion Battleship. The selected landing area was surrounded by cliffs on all sides. Our machine guns were nested there. To prevent the enemy from going ashore, barbed wires were placed along the shore. Ertuğrul Bay was defended by the 10th Troop the 3rd Battalion. The British began bombing intensely around 4.30 in the morning. In this half-hour period, thousands of artillery shells hit Ertuğrul Bay. Nevertheless, our troops did not respond to any of them by keeping their serenity. As the next plan, the British were planning to land some of their troops in six groups of four boats, while they loaded other part on the coal ship called River Clyde. For landing, they made folding piers to both side of the ship. River Clyde, a modern Trojan horse, was a 10-year-old coal ship, and it was carrying 2,000 soldiers.

Yahya Çavuş was commanding five squad soldiers, who settled on the west side of the bay and saw the bay from the side, attached a team of the 10th Troop of the 26th Regiment on the ridges of Ertuğrul Bay. Yahya Çavuş from Ezine participated in the Balkan War, and like every Turkish soldier, he could not also overcome the agony and embarrassment of defeat from his heart. When the mobilization was declared for the First World War, he volunteered. He took charge in the defense of Seddülbahir Ertuğrul Bay on the Dardanelles Front on April 25, 1915 as the Commander of 5 squad (45) soldiers attached to 9th Division, 26th Regiment, 3rd Battalion, 10th Troop.

Under the fire of the Albion battles at Ertuğrul Bay, the landing continued with the Dublin Battalion first and then the River Clyde coal ship. According to the plan, the operation was going to start at 6.00, but the boats, which were drifted with the current, were able to come to the shore with a delay of forty-five minutes. 200 meters to the shore 10th Troop’s sudden fire began. Yahya sergeant and his friends had patiently waited for the landing troops to approach, and started an intense fire just as they were going ashore. Landing forces suffered great defeat and lost much. Some of the boats fled, some of them toppled or sank.

Only a few soldier could land. There was no force to save the situation except the two battalions on the River Clyde.

As the ship approached the shore, it ran aground quite offshore. Therefore, a bridge was needed to be built with barges to reach the shore. Efforts to ensure this did not yield any results, though. Because of the intense fire of the 10th Troop and especially the side fire of the team headed by Yahya Çavuş, soldiers coming out of the ship were being shot one by one. He was leading his unit at the command of five squad like an officer. The enemy force of 3,000 was stopped.

Under the protection of the machine guns placed in front of the River Clyde, the passage between the shore and the ship was placed under the crossfire of our troops on both sides. Toward noon, Pilot Sampson, who was flying over Seddülbahir reported that the coastal section of the sea water was cut red. The surviving 200 soldiers of the Irish Battalion, which was able to reach the beach by their landing vessels after three hours of battle, tried to hold onto a piece of land on the shore.

At mid-afternoon, it must have been decided by the enemy that the five-squad battlement headed by Yahya Çavuş, from Ezine had to be destroyed, some of the ships in the British navy opened fire on this area and leveled the battlements. Therefore, Yahya Çavuş and his fellow gunmen left the trenches and continued their struggle on different sides.

Enemy forces coming from Tekke Bay further west managed to take Aytepe behind Yahya Sergeant at 15.00. In this case the Ertuğrul bastion was wrapped around the back. When this news reached Yahya Çavuş, he fixed a bayonet with the rest of the team under his command and moved towards the enemy.

Due to Aytepe being taken by the enemy and darkening, he had to return to his troop in Harapkale with his two friends. After defending Ertuğrul Bay against all kinds of enemy fire for 12 hours Yahya Çavuş from Ezine had left the place. Yahya Çavuş had to be rewarded to a superior degree than his counterparts. Unfortunately, the heroism of Yahya Çavuş was not included in the records due to the martyr of the troop officer and the battalion commander’s being injured and brought to hospital. The 9th Division commander Halil Sami Bey sent the 25th Regiment, the reserve force, to Seddülbahir Front at 15.30, and reached to help Mehmetçik (Turkish soldiers) fighting heroically. This prevented the advance of the enemy forces that had landed.

Ancient Columns

They are about 700 meters away from the village of Yahya Çavuş, in west-soutwest direction. This is a quarry that was in operation for thousands of years. Here we witness thousands of years of history and a unique view of natural wonder. We are surrounded by pink and gray granites.

In many parts of the world, people drilled mountains for granite or excavated the ground, Allah (CC) has sent down a blessing here from heaven. Each of the ancient columns consists of single-piece granites and is apoximately 13 meters long and 1.70-75 meters wide. Their average weight is estimated to be around 70 – 80 tons.

The appearance of the quarry is as if the workers went to leave for the weekend and would return. In front of a large rock at the entrance of the quarry we see an incomplete column. Also on the top of the quarry there is a control terrace where the quarry is managed.

The colossal columns that were extracted were transported to the port of Alexandria-Troas, about 5 kilometers away, and then exported to today’s Europe by ship.

Many columns, broken during transportation or remaining, were encountered. In fact, one of these columns is still waiting to be loaded in the port of Alexandria-Troas, which we will explain later.

Many columns that have been removed from these mines and used in the construction of major churches in Europe have been identified. It has been found that they have been used in monumental and historical buildings in many countries from today’s Italy to France and Germany. However, how these colossal columns were carried in ancient conditions is still a mystery. Many views have been put forward, but so far no satisfactory answer has been found. Although some traces of tools can be seen in the mine, it still raises many questions: which tools were used, how these stones were carved without breaking or cracking them, and then how they were transported. Like the Pyramids of Egypt, they still remain the mystery: how they were made and transported.

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