Southern California II

Camp Andrade | Camp Anza (2) | Camp Arcadia | Balboa Park Barracks | Fort at Ballast Point
Camp Beacom | Bolsa Chica Res. | Camp Cactus | Camp Calexico | Camp Callan
Camp Campo | Camp Carlsbad | Coronado Beach Res. | Coronado Heights Res.
Costa Mesa Battery | Camp El Centro | Camp Elliott | Fort Emory | Camp Escondido
Camp Gibson | Camp Haan | Camp Hearn | Camp Holcomb | Camp Holtville
Camp Howard (2) | Camp Inglewood | Camp Irvine | Camp Irwin | Fort Irwin
Camp Kearny (2) | Camp La Mesa | Camp Lah-We-Lah-His | Camp Lockett
Long Beach Camp | Long Point Res. | Fort MacArthur | Camp McCormick
Mojave AAA Gun Range | Camp Morena | Camp Ojai | Camp Otay
Outer Santa Barbara Channel Radar Stations | Camp Palm City | Fort Pio Pico
Point Dume Radar Station | Camp Pratt | Fort Rosecrans | Camp Ross | Camp San Diego
San Diego Radar Stations | Camp San Fernando | San Pedro Channel Radar Stations
Santa Barbara Channel Defenses | Santa Barbara Channel Radar Stations
Santa Monica Bay Defenses | Camp San Ysidro | Camp Seaside | Camp Seeley
Camp Taliaferro | Tecate Post | Camp Thomas | Camp Vista | Camp Weber | White Point Res.
Wilmington Camp | WWII AA Defenses of Los Angeles | WWII AA Defenses of San Diego

Los Angeles Cold War AAA Defenses
(NOT INDEXED)

Northern California - page 1 | Central California - page 2
San Francisco Bay Area - page 3 | Sonoma-Marin Headlands - page 4
Southern California I - page 5

CALIFORNIA STATE MILITARY MUSEUM

Last Update: 30/OCTOBER/2019
Compiled by Pete Payette - 2019 American Forts Network

NOTE: This page covers only the 20th-century (post-1898) military posts of Southern California. See Page 5 for all 18th and 19th-century (pre-1898) military posts.


TEMPORARY HARBOR DEFENSES, VENTURA GROUP

Santa Barbara Channel Defenses
(1942 - 1944), various locations
All of the following sites have been destroyed and/or developed.
Two-gun 155mm batteries with Panama mounts were located at:
Port Hueneme (Surfside Condos),
Oxnard (at Oxnard Shores),
Ventura (Emma Wood State Beach) mounts in surf,
Santa Barbara (near Coast Guard Station).
Two 40mm AMTB guns were located at the Port Hueneme harbor entrance.
75mm field guns were emplaced at Dulah, Punta Gorda, Coal Oil Point, Naples, and El Capitan (State Beach).

The Port Hueneme 155mm gun battery became a sub-unit of the Los Angeles Harbor Defenses in 1944. The other locations were discontinued in 1944. There were ten searchlight positions for this defense group.

Camp Seaside (1930 - 1945), located at the Ventura County Fairgrounds in Ventura, was the headquarters camp of the Ventura Group Harbor Defenses.

Early Warning Air Defense Radar Sites
(1942 - 1945),
Point Arguello aka Station B-30 (SCR-270). Site now within Vandenberg Air Force Base (no public access).
Point Conception aka Station J-31. Shut down in 1944.
Goleta aka Station X-33 (SCR-271).
Hueneme Point aka Station L-35.
Santa Rosa Island aka Station J-38 (SCR-271) at South Point (Channel Islands National Park).


Camp Ojai
(1942 - 1944/1946), Ojai
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol field headquarters, initially garrisoned by the 2nd Battalion, 134th Infantry Regiment, located at the Ojai Valley Club at Ojai Ave. and Country Club Drive. The camp was locally named by its troops (Nebraska National Guard) as Camp Lah-We-Lah-His, the unit's motto in the Pawnee language. The 1st and 3rd Battalions, 134th IR took up various positions along the coast from Gaviota to Malibu. By 1943 the camp was garrisoned by the 1st Battalion, 174th Infantry Regiment, and the 170th Field Artillery Battalion (105mm howitzers). The Navy took over the site in 1944 and renamed it Camp Oak (2). Site now the Ojai Valley Inn and Country Club.


