Historic California Posts, Camps, Stations and Airfields
Long Beach Fire Control Site No. 9
Long Beach Fire Control Station No. 9 in the tower of the former Hilton Hotel (Long Beach Gazette)
The Army acquired 0.02 acre from the Hilton Hotel in Long Beach, California under Lease No. W-868-ENG-4208 for Fire Control Site No. 9. An acquisition date was not listed on the Realty Control File Summary, however from 1942 to 1944 a number of fire control sites were constructed along the coastal area of Southern California as part of the Harbor Defenses of Los Angeles.
The purpose of a fire control site was to sight and obtain directional bearings on approaching enemy targets. Bearing information would then be relayed to another defensive position. A 1943 as-built drawing shows the fire control station on top of the Hilton Hotel in Long Beach. The drawing shows minor improvements to the tower of the hotel, designed to house sighting instruments. This station provided fire control data for the following batteries
The lease for 0.02 acre for Fire Control Site No. 9 was terminated on 28 October 1952. The former Hilton Hotel site is now occupied by The Breakers Hotel, a senior citizens housing complex.. According to the Executive Director of The Breakers Hotel, only one Army improvement remains in the building. She described this structure as a "gun turret and mounting", which is located in the tower on top of the building. It is likely that this structure was used as a mounting for a sighting instrument.
Corps of Engineers Diagrams and Construction Records
Sources:Los Angeles District, US Army Corps of Engineers and the Coast Defense Study Group
Other Online Histories
The Breakers Hotel Base End Station, Long Beach, California
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Updated 19 December 2016