Fort Hancock's Battery Potter, constructed from 1890-1894, was the first disappearing gun battery in the U. S. Originally called Lift-gun Battery #1, it was the first and only disappearing gun battery powered by a steam hydraulic lift system. In operation from 1893-1906, it was obsolete by the time it was built because the fastest firing of the gun took over two minutes.
The Army had developed a new gun carriage that used a counterweight to raise and lower the gun called the Buffington-Crozier carriage. This carriage allowed the guns to fire two rounds per minute.
Battery Potter stayed in operation until 1906 because it had a 360 degree range of fire and was capable of covering Sandy Hook Bay. When Battery Arrowsmith was constructed on the bayside of Sandy Hook at Camp Low, Battery Potter's guns were no longer needed.
Battery Potter is open for tours on Saturdays and Sundays in the summer from 1 p.m.- 4:30 p.m. Call 732-872-5970 for dates.
Meet a Ranger or volunteer to go inside this man made cave like structure. See where soldiers once manned the guns. Feel the damp conditions created by twenty foot thick walls of concrete. Learn what advances in machinery and building techniques made possible in the 1890s.
Want to know more about Battery Potter? Click here to read the Historic Structures Report on Battery Potter, Mortar Battery and Battery Gunnison.
Last updated: July 20, 2016