HARBOR DEFENSES of LOS ANGELES
Los Angeles Harbor Defenses from CA State Military Museum
Harbor Defense of Los Angeles - FORT WIKI

Santa Monica Bay Defenses
(1942 - 1945), various locations
All of the following sites have been destroyed and/or developed.
Battery Eubanks (1942 - 1945 railway battery), located at Manhattan Beach Military Reservation in Manhattan Beach.

Two-gun 155mm batteries with Panama mounts were located at:
El Segundo (1942 - 1943), later re-armed with two 6-inch naval guns on concrete mounts (1943 - 1945). One magazine was uncovered in 2000.
Pacific Palisades (1942 - 1943)
Rocky Point (Palos Verdes Point) (three Panama mounts built)

Two-gun 155mm batteries were field emplaced (no Panama mounts) at:
Playa del Rey (1942) guns transferred to El Segundo in 1942.
Redondo Beach (1942 - 1943)

Fire-control stations in this area were once located at Bluff Cove at Palos Verdes Estates, Hermosa Beach, and Playa del Rey.

An early warning air defense radar site (SCR-270) was located at Point Dume (Station B-36) west of Malibu (shut down in 1944).

Fort MacArthur
(Angels Gate Park)
(1888/1914 - 1975/present), San Pedro
Divided into the Lower (Bottomside and Middleside) and Upper (Topside) Reservations. Batteries on or near the Upper Reservation are the combined Batteries Osgood and Farley (1917 - 1944), Batteries Leary and Merriam (1917 - 1944), both of which were converted into harbor entrance control posts (HECP) in 1944, combined mortar Batteries Barlow and Saxton (1917 - 1944), Battery 241 (1948 - 1956) now under the Korean Bell Pavilion, Anti Motor Torpedo Boat Battery Gaffey Bulge (1943 - 1946), and Battery Hogsdon (1928 - 1945) a two-gun 155mm field battery that was emplaced on Panama mounts in 1942. There were three two-gun 3-inch AA batteries from 1920 - 1945 near the Korean Bell Pavilion. A fourth AA position was built in 1942. Several fire-control stations still exist throughout the post. Two still remain at Point Fermin near the Point Fermin Lighthouse (1874). A NIKE missile control site (LA-43 C) was located on Topside from 1954 - 1974, near Battery Merriam (missile launchers at White Point). A 90mm AA battery may have been located here in 1953 - 1956. The Angles Gate Cultural Center is now located here, among other organizations and institutions.

Located at or near the Lower Reservation were Battery Erwin (1926 - 1946 railway battery) partially destroyed, JAAN Battery 1 (1942 - 1946) at Cabrillo Beach, and Anti Motor Torpedo Boat (AMTB) Battery Navy Field (1943 - 1946) probably buried. Camp Gibson (1917 - 1919) was a WWI training camp. The NIKE missile regional headquarters for the Los Angeles air defense was located here at Middleside (LA-45 DC). The Air Force still uses most the Lower Reservation (Middleside) as housing for personnel of the Air Force Space Division based at El Segundo. No public access. Other parts (Bottomside) were destroyed in the 1980's for the Cabrillo Marina. See also CA State Military Museum entry for Fort MacArthur

White Point Military Reservation
(White Point Park)
(White Point Nature Preserve)
(1942 - 1948/1975), San Pedro
On White Point was Battery Bunker / 127 (1944 - 1948). A four-gun 90mm AA battery was here in 1956. A NIKE missile launch site (LA-43 L) was here 1956 - 1974. The 102-acre White Point parcel owned by the City of Los Angeles was preserved as natural open space in December 1999. In May 2000, the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks and the 15th Council District formally dedicated the space as a nature preserve and in 2003, this scenic landscape was opened to the public for all to enjoy. The Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy currently has a 25-year management agreement with the City of Los Angeles to restore the coastal sage scrub, cactus scrub, and grasslands habitat. The White Point Nature Center opened in May 2010.

