American Forts: West


Fort Armstrong | Fort DeRussy | Camp Gulstan | Halehui | Halekoa | Hawaii Arsenal
Hawaii Ordnance Depot | Defenses of Honolulu | Fort at Honolulu | Fort at Honoruru
'Iolani Barracks | Fort Ka'ahumanu | Camp Ka'alawai | Kakaako Battery
Fort Kamehameha (1) | Fort Kapapu | Fort Kekuanohu | Camp Lili'uokalani | Camp McCarthy
McKinley Barracks | Camp McKinley | Camp Otis | Camp Punchbowl | Fort Punloa
Puowaina Battery | Fort Ruger | Russian Fort | Sandwich Islands Post | Fort Shafter

(Minor WWII Installations NOT INDEXED)


Pearl Harbor Area - page 2 | North Shore O'ahu - page 3 | Other Hawaiian Islands - page 4

Last Update: 12/OCTOBER/2014
Compiled by Pete Payette - ©2014 American Forts Network

O'ahu Island - Southeastern Shore

(1809 - 1813 ?), Honolulu
King Kamehameha I built this fortified palace on the waterfront. Palisaded on the landward side, with a 16-gun battery on the sea-side. Within the compound were the main palace (mua), the Queen's palace (hale aina), a storage house, powder magazine and guardhouse, two stone storehouses, and several small houses or huts for the attendants and soldiers. Site located near Nimitz Highway and Queen Street. Honolulu was then known as Kou.

Russian Fort
(1815), Honolulu
The Russian-American Fur Company built a blockhouse near the harbor, site located at Walker Park near Aloha Tower. A small Russian naval gun recovered from the harbor in the 1960's is on display in the park. The Russians were forced to leave after a few months, and soon set up operations on Kaua'i.

Fort Kekuanohu
(1816 - 1857), Honolulu
Soon after the Russians left, the Hawaiians built a new fort (papu) nearby out of coral blocks faced with adobe clay, also known as Fort at Honolulu (or Honoruru), or Fort Kamehameha (1), Ka'ahumanu, or Kapapu. Barracks, Officers' quarters, the Governor's House, prison cells, a guardhouse and several powder magazines were inside the 340-by-300-foot long, 12-foot high, and 20-foot thick walls. The first courts of the islands were held here until a new courthouse was built in 1853 adjacent to the fort. By 1830 there were 40 guns mounted on the parapets, all of various calibers from assorted foreign ships. In 1838 there were 52 guns reported. Great Britain acquired the fort for five months in 1843. In 1846 there were 63 guns mounted, with 286 men in garrison. In 1849 there were 70 guns reported. The fort was ransacked by the French for 10 days in 1849 over a domestic dispute, although the French flag reportedly never flew over the fort. Later the fort served as a jail and police headquarters before being demolished in 1857. All the guns had been sold off in 1853. The coral blocks were later used to construct a harbor breakwater. Site originally located at the then foot of Fort Street at Queen Street. Fort Street now runs through the site. One original gun still remains in the city, embedded in the sidewalk in front of the Kamehameha V Post Office one block away from the fort site.

Kakaako Battery
(1860's ? - 1893 ?), Honolulu
A saluting battery consisting of several small naval guns. No remains. Site probably located at or near the former location of Fort Armstrong, overlooking Kaakaukukui Reef across the ship channel from Sand Island.

Puowaina Battery
(1819 ? - 1853), Honolulu
A Hawaiian 14-gun stone battery and brick powder magazine located on the ridge of the Punchbowl Crater. Also known as Fort Punloa or Fort Kekuanao'a. In 1825 there were eight 32-pounder guns reported. In 1846 there were 11 guns mounted, with 33 men in garrison. After 1849 it was used only as a saluting battery. All the guns were sold off in 1853. One of the original guns is on display at the U.S. Army Museum of Hawaii at Fort DeRussy.

