Battery Mahan

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Battery Mahan (1900-1918) - Battery Mahan was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 12 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Totten (3), New York. The battery was named in G.O. 43, 4 Apr 1900, after Dennis Hart Mahan (Cullum 361), professor of engineering, United States Military Academy, 1832-1871. Battery construction started in 1898, was completed 12 Oct 1900 and transferred to the Coast Artillery for use 12 Oct 1900 at a cost of $ 88,534.94. Deactivated in 1918.

Fort Totten, Battery Mahan BC Station
Fort Totten, Battery Mahan Gun Emplacement
Fort Totten, Battery Mahan

Endicott Period

Part of the Harbor Defense of Eastern New York.

Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 12" M1895 guns mounted on M1897 disappearing carriages. This was a two story battery with the guns on the upper level and the magazines on the lower level.

Battery Mahan, Battery Sumner and Battery Graham formed a single battery as far as construction was concerned and they formed the main gun line at Fort Totten (3). Battery Sumner's two 8" gun emplacements were place at either end of the main gun line. All six of the gun emplacements of the main gun line were originally known as Battery Mahan, and so named in 1900. In 1903 the main gun line was administratively divided into the three named batteries.

Two back delivery Hodges shell hoists were originally provided to move the shells from the magazine level to the gun loading platform. The original hoists were changed out for Taylor-Raymond shell hoists. No powder hoists were provided. Electrical power for lighting and hoist motors was provided by the post power plant.

Battery Mahan Armament (edit list)
Model Serial
Manufacturer Carriage Service
1 12" Rifle 442.56" M1895 21 Watervliet Disappearing, M1897, #9, Robert Poole 1900-1918 See note 1
2 12" Rifle 442.56" M1895 23 Watervliet Disappearing, M1897, #8, Robert Poole 1900-1918 See note 1
Source: RCW Form 1, 15 Apr 1920, Coast Defense Study Group, Berhow, Mark A. ed, American Seacoast Defenses: A Reference Guide, 2nd Edition, CDSG Press, McLean, VA, 2004, ISBN 0-9748167-0-1, pages 148-149, 206
Note 1: CDSG Gun Card Collection from NARA
Battery Mahan Plan

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. On 18 Jul 1918 the two 12" guns of Battery Mahan were listed as having been transferred to service abroad.

Current Status

No period guns or mounts in place.

Location: Fort Totten (3), Queens County, New York

Maps & Images

Lat: 40.795431 Long: -73.779459



Visited: 21 Aug 2010

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