Long Point Military Reservation
(Point Vicente Park)
(1930 - 1960's), Rancho Palos Verdes
Battery Barnes / 240 (1944 - 1950's) is located on Point Vicente. This area is now used by the Coast Guard (Point Vicente Lighthouse (1926)). A two-gun 155mm battery (1942) with Panama mounts was located on Long Point (unofficially named Battery Tucker). It has been destroyed. Two 1942 fire-control stations have been destroyed. Six older 1930's fire-control stations still exist in good condition. The reservation became a NIKE missile launch site (LA-55) from 1954 - 1974. The Rancho Palos Verdes City Hall is located in the former NIKE support buildings. The Point Vicente Interpretive Center was built in 1984, expanded in 2006.

Of interest nearby is Portugese Bend Whaling Station historic site.

Bolsa Chica Military Reservation
(Bolsa Chica Marine Reserve)
(1942 - 1948), Sunset Beach
Originally the location of a gun club. The clubhouse became the Army barracks. Batteries here were Battery 128 (1944) destroyed 1995, Battery Harrison / 242 (1944 - 1948) guns transferred to Battery 241, destroyed 1995, and a two-gun 155mm battery (1942) Panama mounts still remain. Battery 128's plotting room casemate and reserve magazine still exists, now on private property.

Costa Mesa Battery
(1942 - 1943), Costa Mesa
A two-gun 155mm battery on three Panama mounts (1942 - 1943), garrisoned by Battery D, and one platoon Battery F, 56th Coast Artillery Regiment that was temporarily assigned to the Harbor Defenses of Los Angeles. Site has since been destroyed and is now an active oil field.

ALSO: On Terminal Island was AMTB Battery Terminal Island (1943 - 1946), which is destroyed. Bluff Park in Long Beach is the site of JAAN Battery 2 (1942 - 1946) and AMTB Battery Bluff Park (1943 - 1946) covered. Battery Lodor (1919 - 1927) was located at Reservation Point on Deadman's Island, which was destroyed in the 1930's. The four guns from Battery Lodor were transferred to JAAN Batteries #1 and #2 in 1942. Ten 37mm AA guns were once located on the Harbor Breakwater, known as Battery Dolphins (Angel's Gate Lighthouse (1913)).

A one-time live-fire practice range for the 14-inch railway guns at Fort MacArthur in the 1930's was once located at Don (San Onofre State Beach), near Camp Pendleton; and another was also at Naples, north of Santa Barbara.

Additional fire-control stations for the Los Angeles Harbor Defenses were once located at Landing Hill at Seal Beach (one mile inland); the Hilton Hotel cupola in Long Beach (still remains); at Sea Bench (six 1930's stations, one 1942 station), Huntington Beach, Newport Harbor, and at Abalone Point (Crystal Cove) (destroyed 1950). There was a Naval observation post on Santa Barbara Island (Channel Islands National Park). There were 25 searchlight emplacements from Laguna Beach to Santa Monica.

Early warning air defense radar sites (SCR-270 or SCR-271) for the San Pedro Channel were located at Laguna Beach (Station X-40) (shut down in 1944); and Santa Ana (Station L-39).

Early warning air defense radar sites (SCR-270 or SCR-271) for the Outer Santa Barbara Channel were located at Santa Catalina Island (Station J-41) at Camp Cactus (1942 - 1945) on Cactus Peak (el. 1560 feet); San Nicolas Island (Station J-42) (U.S. Naval Reservation) (no public access); and San Clemente Island (Station B-3) (U.S. Naval Reservation) (no public access). See also World War II on Catalina Island Virtual Tour from eCatalina.com


Camp Pratt
(1898), Los Angeles
A Spanish-American War muster-out camp for state troops. Located at the horse track at Agricultural Park (present-day Exposition Park).

Camp Arcadia
(1918 - 1919), Arcadia
An Army Balloon School located at the Baldwin Racetrack. Became Ross Army Air Field in 1919 shortly before it was closed.

