Historic California Posts, Camps,
Stations and Airfields
Fort McDowell: Battery Ledyard
(Anti-Aircraft Battery No. 2)
by Justin Ruhge
Three fixed three-inch Model 1917M1 on
fixed Model 1917 mounts, were placed on the top of Rodeo Hill
east of the two fire control stations associated with Battery
Wallace. The first two guns placed there in 1925 were Nos. 68
and 196 from the Watertown Arsenal. In 1933 they were dismounted
and sent to the Watervliet Arsenal in New York. A year later
two new guns, Nos. 142 and 151 were received and mounted. In
1937 an additional gun was mounted. Each battery had a shelter
for the director and the switchboard, and a tool and oil house.
The director was located on a hill 800 feet north of the battery.
The battery was assigned four searchlights, an observation post,
and three machine gun platoons.
For most of its history, the Site was
named simply "Anti-Aircraft Battery". At some time
during World War II, it was designated as "Antiaircraft
Battery No. 2", a designation that was used for the remainder
of its operational history. This batter does not show up on the
November 1945 tactical map.
Battery Ledyard built in 1901 was armed
with two 5 inch model M1900 guns manufactured by Watervliet Arsenal
mounted in M1903 pedestals. These guns were the new generation
of light caliber guns that could fire as many as 20 to 30 rounds
per minute for short periods of time and had a range of approximately
7.5 miles. These guns were loaded with metal cartridges weighing
about 84 pounds, which contained the projectile and the propellant,
unlike the 8 inch guns which were loaded separately with bags
of gunpowder. The gun weighed over11,000 lbs, and cost over $6,000,
the carriage weighted about 15,000 lbs, at a cost over of $8,000.