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WWI Gun Emplacements, RI-CT?

 
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BERTY66



Joined: 13 Nov 2011
Posts: 3
Location: EAST PROVIDENCE, RI

PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 3:19 am    Post subject: WWI Gun Emplacements, RI-CT? Reply with quote

Hello all. As a child fifty or sixty years ago we travelled from our home in CT to what I recall was the RI shore, maybe eastern CT also say around Stonington etc., and my dad took me to see remains of large WWI era gun emplacements in the area. They were carved into the bluffs like caves, and there were large doors or openings looking out to sea where the guns could be wheeled into position from within the cave(s), and there remained the steel tracks that the guns travelled on, imbedded into the concrete floors. The guns of course were long gone, but the rest of these cave-like structures remained.

Do any of these still exist? If so where and are they accessible to the public?

Thank you, A. Lee, E. Prov., RI, aglee@aol.com
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brian



Joined: 10 Sep 2007
Posts: 91
Location: denver

PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rails and doors sounds more like a searchlight emplacement,

usually if you study wikimapia, youll find some one has probably marked known locations. yould be surprised how much stuff you can spot on the satelite photos,
http://wikimapia.org/#lat=41.3086318&lon=-71.8862486&z=15&l=0&m=b&search=Stonington%20Ct.

BB
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Last edited by brian on Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Z-man



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
Posts: 330
Location: CONNECTICUT

PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi:

Close to Stonington, you have:
-------------------------------------------
Ft. Mansfield, ( Napatree Point / Watch Hill, RI)
Ft. H.G. Wright (Fishers Island, NY)
Ft. Michie (Great Gull Island, NY)
Ft. Terry (Plum Island)
plus a number of other sites....

That being said, the only train track I remember are on Ft Michie leading to Battery JMK Davis. I believe they were for moving ammo, and not guns.
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BERTY66



Joined: 13 Nov 2011
Posts: 3
Location: EAST PROVIDENCE, RI

PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 11:53 pm    Post subject: Further to WWI gun emplacements Reply with quote

Hello again. As I recall it these were curved train tracks which led to the front edge of each opened door location, presumably where the artillery piece was in place. It could well have been rails for ammo, not moving the guns themselves. The "cave" I recall was large, maybe a half acre in size, leading to several large doors facing in different directions, I actually don't remember doors per se, just large open spaces looking out onto the sea or passage (as with East and West passages into Narragansett Bay).

Does anyone know if these are still existing, and/or can they be visited by the public. A friend at lunch volunteered Fort Varnum (?) located on West passage, maybe in Saunderstown or so, which he thought could have housed one or more of these emplacements.

Thanks all. A. Lee, E. Prov., RI, aglee@aol.com
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Z-man



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
Posts: 330
Location: CONNECTICUT

PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Camp Varnum is still in use by RING. They had some smaller, open gun batteries, but nothing like you describe. There is a large gun battery (2 16" battleship guns) at Fisherman's Memorial Campground at Point Judith. On Jamestown Island, there is Fort Getty, Fort Burnside (Beavertail), and Fort Wetherill. All are open. Also Fort Kearny further up the bay where there is now a URI campus.

For Long Island Sound, Fort Mansfield is the only one you can get to easily. Fishers Island discourages visitors, and the gun batteries are not open to the public. Fort Michie is an island nature preserve and not open to the public. Fort Terry is on an island, and is a secret gov. lab.

Usually the best way to see these kind of places is on the CDSG tour - unfortunately, I just hosted it in Narragasett Bay, earlier this year.
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BERTY66



Joined: 13 Nov 2011
Posts: 3
Location: EAST PROVIDENCE, RI

PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply, plus tour? Reply with quote

Hello (and especially to Z-man I believe): Thank you greatly for your replies, they have started my thinking going on this.

I would like to know when the next tour will be, either of CT or RI sites, can you inform me on this? Also Long Island if any thing gets going there.

What may I ask is RING? Is Varnum open to public? And once again I am seeking emplacements that were "caved" into bluffs overlooking ocean or LI sound, not open gun emplacements (at least at this point)....which of the forts might have these?

Regards, A. Lee, E. Prov. RI, aglee@aol.com
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Z-man



Joined: 24 Aug 2007
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Location: CONNECTICUT

PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

RING = Rhode Island National Guard.

My best guess based on your description would be one of the "100 Series" batteries built during WW2. They held 2, 16" battleship guns and were "casemated" or covered over to protect against air attack. Between the 2 covered gun positions was about 600' or so of tunnels, with rooms for tools and equipment, shells, powder, a power plant, etc.

The guns didn't move on rails, and there are no rails in the floor. There are, however, overhead rails upon which the 2000+ lb shells were moved.

There are two of these batteries at Point Judith. Only the one at Fisherman's Memorial State Park is accessible. Its officially marked "Do Not Enter". The one that sounds more to me like your description is at Mount Prospect on Fishers Island, NY. It is in use by NUWC (Naval Underwater Warfare Center) and isn't open to the public.

Mount Prospect, FI, NY
http://binged.it/uCayT9

Point Judith - Fisherman's Memorial State Park.
http://binged.it/v2RBYq
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