Camp San Fernando
(1942 - 1944), San Fernando
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol base camp, garrisoned from April 1942 to October 1944 by HQ and HQ Company, 174th Infantry Regiment, located at what was then San Fernando City Park, bounded by Parks Ave., Pacoima Wash (Arroyo Ave.), First Street, and Fourth Street.

Camp McCormick
(1942 - 1945), Pasadena
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol headquarters post, garrisoned by HQ 35th Infantry Division, and HQ Coast Sub-Sector, Southern California Sector, Western Defense Command, located at the Hotel Huntington (built 1906) at 5 Oak Knoll Ave..

Camp Inglewood
(1942 - 1944), Inglewood
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol base camp, garrisoned by the 2nd Battalion, 174th Infantry Regiment, located at Centinela Park (now Edward Vincent, Jr. Park) at 700 East Warren Lane. The Veterans Memorial Building was built in 1934, and was probably used as headquarters.

Wilmington Camp
(1942 - 1944), Wilmington
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol base camp, garrisoned by the 3rd Battalion, 174th Infantry Regiment. Also assigned to the area was Battery C, 307th Coast Artillery Barrage Balloon Battalion.

Camp Ross
(1942 - 1945), San Pedro
An Army Quartermaster Battalion cantonment area for the Los Angeles Port of Embarkation.

Long Beach Camp
(1942 - 1944), Long Beach
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol outpost camp, garrisoned by one platoon Troop B, 115th Cavalry Regiment (Mechanized).

Camp Anza (2)
(1942 - 1946), Riverside
Troop staging area for the Los Angeles Port of Embarkation. Became a POW camp in 1945. The former camp is roughly bounded by the Santa Ana River to the north, Van Buren Blvd. to the east, Crest Avenue to the west, and the southern boundary was approximately one-half mile north of California Ave.. The camp buildings were constructed in a concentrated area that was bounded by Arlington Ave. to the north, Van Buren Blvd. to the east, Crest Ave. to the west, and what was then 7th Street (now Philbin Ave.) to the south. This area is now the Anza Village residential neighborhood.

Camp Irvine
(1942 - 1943), Irvine
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol Infantry battalion base camp located at Irvine Regional Park at 1 Irvine Park Road. Garrisoned by the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Battalions, 140th Infantry Regiment, on a rotating basis. The present park office building was once used as the camp PX. An 1853 model howitzer from Drum Barracks in Wilmington has been on display here since 1925.

WWII AA Defenses of Los Angeles
(1942 - 1944), Los Angeles area
Anti-aircraft defenses for the City and Port of Los Angeles, and environs, were handled by the following units under the direct command of the 4th Anti-Aircraft Command, Western Defense Command (exact locations undetermined):
HQ 2nd Barrage Balloon Group, at Los Angeles.
HQ and HQ Battery, 37th Coast Artillery Brigade (AA), at 2619 Terminal Annex, Los Angeles.
3rd Battalion, 78th Coast Artillery Regiment (AA), at Los Angeles.
205th Coast Artillery Regiment (AA), at Sawtelle (West Los Angeles).
310th Coast Artillery Barrage Balloon Battalion, at Los Angeles.
311th Coast Artillery Barrage Balloon Battalion, at Los Angeles.
352nd AAA Searchlight Battalion (less Battery C), at Los Angeles.
121st Coast Artillery Battalion (AA) (Gun), at Venice.
245th AAA Searchlight Battalion, at Tarzana.
603rd Coast Artillery Regiment (AA) (less Band and 3rd Battalion), at Burbank.
306th Coast Artillery Barrage Balloon Battalion, at Hawthorne.
3rd Battalion, 603rd Coast Artillery Regiment (AA), at Lawndale.
122nd Coast Artillery Battalion (Separate) (AA) (Gun), at Downey.
Battery C, 307th Coast Artillery Barrage Balloon Battalion, at Wilmington (see also above).
732nd Coast Artillery Battery (AA) (Gun), at Fort MacArthur.