Sandwich Islands Post
(1834 - 1867), Honolulu
A Hudson's Bay Co. trading post located on Queen Street adjacent to the Honolulu Fort. Not fortified.

'Iolani Barracks
(1871 - 1950), Honolulu
Built in the fashion of a medievel castle with tower battlements and embrasured parapets, originally with an open courtyard (roofed over in 1920). Also spelled ƠIolani. Also known as Halekoa (Soldier House). Accommodated about 85 to 125 soldiers. Used by the Royal Guards, Citizens' Guards (1893 - 1894), Federal troops, and the state National Guard. Originally located across Palace Walk (Hotel Street) from 'Iolani Palace, it was moved to 364 South King Street in 1965 to make way for the new state capitol building. Now serves as the visitor center to 'Iolani Palace.

Camp McCarthy
(1917 - 1918), Honolulu
A state National Guard camp on the grounds of the old state capitol building.

Camp Lili'uokalani
(1917), Honolulu
A state National Guard encampment. Undetermined location, possibly the same as Camp McCarthy.

Hawaii Arsenal
(1915 - unknown), Honolulu
Originally named Hawaii Ordnance Depot until 1917. Located three miles from downtown, near Fort Shafter.

Camp McKinley
(1898 - 1907), Waikiki
The first American military post in Hawaii. Army Engineers were located at Kapiolani Park at the foot of Diamond Head, and New York state militia were located at the adjacent "Irwin Tract" to the east of the racetrack. By the end of 1898 the initial Engineers' tent camp on the racetrack was relocated to new barracks on Kapahulu Road, between Leahi and Kanaina Roads, known as McKinley Barracks, which continued until replaced by Fort Shafter. Camp Otis (1898) was already established by then on the racetrack, used as a temporary layover post for the Philippine Expeditionary forces. "Camp Gulstan" was the name given to the Waikiki Chapel used by the troops. The first post hospital was located at Independence Park on King Street, closed in January 1899. A second post hospital was the Nu'uanu Valley Military Hospital at "Buena Vista" on Nu'uanu Ave. at Wyllie Street, probably used until a new hospital was opened at Fort Shafter in 1907.

Camp Ka'alawai (1898) was a convalescent camp located at Ka'alawai Beach on the east side of the Paul Isenberg estate at Waialae, about three miles east of Camp McKinley.

(includes the eastern shore)

¤ Fort Shafter (U.S. Military Reservation)
(1899 - present), Honolulu
Originally named Kahauiki Military Reservation until 1905. Four 3-inch AA gun batteries were built here in the 1920's. During WWII the post became the headquarters post for all U.S. Army forces in the Pacific region. The post's administration buildings, built in WWII, were known as the "Pineapple Pentagon".

¤ Alewa Heights Military Reservation
(1942 - unknown), Honolulu
Battery School (1942 - 1944) four Panama mounts, was located on the campus of Kamehameha School, east of Fort Shafter.

¤ Sand Island Military Reservation
(Sand Island State Recreation Area)
(1916 - unknown), Honolulu
Known as Camp Sand Island. Two 3-inch AA guns were here in 1917, and two more were added in 1928. Also located here were four Panama mounts of Battery Sand Island (1937 - 1942), converted to Anti Motor Torpedo Boat Battery #4 (1943 - 1946), Battery Harbor (1942 - 1944) four 7-inch naval guns (two guns later moved to Fort DeRussy as display at Battery Randolph), and Naval Antiaircraft Shore Battery No. 9 (1942 - 1944) four 5-inch naval guns. A concrete machine-gun pillbox was constructed here in 1934 (still exists). Several more were added in WWII (ruins). Two searchlights were emplaced here. The 3-inch AA mounts may be buried in the southeast section of the park, the Panama mounts and AMTB mounts are destroyed. The location of the 5-inch AA mounts has not been determined. The 7-inch gun mounts and magazines are incorporated into a playground. The HECP tower still exists. See also Virtual Tour of Sand Island from

¤ Fort Armstrong
(Kakaako Waterfront Park)
(1899 - 1949/1974), Honolulu
Located across the ship channel from Sand Island, originally known as Kaakaukukui Reef Military Reservation until 1909. Located here was Battery Tiernon (1911 - 1943) destroyed. The present seawall was constructed 500 feet out from the original shoreline in 1948, and the area was backfilled, destroying in the process what was left of the old reef. The Army Corps of Engineers took over the post in 1949. Kakaako Park was created over the landfill area.

