Fort Totten: 1862, Queens County. Started in 1857 with plans prepared by Cpt. R.E.Lee, constructed in 1862 as a Civil War-era military installation constructed to defend the eastern approach to New York Harbor via the East River, but not completed. Shown on 1871 map as Fort Willets (Willets Point). Named for Joseph Gilbert Totten a Military Engineer from New Haven in 1788. Improved about 1900 with long range coastal guns and became the chief fort for protection of the "back door" to NYC opposite Fort Schuyler.
Status of batteries in 1921 was;
Battery King, 8 - 12" Mortars
Battery Mahan, 2 - unknown, likely 10" or 12" disappearing or non
Battery Graham, 2 - unknown, likely 10" or 12" disappearing or non
Battery Sumner, 2 - unknown, likely 10" or 12" disappearing or non
Battery Stuart, 2 - unknown, likely 3"
Battery Baker, 2 - 3" Pedestal, 2 positions vacant
Battery Burnes, 2 - 3" Pedestal
Anti-Aircraft, 2 - 3"
Electric Mines and Army School of Submarine Defense until 1907. In 1922 built
the prototype U.S. Anti-aircraft installation. During WW2 was Antiaircraft
Artillery Headquarters for Eastern Defense Command. In 1944 base of the North
Atlantic Wing of the Air Transportation Command, 1949 Headquarters for NY-NJ
Sub-Area Command. In about 1954 became the Headquarters, 1st Region ARADCOM,
for the NIKE Systems around New York City. ARADCOM 1st Region deactivated about
1974. Of late a major U.S.Army Reserve post, now in transition to civilian
For more information see Coastal
Defense Study Group (all links open new windows)
Back to Forts T - Z Index
New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs: Military
February 24, 2006