Cold War AAA Defenses of Los Angeles
(1953 - 1957), Los Angeles area
Several permanent sites were established for the Army's Anti-Aircraft Artillery (AAA) Gun Site Program, the precursor to the NIKE missile defense program. Four 90mm AA guns were positioned at each site, with troop barracks and other support buildings. Known sites include:
Van Nuys (1953 - 1954): battery headquarters only (?), at Birmingham Army Hospital, 6631 Balboa Ave. (now Birmingham High School and West Valley Special Ed. Center) (LA-96).
Manhattan Beach (1953 - 1957 ?): undetermined.
Fort MacArthur (1953 - 1957 ?): battery headquarters only (?), on post (LA-43).
White Point Reservation (1956): on post (LA-43).
Long Beach (1956): undetermined (LA-40).
Stanton (1953 - 1954): undetermined (LA-32).

NIKE missile defense sites (1954 - 1974) are beyond the scope of this website.

See also NIKE Sites of the Los Angeles Defense Area from Fort MacArthur Museum Association


Camp Haan
(1941 - 1946), near Riverside
An Anti-Aircraft Artillery Training and Replacement Center located adjacent to March Army Air Field (March USAF Base). The main site of the live-fire training was at Mojave Gun Range (now Fort Irwin). Air defense for the base was handled separately by the 507th Coast Artillery Regiment (AA) under the direct command of the Western Defense Command. Post later became a POW camp and disciplinary barracks. Site is now a VA Cemetery, golf course and housing for March Air Base. Some concrete foundations still remain.

Fort Irwin (U.S. Military Reservation)
(1940 - present), near Barstow
Established in 1940 as the Mojave Anti-Aircraft Gun Range (MAAR) for anti-aircraft gun training. Renamed Camp Irwin in 1942. Renamed in 1961 as a permanent post. Various field artillery, engineer, and armored units trained here for the Pacific, Korea, and Vietnam theaters. Operated by the CA National Guard from 1972 to 1980. Became a Regular Army post again with the activation of the National Training Center in 1981, for use by Regular Army, Army Reserve, and National Guard training. On post in Building #222 on C Avenue is the NTC - 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment Museum.

(NOTE: "Mojave" is generally spelled with a "j" west of the Colorado River, and spelled with an "h" east of the Colorado River. Both are pronounced the same.)

Camp Vista
(1942 - 1944), near Vista
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol Infantry battalion base camp located at a former C.C.C. camp (built 1935) at what is now known as Green Oaks Ranch. Garrisoned by the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Battalions, 140th Infantry Regiment, on a rotating basis, from April 1942 to February 1944. Patrol outposts covered the area between Rancho Santa Fe and San Clemente.

Camp Carlsbad
(1942 - 1944), Carlsbad
A one-acre Army Ground Forces bivouac area. Undetermined location and troop unit assignment.

Camp Escondido
(1941 - 1944), Escondido
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol base camp, garrisoned by HQ and HQ Battery, and Battery A, 222nd Field Artillery Regiment (155mm Howitzers) from December 1941 to May 1942. In June 1942 replaced by 130th Field Artillery Battalion (105mm Howitzers). Troops were initially billeted at Grape Day Park, Lincoln School, the Lemon House, Trinity Guild Hall, and Eagles Hall. Barracks and a parade ground were later built between 5th and 11th Avenues to the north and south, and between Tulip and Pine Streets to the west and east.


HARBOR DEFENSES of SAN DIEGO
San Diego Harbor Defenses from CA State Military Museum
Cabrillo - The Guns of San Diego Historic Resource Study from NPS
Early Point Loma Photos from SSC Pacific (US Navy)
Harbor Defense of San Diego - FORT WIKI

Fort Rosecrans
(Point Loma Naval Base) (Cabrillo National Monument)
(1873 - 1949/present), San Diego
Originally located here was Spanish Fort Guijarros (see page 5).
Fort Rosecrans was named as such in 1899, but the original military post was established in 1852 as Camp Point Loma, later known as Post at San Diego (see page 5). An earthwork battery, called Fort at Ballast Point, was constructed in 1873 on Ballast Point. It was never completed. Cabrillo National Monument was set aside and formally established in 1913. State marker

