Living History at Ft. Hancock, NJ (October 30-31, 2004)
The ability to demonstrate the functioning parts of the gun to include the
breechblock was a major hit with the public. In the photo below, Battery 1st
Sergeant Murray explains to visitors the size of the full projectile and charge
as well as the functioning of the breechblock. In the background one of the
battery members works hard cleaning the dirt and debris from the screw box.
At this time, we could only close the breech half way.
Another major restoration success was the National Park Service's installation of new and historically correct roll-down doors for the magazine entrances. This major effort really makes the battery look "new"! In combination with the new and restored metal doors on other rooms of the battery, these doors greatly improved the overall appearance and functioning of the battery. They also serve a very practical purpose. When we relied on the bar door, leaves and trash constantly entered the battery. With the new roll-down doors, this is now a problem of the past. Our other major draw was the plotting room. In the photo above the battery commander provides an overview of fire control.
Throughout the course of the day people gather on the gun deck to listen to the battery troops explain the functioning of the gun. A steady stream of visitors was seen throughout the day. Additional restoration projects at Battery Gunnison (New Peck) are under way and will be unveiled over time.
The next event at Fort Hancock is scheduled for May 21-22, 2005.
For more information, visit the Army Ground Forces Association Website at