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CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,
UNITED STATES ARMY.
OFFICE OF THE CHIEF OF ENGINEERS,
UNITED STATES ARMY, Washington, D. C., September 19, 1893.
SIR: I have the honor to present for your information the following report upon the duties and operations of the Engineer Department for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1893:
OFFICERS OF THE CORPS OF ENGINEERS.
The number of officers holding commissions in the Corps of Engineers, U. S. Army, at the end of the fiscal year was 121.
Since the last annual report the corps has lost three of its officersCol. David C. Houston, who died at New York City, May 18, 1893; Maj. L. Cooper Overman, who resigned September 20, and Capt. Edward Maguire, who died at Philadelphia, Pa., October 11, 1892.
There were added to the corps, by promotion of graduates of the Military Academy, two additional second lieutenants, July 28, 1892, and five, June 28, 1893.
On the 30th of June, 1893, the officers were distributed as follows: Commanding the Corps of Engineers and the Engineer Department. Office of the Chief of Engineers and Light-House Board Office of the Chief of Engineers....
Board of Engineers, fortifications, river and harbor works, California Débris Commission, and Division Engineer..
Board of Engineers, Board of Ordnance and Fortification, and Division Engi
Fortifications, river and harbor works, and Division Engineer...
Board of Engineers, Mississippi River Commission, Division Engineer, and Board of Visitors.
River and harbor works and Division Engineer
Board of Engineers, fortifications, river and harbor works, and Board of Visitors
Public buildings and grounds and Light-House Board
Mississippi River Commission, Missouri River Commission, and light-house districts..
River and harbor works and light-house districts.
Fortifications, post of Willets Point, U. S. Engineer School, and Battalion of Engineers
Fortifications, river and harbor works, and California Débris Commission
River and harbor works and Missouri River Commission.
River and harbor works, California Débris Commission, and light-house district.
Missouri River Commission
Leave of absence, including five graduates of the Military Academy.
The officers detached were on duty as follows:
Lieut. Col. John W. Barlow and Lieut. David DuB. Gaillard, members of Inter-
Maj. Oswald H. Ernst, Superintendent Military Academy
Maj. Milton B. Adams, engineer ninth and eleventh light-house districts.
Capt. James L. Lusk and Lieuts. Mason M. Patrick and Charles S. Bromwell,
Lieuts. Lansing H. Beach, Joseph E. Kuhn, and Henry C. Newcomer, on duty
Lieut. Cassius E. Gillette, engineer officer, department of the Missouri..
During the past fiscal year projects have been prepared for the defense of Tybee Roads and the entrance of Savannah River, Georgia; of Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island; of Charleston, S. C., and Pensacola, Fla., and a partial project for the defense of New Orleans, La.
The complete projects have received the approval of the Secretary of War; and in submitting an estimate for gun and mortar emplacements, the commencement of work on each of these new projects has been . contemplated, as well as the continuation of work on projects hitherto prepared. The amount of this estimate is $1,629,126; and this it is proposed to apply almost wholly to new works. While there are balances on hand from previous appropriations, they justify no reduction of this estimate, as they pertain to the construction of emplacements now progressing. The proposed new works are emplacements for three 12-inch, seven 10-inch, and three 8-inch guns, and four mortar batteries. Should these works be authorized, provision will still not have been made for mounting all the guns which the Ordnance Department expects to be completed by the end of the present fiscal year. Such provision will be lacking for five 12-inch and thirty-one 8-inch guns. can it be hastily provided. The estimate for one disappearing battery for five guns contains such amounts as these: 25,210 cubic yards of concrete; 26,000 cubic yards of excavation, and 12,000 of embankment. Evidently the element of time can not be disregarded in the construction of fortifications.
Funds hitherto appropriated have been allotted to the construction of emplacements for modern rifled guns and mortars as follows:
The projected fortifications at the above localities and the progress made in their construction are as follows:
Portland Harbor, Maine.-Officer in charge, Lieut. Col. P. C. Hains, Corps of Engineers.
