Battery Gibson

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Battery Gibson (1899-1917) - Battery Gibson was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 8 inch coastal gun battery on Fort DuPont (1), Delaware. The battery was named in G.O. 78, 25 May 1903, after Col. James Gibson, 4th U.S. Rifle, who was killed 17 Sep 1814, in action at Fort Erie, Canada. Battery construction started 1 Apr 1898, was completed on 31 Dec 1898 and transferred to the Coast Artillery for use on 12 jan 1899 at a cost of $ 67,956.04. Deactivated in 1917.

Battery Gibson History

Part of the Harbor Defense of the Delaware.

Endicott Period

Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 8" M1888MII guns mounted on M1896 disappearing carriages. Battery Gibson and Battery Read were built as one large four emplacement battery with the two 12" guns of Battery Read placed in the left most and right most emplacements and the two 8" guns of Battery Gibson placed in the two center emplacements. Battery Gibson was a two story battery with the guns mounted on the upper level and the magazines below. Two Taylor-Raymond back delivery shell hoists moved the shells from the magazines to the shell loading level. No powder hoists were provided.

Electric power originally furnished by an internal power plant that was upgraded in 1910 and again in 1918, even after the battery was deactivated.

Battery Gibson Armament (edit list)
Empl
No
Caliber
Type
Barrel
Length
Model Serial
No
Manufacturer Carriage Service
Dates
Notes
1 8" Rifle 278.5" M1888MII 19 Bethlehem Disappearing, M1896, #13, Pond 1899-1917 See note 1
2 8" Rifle 278.5" M1888MII 20 Bethlehem Disappearing, M1896, #8, Pond 1899-1917 See note 1
Source: RCW Form 1, 30 Sep 1924, RCB, 31 Dec 1903, CDSG, Berhow, Mark A. ed, American Seacoast Defenses: A Reference Guide, 2nd Edition, CDSG Press, McLean, VA, 2004, ISBN 0-9748167-0-1, pages 110-111,208
Note 1: CDSG Gun Card Collection from NARA


World War I

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.

Both Battery Read and Battery Gibson were regarded as of insufficient military value to warrant provision of manning personnel and ammunition on 27 Oct 1915, prior to the entry of the U.S. into World War I. On 24 Aug 1917 the guns were ordered dismounted for use abroad. In November 1917 both guns were dismounted and shipped to Watervliet. In June 1918 both carriages were dismounted to be sold as scrap and in 1922 the carriages were removed and sold.

Current Status

No period guns or mounts in place.


Location: Fort DuPont, New Castle County, Delaware

Maps & Images

Lat: 39.5682412 Long: -75.5784166

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Visited: 6 Aug 2010



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