The post was divided into five sections in WWII for tactical purposes; North, West, East, Cabrillo, and Loma. The Army declared the post surplus in 1949. It became a U.S. Navy submarine support base in 1959 and headquarters of the Third Fleet. The various Navy shore commands were consolidated in 1998 as Naval Base Point Loma. Public access is currently restricted in most areas. See also Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery (state marker).
Point Loma Military History and Coastal Defense from NPS

NORTH included Battery 237 (unofficially Woodward) (1943 - 1946), Battery Strong (1941 - 1946) partially covered, Battery Zeilin (1937 - 1943) buried (one emplacement still remained until 1980's), Battery Whistler (formerly Naval Reservation Battery) (1916 - 1942) modified into Naval Arctic Research Lab, Battery North (1930's - 1937, four 155mm guns that were later relocated to Battery Imperial at Fort Emory in 1941), Battery Gillespie (1937 - 1943) at site of Battery North on modified Panama mounts (one emplacement destroyed, one buried, and another partially uncovered), and two FC stations (still remain). Three WWII FC stations (aka "Sunset") are located outside the post, just north of the main gate, at Stafford Place, and have been incorporated into private homes. Batteries Zeilin and Gillespie were originally built for the Marines, transferred to the Army in late December 1941.
WEST included Battery Ashburn / 126 (1943 - 1948) modified, two 1920's FC stations, the HDCP/HECP complex with a tunnel connecting to a FC station on Cemetery Bluff, and another FC station near the HDCP (still remains).
EAST included Battery McGrath (1899 - 1917, 1919 - 1943), Battery Fetterman (1900 - 1917) destroyed in 1940, the combined Battery Wilkeson and Battery Calef (1898 - 1942) on Ballast Point (originally all four guns were Battery Wilkeson, two guns seperated as Calef in 1915, recombined in 1930's), Battery White (formerly Powerhouse Canyon Battery) (1915 - 1942), a WWII FC station at site of old Battery Fetterman (gone), the HECP radio transmitter station (now converted to modern use), the plotting room casemate for Battery Ashburn, a mine casemate at Powerhouse Canyon entrance (destroyed 1989), and AMTB Battery Pio Pico (1942), which was relocated as AMTB New Battery Fetterman (1943 - 1946, proposed named Bovee) destroyed.
CABRILLO included a FC station (destroyed for Cabrillo National Monument Visitor Center), three FC stations at Whale Lookout (still remain), three searchlight emplacements (still exist), a FC station near the lighthouse (still exists), four FC stations on the trail (still remain), a Command Post (the original HECP) now mostly buried near the lighthouse, and an SCR-682 radar on top of the command post (now gone). A 37mm AA battery (Channel Battery) was once located by the water along the trail. Point Loma Lighthouse state marker.
LOMA included AMTB Battery Cabrillo (1943 - 1946, proposed name Brady) destroyed, Battery Humphreys / 238 (1943 - 1946) modified, Battery Point Loma (1941) four 155mm guns (one Panama mount uncovered, bunkroom and ammo shelter still remain), and a FC station (still remains).

Fort Pio Pico
(North Island Naval Air Station)
(1906 - 1919, 1935 - present), Coronado
Located here was Battery Meed (1902 - 1914). It was damaged in a storm in 1914, and the guns were later transferred to Battery McGrath at Fort Rosecrans in 1919. The fort was demolished in 1922. The North Island Naval Air Station was built nearby in 1917.

Four WWII fire-control stations were once located near Spanish Bight, no remains. That site is now part of the Navy base golf course.

The U.S. Marines established Camp Thomas on North Island in 1911 during tensions with Mexico. They returned to North Island in 1914 during additional tensions with Mexico and established Camp Howard (2). The Marines relocated to Balboa Park Barracks later that year.

Coronado Beach Military Reservation
(Silver Strand State Beach)
(1897 - 1946 ?), Coronado
The planned location of an Endicott-era mortar battery that was never built. AMTB Battery Cortez (1943 - 1946, proposed name Breitung) was located here. It has been destroyed. Two WWII fire-control towers were once located here.

The Navy/Marine Corps Coronado/Silver Strand Beach Firing Range was the live-fire filming location of the gun batteries in the 1942 film "Wake Island".