The approved project for the defense of this harbor contemplates, for the present, an armament of eighteen 12-inch guns on lifts, ten 10-inch and ten 8-inch guns on disappearing carriages, forty-eight 12-inch mortars, and submarine mines to be operated from four mining casemates.
Under an allotment of $110,000, from the appropriation of July 23, 1892, the construction of emplacements for two 10-inch guns was commenced early in April, 1893, and has been in progress since.
A cement storehouse of about 2,000 barrels capacity, a sand bin, and one for broken stone have been built; also a tramway from the latter to the site of the battery. Needed repairs to the old buildings have been made. A stone-crushing plant is being established. Sites for both gun platforms and for one magazine have been cleared; the site for the second magazine is partly cleared and the rock excavation for the road back of the emplacements is in progress. Earth obtained in clearing the site has been placed for use as cover. Much rock excavation of a difficult character has been necessary.
One mining casemate was completed during the year at a cost of $8.979.75, and the construction of two more was commenced June 1, 1893. Both sites have been cleared and the excavation, which is almost entirely in rock, is progressing.
Boston Harbor, Massachusetts.-Officer in charge, Lieut. Col. S. M. Mansfield, Corps of Engineers, with Capt. S. S. Leach, Corps of Engineers, under his immediate orders until December 7, 1892.
The approved project for the defense of this harbor contemplates, for the present, an armament of twelve 12-inch guns on lifts, fifteen 10-inch and five 8-inch guns on disappearing carriages, one hundred and twenty-eight 12-inch mortars, and submarine mines to be operated from four mining casemates.
At the beginning of the year three emplacements for 10-inch guns were under construction. At one of these the work has been carried
nearly as far as is practicable until the placing of the platform is begun. At the two other emplacements about half of the old masonry and earth slopes, which must be displaced by the new work, had been removed, and about 4,000 cubic yards of concrete had been put in place, or sufficient to construct the masonry of about one-half of one
of the emplacements. More than half of the sand and concrete stone needed for the new work had been collected and stored.
Under an allotment of $58,000, from the appropriation of July 23, 1892, the construction of a fourth emplacement for a 10-inch gun was commenced in December, 1892. The necessary working plant has been collected and arranged; about 2, 500 cubic yards of earth has been excavated and placed in new embankment. Contracts are in force for the delivery of the necessary concrete materials, and the receipt and storage of sand, cement, and stone has begun.
At the beginning of the year the construction of a battery for sixteen 12-inch mortars was in progress.
During the year the masonry of this battery was completed with the exception of the platforms; and the earth embankment essentially completed with the exception of the final regulation and sodding of the slopes. March 14, 1893, $10,000 was allotted from the appropriation of February 18, 1893, for the construction of platforms for four of the mortars, which will be shortly undertaken.
Two mining casemates have been completed, and on May 29, 1893, an allotment was made for the construction of a third. The necessary repairs of buildings for laborers and materials have been commenced.
Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island.-Officer in charge, Capt. W. II. Bixby, Corps of Engineers, with Second Lieut. W. W. Harts, Corps of Engineers, under his immediate orders; Division Engineer, Col. H. L. Abbot, Corps of Engineers.
The approved project for the defense of this bay contemplates an armament of ten 12-inch guns on lifts, six 10-inch and four 8-inch guns on disappearing carriages, eighty 12-inch mortars, and submarine mines to be operated from two mining casemates.
Funds were allotted September 21 and October 26, 1892, for the construction of the two mining casemates. Since those dates, arrangements have been completed for housing and subsisting the working force for one of these casemates and a large proportion of the necessary excavation has been done. All the cement, about one-quarter of the sand, and some of the lumber required for these works, liave been received.
