Historic California Posts, Camps, Stations and Airfields
Fort Pio Pico

Fort Pio Pico
by Robert B. Roberts
In 1901 a sub-post was constructed across the channel on North Island's, Zuniga Shoal Track and named Fort Pio Pico. The post was named after the last Mexican governor of Alta California, Pio Pico. The fort contained a battery of two 3-inch, 15 pound, model 1903 seacoast guns which were installed in 1904. Except for caretakers who lived at the fort, soldiers crossed the channel daily from Fort Rosecrans to man these guns. With 1917 and the thrust of the United States into World War I., Fort Rosecrans served as Headquarters for the Coast Defense of San Diego with Fort Pio Pico and the San Diego Barracks being its sub-posts, During the war Battery McGrath's 5-inch guns were removed and shipped overseas. But in 1919 with the abandonment of Fort Pio Pico the two 3-inch guns that had been there were brought to Fort Rosecrans and installed in the gunless Battery McGrath

The only structures built by the Army at Fort Pio Pico were Battery Meed and a cable terminal box. T. The post was abandoned by the Army in the 1920s and subsequently turned over to the Navy with the rest of the old Army Rockwell Air Field on North Island (est. 1917) in 1935. Subsequent construction has obliterated these structures and even the site itself.
Fort Pio Pico, circa 1910
Batteries at Fort Pio Pico
Endicott Period

 Battery name

 Number of Guns

 Type of Gun

 Type of Carriage




 James Meed


 3 Inch M1903

   M1903 Pedestal



 1919 (1)
(1) Battery Meed was damaged by storm waves in 1914. After Battery Meed's guns were removed in 1919, the post and the rest of North Island was turned over to the Navy in 1935. All trace has been destroyed by the development of the Naval Air Station.
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Updated 8 February 2016