Battery Thomas (1898-1917) - Battery Thomas was a reinforced concrete, Endicott Period 4.72 inch coastal gun battery on Fort Morgan (1), Baldwin County, Alabama. The battery was named in G.O. 78, 15 May 1903 after Capt. Evan Thomas, 4th U.S. Artillery, who served with distinction in the U.S. Civil War and who was killed 26 Apr 1873 in action with Modoc Indians at the Lava Beds, California. Battery construction started in 1898, was completed in 1899 and transferred to the Coast Artillery for use 17 Feb 1899 at a cost of $ 15,000. Deactivated in 1917.
Endicott Period (1890-1910)
Part of the Harbor Defense of Mobile, Alabama.
Originally built as an Endicott Period concrete coastal gun battery with two 4.72" rapid-fire Armstrong guns mounted on Armstrong Pedestal carriages. No shell or powder hoists and no power plant, power for lighting derived from Battery Duportail.
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.
The two 4.72" guns and carriages at Battery Thomas were ordered dismounted and prepared for shipment overseas. A status message indicates that all guns carriages and base rings had been removed from Battery Thomas and shipped for service elsewhere. The gun cards indicate they transferred to the Army Transport Service (ATS) in San Francisco on 25 Sep 1917 and they also indicate that they were transferred back to Fort Morgan (1) 3 May 1919 with direction to remount them. On 22 Jul the A.G.O approved the scrapping of the guns and carriages.
Part of Fort Morgan State Park, Baldwin County, Alabama. No period guns or mounts in place.
Visited: 23 Dec 2011, 10 Dec 2009