New York Harbor, New York.-Officers of the Corps of Engineers in charge: Col. D. C. Houston, until May 18, 1893; Lieut. Col. H. M. Robert, since June 12, 1893; Lieut. Col. G. L. Gillespie, with First Lieut. J. G. Warren under his immediate orders, and Lieut. Col. W. R. King. First Lieut. T. H. Rees has been under the immediate orders of Col. Houston and Lieut. Col. Robert since April 5, 1893, except from May 18 to June 12, during which period he was temporarily in charge of works.
The projects for the defense of both the southern and eastern entrances to this harbor contemplate, for the present, an armament of twenty-one 12-inch guns on lifts, fifteen 10-inch and nine 8-inch guns on disappearing carriages, one hundred and seventy-six 12-inch mor tars, and submarine mines operated from five mining casemates.
At the beginning of the fiscal year there were under construction emplacements for two 12-inch, two 10-inch, and four 8-inch guns and thirty-two mortars. August 2, 1892, the construction of an additional emplacement for an 8-inch gun was authorized; and November 8, 1892, that of an emplacement for a 10-inch gun, together with two magazines and two casemates for rapid-fire guns.
The five mining casemates and one building for the storage of submarine mining materials are completed and a second storage building under construction.
Lieut. Col. Robert reports as to four emplacements for 8-inch guns: The concrete work is completed except the platforms and the vacant space left in front of each emplacement, to be filled after the platforms are built; the earth parapet of these positions is completed except a small amount of grading and sodding; the terreplein is roughly graded; the ditch in the rear of the battery is excavated and paved, and the rear earth slope is graded.
This officer also reports as to the storage building that the concrete foundation and about half of the lower of the two stories are built.
Relative to the construction of the gun battery for two 12-inch guns, of one emplacement for a 10-inch gun, one mortar battery, and one storage building, Lieut. Col. Gillespie reports: The construction of the masonry of the battery was practically completed at the close of the fiscal year. The completed battery contains 42,410 cubic yards of masonry as follows: 39,013 of concrete, 1,525 of large stone bedded in concrete, 538 of cut granite, 308 of flagging, and 1,027 of finished pavement of superior and exterior slopes and of the floors of the magazines and galleries. The average cost per cubic yard was not quite $1.71, all contingencies included.
The embankment of sand, which, resting against the exterior wall, surrounds the battery excepting at the defensible entrance, was also completed during the year, 5,185 cubic yards of sand having been de posited therein, at a cost of not quite 224 cents per yard.
One 12-inch gun is now mounted in this battery and the manufacture and erection of the mechanism of the second lift is in progress.
Toward the emplacement for one 10-inch gun and adjacent magazines and casemates for rapid-fire guns about 2,700 cubic yards of material has been excavated for the foundations and deposited in the exterior slope, a suitable wharf and concrete plant nearly completed, and all preparations made to commence the construction of concrete masonry at an early date. The allotment of $82,000 for this work was made November 8, 1892, from the appropriation of July 23, 1892.
At the close of the fiscal year the concrete masonry of the mortar battery was completed, excepting about 160 feet of the counter-scarp wall, the sloping concrete surface (for protecting the slopes from damage by blast) in one pit and entrance, and the top finish of the floors in the magazines and passages. In all 26,852 cubic yards of concrete had been put in place at an average cost, including superintendence, purchase and maintenance of plant, and all contingencies, of $5.20 per yard.
During the year 118,478 cubic yards of sand was excavated, hauled, and deposited in the embankments; the total to June 30, 1893, is 127,927 cubic yards, and the filling inside the line of the ditch is completed, excepting about 5,000 yards. The average cost, including all contin gencies, was 28 cents per cubic yard.
Proper arrangements have been made for drainage and a bombproof room has been provided for the engine and dynamo of an electric-light plant for the illumination of the interior of the work.
During the year an allotment of $20,000 was made for the construction of eight of the sixteen mortar platforms required for the completion of the work. Four spring-return mortar carriages are now in readiness for mounting as soon as the platforms are completed.
The storage building is completed, excepting the erection of an overhead trolley for handling the heavier parts of the system, and will furnish adequate storage for all mining material required for the submarine defenses to be operated from its vicinity.