Fort Andrews East Side Fire Control Tower
Posted by: pgrig
N 42° 18.071 W 070° 55.707
19T E 341042 N 4685018
Quick Description: This brick tower, built in 1904, used to hold the observation station for the Fort Commander of this Coast Artillery fort in Boston Harbor. Nearby are the concrete remains of three gun batteries that used to guard the channel into the inner harbor.
Location: Massachusetts, United States
Date Posted: 2/7/2012 9:47:52 AM
Waymark Code: WMDNWZ
The second story of this old fire control tower used to hold a Depression Position Finder (DPF), a type of telescope used to find range and azimuth (direction) for aiming the coast artillery guns of Fort Andrews. The fort itself was established on Peddocks Island in 1898, and served throughout WW1 and WW2, until being decommissioned in 1948. It is now part of the Boston Harbor Islands national park, and is reachable by boat from nearby Hull, MA.
Northeast of the tower is the old gun line of the fort, with the remains of three gun batteries. Battery Rice, on the western end of the line, once held two 5-inch guns. Its right-hand gun platform now holds a fire control bunker, built there after the guns were removed. The next battery in line was Battery McCook, which held two 6-inch guns M1900. On the right hand end of the line was Battery Bumpus, which mounted two 3-inch guns M1902.
The fort once had two batteries of 12-inch seacoast mortars, a total of 16 weapons that could throw 1,000-pound shells for a distance of eight miles. These mortars were located in gun pits at the base of the eastern ridge, along the "main street" of the fort. Two of the mortar pits (the westerly ones of Battery Whitman) can still be visited, along with the magazines of the battery, while the other two pits (Battery Cushing) along the street to the east, have been filled in with earth and rubble.
Many of the old buildings of the fort survive, and several of the old gun platforms. High on the western ridge (and surrounded by thick brush, poison ivy, and thorns) are two more old fire control positions and an abandoned radio station from the early 1900s.
Related Website: [Web Link]
Supplementary Related Website: [Web Link]
Admission Fee: None
The fort is generally open 7 days a week. See the Boston Harbor Islands park website.
Posting a picture(s) of the location would be nice although not required.