Battery Farnsworth

From FortWiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Battery Farnsworth (1898-1917) - Battery Elon Farnsworth was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 8 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Constitution (2), New Castle Island, Rockingham County, New Hampshire. The battery was named in G.O. 194, 27 Dec 1904, after Brigadier General Elon J. Farnsworth, U.S. Volunteers, who was killed in action at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, 3 Jul 1863, during the U.S. Civil War. Battery construction started in 1897, was completed in 1899 and transferred to the Coast Artillery for use 23 Jul 1898 at a cost of $ 65,000.00. Deactivated in 1917.

Battery Farnsworth

Endicott Period (1890-1910)

Part of the Harbor Defense of Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 8" M1888MII guns mounted on M1894 Disappearing carriages. This was a two story battery with the guns located on the upper level and the magazines below. Shells were moved from the magazine level to the gun loading platform by platform ammunition lifts operated by hand. No shell or powder hoists were provided. Electrical power was furnished by the emplacement power plant.

Battery Farnsworth Armament (edit list)
Model Serial
Manufacturer Carriage Service
1 8" Rifle 278.5" M1888MII 38 Watervliet Disappearing, M1894, #23, Providence 1898-1917 See note 1
2 8" Rifle 278.5" M1888MII 43 Watervliet Disappearing, M1894, #22, Providence 1898-1917 See note 1
Source: RCW Form 1, 20 May 1920, CDSG, Berhow, Mark A. ed, American Seacoast Defenses: A Reference Guide, 2nd Edition, CDSG Press, McLean, VA, 2004, ISBN 0-9748167-0-1, pages 108-109
Note 1: Guns transferred to NYC 1 Oct 1917, carriages ordered scrapped May 1918. CDSG Gun Card Collection from NARA
Battery Farnsworth Plan

World War I (1917-1918)

The U.S. entry into World War I resulted in a widespread removal of large caliber coastal defense gun tubes for service in Europe. Many of the gun and mortar tubes removed were sent to arsenals for modification and mounting on mobile carriages, both wheeled and railroad. Most of the removed gun tubes never made it to Europe and were either remounted or remained at the arsenals until needed elsewhere. The guns of Battery Farnsworth were ordered dismounted for use abroad on 24 Aug 1917. They were transferred to NYC on 1 Oct 1917. The carriages were ordered scrapped in May 1918. Battery Farnsworth was not rearmed.

World War II (1941-1945)

Mine Observation Station (M1) in Battery Farnsworth

A reinforce concrete mine observation station (M1) was built on top of Battery Farnsworth gun emplacement #1 and accepted for service 13 March 1943 at a cost of $ 4,061.

Current Status

Part of Fort Constitution State Historical Site, New Castle Island, Rockingham County, New Hampshire. No period guns or mounts in place.

Location: Fort Constitution, New Castle Island, Rockingham County, New Hampshire

Maps & Images

Lat: 43.07051 Long: -70.711677


  • U.S.Army, Supplement to the Harbor Defense Project, Harbor Defenses of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, (CCA-P-PCC), 1945, CDSG


Visited: 7 Jun 2012

Battery Farnsworth Picture Gallery

Click on the picture to see a larger version. Contribute additional pictures - the more the better!

Personal tools

Google AdSense