Fort Emory
(Silver Strand Training Complex - U.S. Navy)
(1941 - 1948/present), Imperial Beach
Originally named Coronado Heights Military Reservation until 1942. Located here is Battery Grant / 239 (1943 - 1946), Battery Imperial (1941 - 1943) four Panama mounts covered, and Battery 134 (unofficially Gatchell) (1944 never completed, demolished 2016). An SCR-296A radar was once located on top of Battery 239's BC station. Declared surplus by the Army in 1948, and later became the Naval Radio Receiving Facility. Now the Silver Strand Training Complex for naval special forces, a subpost of Coronado Naval Base.

Camp Callan
(Torrey Pines State Beach)
(1940 - 1945), Torrey Pines
A Coast Artillery training center for 155mm guns, and later for 90mm, 40mm, 75mm, and 3-inch AA guns. An unnamed two-gun 155mm battery located here was attached to the HD San Diego defenses. Some building foundations remain. Site is now partly UC-San Diego property. See also Military Yearbook Project by Richard Morgan

ALSO: Additional WWII fire-control stations were once located near La Jolla (Hermosa), west of La Jolla Country Club; Mount Soledad (destroyed in 1970's, near current FAA radio tower); Santa Fe, near Solana Beach County Park, off Marview Ave. (still exists); and at Border Field (State Park) (three stations still exist along a trail). An AAA training site ("Monument") was once located on the beach at the border with Mexico.

Early warning air defense radar sites (SCR-270 or SCR-271) were located at Oceanside (Station L-1); Mount Soledad (Station B-5) at La Jolla (el. 822 feet) (no remains); and Border Field (Station L-6) (foundation ruins). (NOTE: See also MEXICO page for additional radar stations located in northern Baja California.)

Thanks to Al Grobmeier, of the Coast Defense Study Group, for additional information on the San Diego harbor defenses.


Camp Kearny (2)
(Miramar Marine Corps Air Station)
(1917 - 1919, 1932 - 1961/present), San Diego
A Federalized National Guard cantonment and training camp for the 40th Division, later becoming a demobilization center. Closed and salvaged in 1919. The U.S. Navy later took possession and developed Miramar Naval Air Station on the site.

During the 1930's, the Navy briefly used the former base for helium dirigibles. In 1932 a mooring mast and hangar were built at the camp. The base was expanded in 1941 with new runways. The Navy commissioned Naval Auxiliary Air Station (NAAS) Camp Kearny in February 1943 on the western portion of the reservation. In 1934 Camp Holcomb (later renamed Camp Elliott in 1940) was built on the eastern portion of old Camp Kearny (2), to be used for Marine artillery and machine gun training. In 1942 Camp Elliott became home to Fleet Marine Force Training Center, West Coast and the 2nd Marine Division, charged with defending the California coast. It was replaced by Camp Pendleton in 1942. The camp area remained under Navy control until 1961 when it was transferred to the city. Marine Corps Air Depot Camp Kearny was also established in 1942, renamed MCAD Miramar in 1943 to distinguish it from the adjacent Naval Air Station. The NAAS closed in 1946. The Marine Air Station relocated to El Toro MCAS in 1947, but the Navy returned and kept the base open. In 1969 the United States Navy Fighter Weapons School (aka TOP GUN) was established. As a result of BRAC, the Navy's TOP GUN school relocated to Nevada in 1996, and the base became MCAS Miramar in 1997. See also MCAS Miramar from CA State Military Museum

Marine Barracks Balboa Park
(1914 - 1921), San Diego
The first permanent post established for the U.S. Marines in San Diego Bay was established at Balboa Park during the Panama-California International Exposition. A new barracks post was later built at the present location at Dutch Flats in 1921, renamed Marine Corps Advanced Expeditionary Base, San Diego, then in 1924 renamed again to Marine Corps Base, Naval Operating Base, San Diego. This became headquarters of the Fleet Marine Force in 1935. The base was officially renamed Marine Corps Recruit Training Depot in 1948.

Camp San Diego
(1911 - 1917 ?), San Diego
Established by the U.S. Army for border patrol during tensions with Mexico. Exact location undetermined.

