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In May 1918 two mortars were removed from each pit leaving two mortars remaining in each pit. The mortars were removed because it proved difficult to load and fire four large mortars simultaneously and there was a requirement for mortars in the World War I European theater. Even with the removal of two mortars from each pit the rate of fire did not significantly drop.

The mortars were prepared for shipment and transported on U.S. Barge #5 towed by the U.S. Steamer Wilson to Seattle with the intent of shipping them to the war zone in Europe. This shipment arrived in Seattle on 30 May 1918 with sixteen 12" mortars, two mortars from each mortar pit of the following batteries:

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