Battery Dynamite (2)

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Battery Dynamite (2) (1897-1902) - Battery Dynamite (2) was a reinforced concrete, experimental 15 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Welles, Hilton Head, Beaufort County, South Carolina. Deactivated in 1902.

Endicott Period (1890-1910)

Part of the Harbor Defense of Port Royal Sound.

Originally built as an experimental concrete coastal gun battery with one 15" M1886 pneumatic dynamite gun mounted on an M1886 Pneumatic carriage. This was a single story battery with the gun located on the same level as the magazine. Shells were moved from the magazine to the gun loading platform by shell cart. No shell or powder hoists were provided. Electrical power was furnished by the emplacement power plant.

The gun was powered by compressed air that drove the explosive shells out of the gun tubes. The explosive used in the shells was dynamite. Dynamite shells could not be used in normal guns because the impact of the propellent firing would trigger the dynamite and the shells would explode while still in the gun tube. Compressed air drove the shells out of the gun tube at a lower velocity and with less impact. Because of the lower pressure and no explosive propellant the gun tubes were very thin and actually required a cantilevered support to keep the gun tube rigid.

Since the gun was experimental, the contractor provided the guns, carriages and the emplacements as well as the considerable amount of machinery necessary to produce the highly compressed air.

The gun was successfully test fired on 8 Dec 1901. The Battery was deactivated in 1902 and the guns and carriages were removed and later salvaged.

Battery Dynamite (2) Armament (edit list)
Model Serial
Manufacturer Carriage Service
1 15" Rifle 40' M1886 unk Pneumatic Torpedo Pneumatic, M1886,
#unk, Pneumatic Torpedo
1897-1902 See note 1
Source: CDSG, Berhow, Mark A. ed, American Seacoast Defenses: A Reference Guide, 2nd Edition, CDSG Press, McLean, VA, 2004, ISBN 0-9748167-0-1, pages 184-187
Note 1:

Current Status

No period guns or mounts in place.

Location: Fort Welles, Hilton Head, Beaufort County, South Carolina

Maps & Images

Lat: 32.2355 Long: -80.6776



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