Part of our in-depth series exploring Southern Early American Forts
Fort Crockett, named after David Crockett, was a United States military reservation on Galveston Island. It was built in 1897 for coast artillery training and harbor defense. Its batteries, which fronted the Gulf of Mexico, held ten-inch guns, mortars, and rapid-fire guns. It was first occupied by Battery G, First Artillery, and relieved by Battery C in 1900. A seawall constructed along the Gulf shore of the military reservation in 1904-05 tied into the gun emplacements. After the Galveston hurricane of 1900, Fort Crockett's batteries were transferred to the United States Army Corps of Engineers. The fort was not garrisoned again until 1911.
Between 1917 and 1926 Battery G, Thirteenth Coast Artillery, organized as the Third Company, manned the fort. The installation eventually became headquarters for the Sixty-ninth Coast Artillery, and Battery G was transferred to the Twentieth Coast Artillery. Both were harbor-defense units. When the Third Attack Group was stationed at Fort Crockett in the mid-1920s, an aerodrome was built nearby. Until 1940 the fixed batteries at Fort Crockett remained on caretaker status. The next year the Twentieth and 265th Coast Artillery units were activated to man the defenses. A number of German prisoners of war were interned at the post from 1941 to 1946. Adjunct operations during World War II included a laundry, a bakery, and a hospital, as well as signal corps, engineer, and ordnance detachments.
From the late 1940s to the mid-1950s Fort Crockett served as a recreational facility for active and reserve military personnel and their families. In 1955 the General Services Administration declared the post surplus and began disposing of its property and buildings. Only one of the batteries, completed in 1942, remained in 1986.
The above information is from The Handbook of Texas Online Web Site.
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