Battery Mendell

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Battery Mendell (1905-1943) - Battery Mendell was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 12 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Barry, Marin County, California. The battery was named in G.O. 120, 22 Nov 1902 after Col. George H. Mendell, U.S. Corps of Engineers, who served with distinction in the U.S. Civil War, and who died at San Francisco, California, 19 Oct 1902. Battery construction started July 1901 and was transferred to the Coast Artillery for use 8 Jun 1905 at a cost of $ 128,016.00. Deactivated in July 1943.

Battery Mendell BC Station
Battery Mendell Gun Emplacement #1

Endicott Period (1890-1910)

Part of the Harbor Defense of San Francisco.

Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 12" M1895MI guns mounted on M1897 Disappearing carriages. The battery had a self contained electric power plant powered by a 54 hp gasoline with a 25 kw generator. The gun carriage was equipped with two retracting electric motors but no traversing, elevating or depressing motors.

Originally equipped with two Hodges back delivery projectile hoists it was slated to be converted to Taylor-Raymond electric projectile hoists modified for long point projectiles in 1914 but available documentation does not reflect that it happened. Pictures taken in the early 1940s do show long point projectiles in use with these guns.

Battery Mendell Armament (edit list)
Empl
No
Caliber
Type
Barrel
Length
Model Serial
No
Manufacturer Carriage Service
Dates
Notes
1 12" Rifle 442.56" M1895MI 4 Bethlehem Disappearing, M1897, #30, Midvale 1905-1943 See note 1
2 12" Rifle 442.56" M1895MI 6 Bethlehem Disappearing, M1897, #31, Midvale 1905-1943 See note 1
Source: RCB, 31 Dec 1909, CDSG, 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, 215
Note 1: Carriages shipped in 13 Feb 1902 and salvaged 24 Jul 1943. Guns shipped to Watervliet 6 Dec 1943. CDSG Gun Card Collection from NARA
Battery Mendell 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 Mendell were not affected by the World War I redistribution or the following 1920 disarmament program.

World War II (1941-1945)

The Battery remained active until 1943 when the casemating of Battery Wallace (2) was completed and that Battery was reactivated. The gun tubes were removed and sent back to the Watervliet Arsenal 6 Dec 1943. The carriages were ordered scrapped on 24 Jul 1943.

Current Status

Part of the Golden Gate Recreation Area (GGNRA) administered by the National Park Service. No gun or mounts in place.


Location: Fort Barry, Marin County, California

Maps & Images

Lat: 37.82202 Long: -122.531395

Sources:

Links:

Visited: 19 Aug 2009

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