Battery Cranston

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Battery Cranston (1898-1942) - Battery Cranston was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 10‑inch coastal gun battery on Fort Winfield Scott (2), San Francisco County, California. The battery was named in G.O. 16, 14 Feb 1902, after 1st. Lt. Arthur Cranston, 4th U.S. Artillery, who was killed at the Lava Beds, California, on 26 Apr 1873, in action against Modoc Indians. Battery construction started 10 Jun 1897, was completed in 1898 and transferred to the Coast Artillery for use 11 Jun 1898 at a cost of $ 55,431.97. Deactivated in 1942.

Battery Cranston, Ramp to Emplacement #1 Building
Battery Cranston, Traverse Buildings
Buildings Built into Battery Cranston

Endicott Period (1890-1910)

Part of the Harbor Defense of San Francisco.

Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 10" M1888MII guns mounted on M1896 carriages. This was a two story battery with the guns located on the upper level and the magazines below. Shells were moved from the magazine level to the gun loading platform by two electric Taylor-Raymond back delivery shell hoists. No powder hoists were provided. Both guns were provided with electrical retracting motors. Electrical power was furnished by the central power plant.

Battery Cranston Armament (edit list)
Model Serial
Manufacturer Carriage Service
1 10" Rifle 340" M1888MII 7 Bethlehem Disappearing, M1896, #29, Bethlehem 1898-1942 See note 1
2 10" Rifle 340" M1888MII 13 Bethlehem Disappearing, M1896, #28, Bethlehem 1898-1942 See note 1
Source: RCW Form 1, 1 Mar 1920, CDSG, Berhow, Mark A. ed, American Seacoast Defenses: A Reference Guide, 2nd Edition, CDSG Press, McLean, VA, 2004, ISBN 0-9748167-0-1, pages 124, 215
Note 1: Guns & carriages ordered scrapped 21 Nov 1942. CDSG Gun Card Collection from NARA
Battery Cranston Plan

World War I (1917-1918)

The U.S. entry into World War I resulted in a widespread removal of large caliber coastal defense gun tubes for service in Europe. Many of the gun and mortar tubes removed were sent to arsenals for modification and mounting on mobile carriages, both wheeled and railroad. Most of the removed gun tubes never made it to Europe and were either remounted or remained at the arsenals until needed elsewhere. Both of the 10" guns of Battery Cranston were reported as listed for transfer for service elsewhere (overseas) on 18 Jul 1918. The guns were later listed for remounting and retention after the war ended.

World War II (1941-1945)

Both guns and carriages were ordered scrapped 21 Nov 1942. There was some indication that the gun breech mechanisms were retained for study because of the large number of rounds fired by both guns (Over 200) and some carriage parts were retained as spares for an unknown period of time.

Current Status

No gun or mounts in place. The Battery has been converted for use by the Golden Gate Bridge and Transportation District as maintenance offices and workshops. Not open to the general public.

Location: Fort Winfield Scott, San Francisco County, California

Maps & Images

Lat: 37.807171 Long: -122.476635

  • Multi Maps from ACME
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  • Elevation: 199.9'



Visited: 22 Aug 2009

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