Fort Story

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Fort Story (1917-Present) - Reservation acquired in 1914 and established as a Coastal Artillery fort in Feb 1917 during World War I. Named for Major General John Patten Story (Cullum 2066), chief of the Artillery School at Fort Monroe. Active military installation.

Fort Story Aerial View
Loading a 16" Howitzer at Fort Story

World War I (1917-1918)

Part of the Harbor Defense of Chesapeake Bay.

As purchased in 1914 Fort Story consisted of several separate parcels of land. Parcel A was the main part of the base and contained Battery Pennington, the railroad artillery, the temporary batteries and searchlights. The other parcels contained mostly support facilities.

Fort Story World War I Batteries (edit list)
Battery
Click on Battery links below
No. Caliber Type Mount Service Years Battery Cost Notes
Battery Pennington
Battery Walke
4 16" LR Howitzer Mounts 1921-1922-1922-1947 $ 332,174 Gun Positions 3 & 4 became
Battery Walke in 1941
Battery Emergency A 2 6" Pedestal Mounts 1917-1919 $ ? Guns from
Battery Montgomery (2),
Fort Monroe, in surf
Battery Emergency B 2 5" Pedestal Mounts 1917-1919 $ ? Guns from Battery Rice,
Fort Andrews, in surf
Source: CDSG
Fort Story Plan


World War II (1941-1945)

Additional land was acquired during World War II and most of Cape Henry became part of Fort Story. Additional 16" guns were added along with anti-aircraft, AMTB batteries and three 6" standard 200 series batteries. An offshore minefield was added to protect the approaches. Fort Story became the most heavily armed coastal battery on the east coast.

A combined HECP-HDCP facility was completed in the summer of 1943 to control ship traffic through Chesapeake Bay. This structure was located on the back of the secondary dune line along Coast Artillery Road on section A of Fort Story. This was an underground, reinforced concrete building, 150' long with two underground entrances.

Fort Story World War II Batteries (edit list)
Battery
Click on Battery links below
No. Caliber Type Mount Service Years Battery Cost Notes
Battery 120
Battery Ketcham
2 16" LR Casemated Barbette 1941-1943-1943-1948 $ 1,553,592 Navy Gun
(16" 1940 Program)
Battery 121 2 16" LR Casemated Barbette 1942-1943-1943-1948 $ 1,881,850 Navy Gun
(16" 1940 Program)
Battery 224
Battery Worcester
2 6" Pedestal Mount 1940-1941-1941-1947 $ ? Prototype for 200 series
Battery 225
Battery Cramer
2 6" LR Shielded Barbette 1941-1942-1943-1948 $ 175,832
Battery 226 2 6" LR Shielded Barbette 1942-1943-1943-1949 $ 234,602
Battery AMTB 19 - Fort Story
Examination Battery
2 3" Pedestal Mount 1942-1945 $ ? Guns from Battery Irwin,
Fort Monroe
Battery 155 - Fort Story (1) 4 155mm Mobile Panama Mounts 1942-194? $ ?
Battery 155 - Fort Story (2) 4 155mm Mobile Panama Mounts 1942-194? $ ?
Battery AMTB 21 - Fort Story 2 90mm Fixed Pedestal Mounts 1942-1942-1943-1945 $ 5,844 Gun pads buried
Battery AMTB 22 - Fort Story 2 90mm Fixed Pedestal Mounts 1943-1950 $ ? In surf
Source: CDSG


Cold War (1947-1991)

After the war the coastal gun batteries were decommissioned. By 1950 all of the batteries were inactive. An Army NIKE missile battery was located on Fort Story from 1958 to 1974.

Current Status

Fort Story is an active sub-installation of the US Army Transportation Center and Fort Eustis. In addition to the active Army units, also stationed at Fort Story are Army Reserve units, US Navy active and Reserve units, and a USMC section. The Coast Guard also maintains a presence at the Cape Henry Lighthouse.


Location: Located on the tip of Cape Henry 18 miles east of Norfolk Virginia at the entrance to Chesapeake Bay. Virginia Beach County, Virginia

Maps & Images

Lat: 36.92739 Long: -76.020756


Sources:

  • Roberts, Robert B., Encyclopedia of Historic Forts: The Military, Pioneer, and Trading Posts of the United States, Macmillan, New York, 1988, 10th printing, ISBN 0-02-926880-X, page 824
  • U.S.Army, Supplement to the Harbor Defense Project of Chesapeake Bay, (HDCB-AP-45), 1 Nov 1945, CDSG

Links:

Visited: 21-27 Jul 2010

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