Camp Walter R. Taliaferro
(1916 - 1918), San Diego
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol. Located on the former grounds of the Panama-California International Exposition at Balboa Park.

WWII AA Defenses of San Diego
(1942 - 1944), San Diego area
Anti-aircraft defenses for the City and Harbor of San Diego, and environs, were handled by the following Army units under the direct command of the 4th Anti-Aircraft Command, Western Defense Command (exact locations undetermined):
HQ and HQ Battery, 33rd Coast Artillery Brigade (AA)
69th Coast Artillery Regiment (AA) (less 2nd Battalion)
204th Coast Artillery Regiment (AA)
307th Coast Artillery Barrage Balloon Battalion (less Battery C)
Battery C, 352nd AAA Searchlight Battalion

The Navy and Marines most likely had their own separate anti-aircraft defenses at the various naval installations, to supplement the Army defenses.

Camp Lawrence J. Hearn
(1916), Palm City
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol.

Camp Palm City was here during World War I, possibly the same post.

Camp La Mesa
(1942 - 1944), La Mesa
A WWII coastal defense shore patrol headquarters and battalion camp for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Battalions, 140th Infantry Regiment, on a rotating basis. The Anti-Tank Company, 140th IR was here in 1943. Site became a Navy personnel training center after February 1944. Site is now an extensive residential and commercial area.

Camp Otay
(1910's, 1942 - 1944), Otay
Built by the CA National Guard for border patrol before WWI.

During WWII the former camp site was reoccupied as a coastal defense shore patrol outpost camp, a sub-post of Camp La Mesa, and renamed Camp Weber. Occupied by units of the 140th Infantry Regiment until February 1944. Located on the northeast corner of Main Street and Albany Avenue, site now occupied by Otay Elementary School, the Otay Community Center, Otay Park, and a power substation.

Camp San Ysidro
(1912 - 1913), San Ysidro
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol.

Tecate Post
(1911 - 1914), Tecate
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol.

Camp Campo
(1910's), Campo
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol, probably before WWI. Cavalry troops were known to have been posted here in 1918.

Camp Lockett
(1941 - 1946), Campo
A border patrol post initially occupied by the Horse Cavalry. After December 1941 the units at Camp Seeley and Camp Morena were consolidated here. This post was the last home of the Army's Horse Cavalry, hosting the 4th Cavalry Brigade Heradquarters, and the 10th and 28th Cavalry Regiments. By 1943 the camp hosted Headquarters, Campo Sub-Sector, Southern Land Frontier Sector, Western Defense Command. In 1944 the post became a POW camp and convalescent hospital. Of about 400 buildings originally built, over 70 still remain.

Camp Morena
(1940 - 1941, 1989 - present), Lake Morena
A WWII Horse Cavalry mountain training camp, also used in a border patrol function. In December 1941 the units transferred to Camp Lockett for consolidation.

The camp is now used as headquarters for the CA National Guard Engineers and U.S. Border Patrol units maintaining the international border. Since 2008 it is presently administered by the U.S. Navy as a subpost of Coronado Naval Base. See also Camp Morena - U.S. Navy

Camp Seeley
(1940 - 1946), Seeley
A WWII Horse Cavalry desert training camp, also used in a border patrol function. In December 1941 the units transferred to Camp Lockett for consolidation, and the post then became an ordnance proving ground for the Armored Cavalry.

Camp El Centro
(1910's), El Centro
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol before WWI.

Camp Holtville
(1910's), Holtville
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol before WWI.

Camp John H. Beacom
(1911 - 1920), Calexico
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol.

Camp Calexico
(1914 - 1916), Calexico
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol, located one-half mile north of town.

Camp Andrade
(1910's), Andrade
Built by the U.S. Army for border patrol before WWI, located at the head of an old canal crossing the border to Algodones, Baja California, Mexico.


Special thanks to Dan Sebby, for information from the California State Military Museum website.

Northern California - page 1 | Central California - page 2 | San Francisco Bay Area - page 3
Sonoma-Marin Headlands - page 4 | Southern California I - page 5

QUESTIONS ? Please send any corrections and/or additions to this list to:
"Updates" at NorthAmericanForts.com