Battery Keyes (1906-1945) - Battery Erasmus Keyes was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 3 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Williams (1), Cumberland County, Maine. The battery was named in G.O. 194, 27 Dec 1904, after Major General Erasmus D. Keyes (Cullum 671), U.S. Volunteers (colonel, 11th U.S. Infantry), who served with distinction during the U.S. Civil War, and who died 14 Oct 1895. Battery construction started in 1903, was completed in 1905 and transferred to the Coast Artillery for use 27 Apr 1906 at a cost of $ 16,893.66. Deactivated in 1945.
Endicott Period (1890-1910)
Part of the Harbor Defense of Portland, Maine.
Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 3" M1902MI guns mounted on M1902MI Pedestal carriages. This was a two story battery with the guns located on the upper level and two magazines below. Shells were moved from the magazine level to the gun loading platform by hand. No shell or powder hoists were provided. Electrical power was furnished by the central power.
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 Keyes were not affected by the World War I redistribution or the following 1920 disarmament program.
World War II (1941-1945)
Battery Keyes was a part of the Harbor Defenses of Portland plan throughout World War II. When the war ended in 1945 the battery was declared surplus. The guns and carriages were processed for salvage on 18 Oct 1945.
Part of Fort Williams Park, Cape Elizabeth, Cumberland County, Maine. No period guns or mounts in place.
Visited: 15 Jun 2012