Battery Gardner

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Battery Gardner (1924-1946) - Battery Augustus P. Gardner was a reinforced concrete, World War I 12 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Ruckman, Essex County, Massachusetts. The battery was named in G.O. 9, 11 Feb 1920, after Major Augustus P. Gardner, former member of Congress from Massachusetts, who died at Camp Wheeler, Georgia, 14 Jan 1918, while serving with the 121st Infantry. Funds allocated 16 Mar 1918 in the amount of $365,000. Deactivated in 1946.

Fort Ruckman, Battery Gardner Casemate #2 Rear Entrance
Fort Ruckman, Battery Gardner Top
Fort Ruckman, Battery Gardner Casemate #2

World War I (1917-1918)

Part of the Harbor Defense of Boston, Massachusetts.

Originally built as a World War I concrete coastal gun battery with two 12" M1895MI-A4 guns mounted on M1917-A2 Barbette carriages. This was a single story battery with the guns located on open concrete gun pads on the same level as the common magazine and support structure between them. The common magazine and support structure was an earth covered reinforced concrete building that contained shell rooms, powder rooms, a power plant, plotting rooms and personnel facilities. Shells were moved from the magazine to the gun loading platform by shot carts. No shell or powder hoists were provided or needed.

The two guns were mounted on circular concrete pads with sunken gun pits. The guns and gun crews were completely in the open with no protection from incoming fire or from aircraft. The M1917 carriage and the sunken gun pit allowed a gun elevation of 35 degrees, giving the gun a range of over 16 miles.

Battery Gardner Armament (edit list)
Empl
No
Caliber
Type
Barrel
Length
Model Serial
No
Manufacturer Carriage Service
Dates
Notes
1 12" Rifle 442.56" M1895MI A4 25 Watervliet Barbette, M1917-A2,
#28, Watertown
1924-1946 See note 1
2 12" Rifle 442.56" M1895MI A4 42 Watervliet Barbette, M1917-A2,
#29, Watertown
1924-1946 See note 1
Source: CDSG, Berhow, Mark A. ed, American Seacoast Defenses: A Reference Guide, 2nd Edition, CDSG Press, McLean, VA, 2004, ISBN 0-9748167-0-1, pages 154-155
Note 1: Guns transferred from Watervliet 23 Jun 1922, carriages transferred from Watertown 29 Dec 1919. Exact assignment of guns and carriages to emplacements not determined. CDSG Gun Card Collection from NARA
Battery Gardner 1923, before being Casemated)


World War II (1941-1945)

Battery Gardner was a part of the Harbor Defenses of Boston plan throughout World War II. The battery was casemated during the war to provide overhead protection for the guns and crews. When the war ended in 1945 the battery was declared surplus. The guns and carriages were processed for salvage in 1946.

Battery Gardner Casemated 1945


Current Status

Part of Baley's Hill City Park, Nahant, Essex County, Massachusetts. No period guns or mounts in place.


Location: Baley's Hill City Park, Nahant, Essex County, Massachusetts.

Maps & Images

Lat: 42.420041 Long: -70.930417

Sources:

  • U.S.Army, Supplement to the Harbor Defense Project of Boston, Massachusetts, (HDB-AN-45), 31 Jan 1945, CDSG

Links:

Visited: 9 Jun 2012



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