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BATTERY SLAUGHTER



 

This Endicott battery was named in GO 16, dated February 14, 1902, in honor of Lt. William A Slaughter, Fourth Infantry, who was killed by White River (Wenatchee) Indians at Brannons Prairie, Washington Territory, 1855. Graduated from West Point in 1848, Brevet 2nd Lieutenant 2nd Infantry, July 1 1848, 2nd lieutenant 4th Infantry, November 6 1848. 1st Lieutenant, July 22nd 1854. Born in Kentucky, appointed from Indiana.


 ORDNANCE


This battery was armed with 3-8-inch BL Rifles model 1888 nos. 2, 3, and 8, were fabricated by the Watervliet Arsenal. The gun weighted 32218 lbs. and cost of the guns was $16,875.


These guns were mounted on disappearing carriages model 1896, Carriage 30 was manufactured by the Walker Company; Carriage 25 was made by Morgan Engineering Co, and Carriage 2 was made by the Pond Machine Tool Co. And the carriage cost $14,000.00.


AMMUNITION SERVICE


As to ammunition storage and service, this 8-inch battery it had a Shell Room and a Powder Room. The movement of ammunition must be very rapid and it is the duty of the Engineer Department to do so. The means which must be provided for moving ammunition, depend of course upon the weight and bulk of the piece to be moved. There are several ways of moving projectile, in this battery they moved them from the shell room being suspended from a trolley moving on a trolley rail hung from the ceiling, also a shell truck furnished by the Ordnance Dept. Each trolley carried a half-ton Yale-Weston triplex block.


As to vertically movement of the shell, an appliance for seizing hold of the shell, they used a tongs, which looked like a pair if ice tongs, except there were three rather they two, two on one side and one on the other, and was located to close between the two other tongs, then opened wide and placed as near the center of gravity as possible, then they are closed and ready to be moved.


As far as Powder Service for this battery, it was shipped to the battery in metal cases and stored in racks, that they were shipped in, in most cases, there ends projecting into the passageway. When a cartridge was desired the solder strip was to be pulled of without moving the cartridge case from the rack, this loosens the top of the case and the cartridge is then pulled out, leaving the case still fastened in it's proper place. All the powder is now carried in a handbarrow, by four men, and is taken to the gun.


The ammunition supply for this battery was stored in the shell room which was 10 X 24 (there were 3 of them) and held 300. The size of the powder magazine was 16 X 25 and 10 X 20 and held 1100. Larger amounts could be put in the shell and power rooms, by stacking higher or closer together.


CONSTRUCTION


As with any battery is to be built in any Engineer district, as much information as may be necessary is sent to the district officer. See the Appendices for the complete procedure.


July 11 1898 the Dept called for plans and estimates for the construction of two emplacements for this battery, and plans were submitted and an estimate calling for an expenditure of $43,000, which was allotted in October 1898. An additional allotment of $24,000 was made in December 1898 for the construction of a third emplacement at this battery.


Construction of this battery began in 1899, with the grading and clearing of the site; there were approximately 5300 cu ids of sand and dirt excavated. On the timber used in making the forms, in all cases it will be dressed lumber will be used, after they are in place, they put in and over 1800 lbs. of reinforcement were put inside them. Then the next step is to put in a foundation.


At this stage they started pouring over 975 cu. ids of concrete, and 1,275 cu. ft of finished concrete, after that over 5,000 of backfill and top fill most of which came from the cut made in front of this battery in order to make a clear line of fire in that direction. The cut was made sufficient for the additional gun which is to be placed in emplacement #4 of this battery, yet to be constructed, the work on this battery went very fast, and by March 31 1899 very little was yet to be done. The work went with speed, and at the close of the fiscal year all the engineering work was completed except a few small things. In October the balance of the base rings were set, and by December the guns were mounted, and the battery was turned over to the Artillery the following month.


At the close of the fiscal year the engineering work was completed except the hanging of doors, installation of trolleys. Electric lighting plant and plumbing work of the latrines, sewers and water, top dressing a few of the slopes, Terrepleins were macdranized and the gutters put in and building a road to the battery.


In the magazines of this battery hollow-partition tile were put in the magazines to form and air space. It was placed in the concrete 2 feet from the wall of the room and extended from 1 foot below the floor level to 2 1/2 feet above the ceiling.


The bottom was drained into the sewer system and the top connected by a 3" pipe with the passageway for ventilation. A damp-proof course was laid over the magazine consisting of a layer of asphalt about 1" thick placed 21/2 feet above the ceiling on a level with the top of the partition tile and extending to the outer edge of the tile In July 1899, the road was finished, all of the slopes top dressed and one base ring set. During August the setting of the doors was finished and the trolleys installed. During September the painting of the doors and plumbing of the latrine was finished.


In October the remaining base rings were installed and a commencement made on erecting the light plant. In December the light plant was finished, the guns were mounted, in April the concrete surfaces exposed to view from the bay were painted with paraffin paint to conceal them.


The battery was 325 ' across, and 120 ' deep, and 120' between the guns, and had three cranes, this battery also had 5 more rooms, 4 of them were 10' x 16' and one was 16 x 221/2', and two galleries behind the powder and shells room one was 8' x 64 and the other was 8' x 39', the size of these rooms were changed a couple of times before building, theses sizes are off the approved construction plans. I do not know what the other rooms were, may have been a C.O. Room, Guard Room or Oil Room, plans do not show, and with three sets of stairs leading down the slope to the road behind the battery.


When the structure is completed the district Engineer officer prepares the so called "transfer drawing" then the Engineer officer and the local Coast Artillery officer, make an inspection of the structure, and all was in order, the keys, are transferred to the Artillery commander. Completed in 1900 and transferred on January 23 1900 a cost of $71,062.63.


 POWER


This battery was electrified in December of 1900, it used 3.46 kW, and had one 25 kW Hornsby-Akroyd horizontal oil engine; De La Vergne and one 1.875-kw, 125 volt, direct, multi-polar belted dynamo; Westinghouse Elec. Mfg. Co; purchased January 10, 1900. Which was installed in the engine room with some space partitioned off for the radiator, and supplied current for Slaughter, Sherwood, Blaney, and Baldwin, F/9 Slaughter, F/5, F/6 and a type A switchboard (lights in building only) the feeder lines were in the engine room in the generator panel of the emplacement plant switchboard, being there were no motors in the battery. Transferred to Artillery on January 23, 1900, at a cost of $1,293.00.


MISCELLANEOUS


This battery was connected to water and sewer and had a syphon latrine (the only one of the Cemetery batteries to have one) and it data transmission was by telephone. This battery was ventilated by natural draft, 20" X 20" concrete shaft with hinged iron cover from the magazine. Trunnion elevation in battery 88.7, Datum M.L.L.W. This battery was also referred to as a National Cemetery Battery.


ABANDONMENT


This battery saw service from 1885 to 1917. The three 8-inch guns in this battery were dismounted and Shipped back to the Watervliet Arsenal in November 17 1917, C.O. Per tel. So Pac CAD dated 12 October 1917. After that it was used for storage until most of this battery was buried during the construction of the southern approach road to the Golden Gate bridge during the 1930s. One corner of concrete remains to be seem today by Battery Blaney, but in the last years, two of the shell room were found, and are intact. And there has been a clean up of the battery, and it seems it was just buried and not broken up. This emplacement was turned over to the jurisdiction of the Presidio of San Francisco in accordance with and adjustment of the administrative boundary between Fort Scott and The Presidio of San Francisco.



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