¤ Punchbowl Military Reservation
(1899 - 1948), Honolulu
Batteries here, under the command of Fort Armstrong, included Battery 304 (1944 never completed) and Battery Punchbowl (1930's - 1943) two Panama mounts until 1943 when two more were added. One mount still exists. Two 3-inch AA gun batteries were built here in 1917. Fire-control station "D" (pre-WWII) was also here, three structures remain. Inside the Punchbowl was Camp Punchbowl, the cantonment area for the batteries. The Punchbowl became the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in 1949. PHOTOS from Dick and Jane Travel

¤ Fort DeRussy (U.S. Military Reservation)
(1904 - 1949/present), Waikiki
Originally known as Kalia Military Reservation until 1909. The U.S. Army Museum of Hawaii is inside Battery Randolph (1913 - 1944). Other batteries were Battery Dudley (1913 - 1946) destroyed in 1969, and Anti Motor Torpedo Boat Battery #5 (1943 - 1946) destroyed. Four 3-inch AA gun batteries were built in 1917. A training firing point was established on the beach in 1921 for 155mm guns. Became the U.S. Armed Forces Recreation Center in 1949. The Hale Koa Hotel (Army MWR resort property) was built in 1975. Two 7-inch guns now on display were originally from Sand Island. Also located on post since 1995 is the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies.

Nearby at Ala Moana Beach Park was AMTB Battery Ala Moana (1943 - 1945) destroyed.

¤ Round Top Military Reservation
(Pu'u 'Ualaka'a State Wayside)
(1928 - 1945), Honolulu
Located on Pu'u 'Ualaka'a (Round Top) was Battery Round Top (1942 - 1945) four Panama mounts. Also here was fire-control station "Round Top" (WWII), now converted into an observation deck.

¤ Fort Ruger (State Military Reservation)
(Diamond Head State Monument)
(1906 - 1959/present), Diamond Head
Originally known as Diamond Head Military Reservation until 1909. Batteries located here are Battery Harlow (1910 - 1943), Battery Birkhimer (1916 - 1943) rebuilt, Battery Granger Adams (1935 - 1946) on Black (Kupikipikio) Point, destroyed, Battery Dodge (1915 - 1925, two 4.7-inch guns, two 4-inch naval guns added 1941 - 1943), Battery Mills (1916 - 1925) on Black Point, destroyed, Battery 407 (1944, never armed), Battery Hulings (1915 - 1925), Battery Ruger (1937 - 1943) four Panama mounts, and an unnamed battery (1915 - 1919, twelve 6-pounder field guns). Four 3-inch AA gun batteries were built in the 1920's, including one battery at Black Point. Four searchlights were emplaced in various positions. The two original 4.7-inch guns of Battery Dodge are now mounted on concrete pedestals in front of the Hawaiian National Guard Armory in Wahiawa. A salvaged three-gun turret from the USS Oklahoma was proposed to be located on Diamond Head in 1944, but was replaced by Battery 407. The Diamond Head Hiking Trail to Point Le'ahi leads to fire-control station "E" (three pre-WWII and one WWII structures, including the Honolulu HD Fire Command Post). Also on Diamond Head was an AA warning station (AAIS 1) (1940). The last parcel of the reservation became a Hawaiian National Guard post in 1959. PHOTOS from Punynari's Island Adventures
See also War Ruins of East Oahu from

Located one-half mile north of Diamond Head on Pu'u Kaimuki was a steel fire-control tower (1918) and a concrete base-end station (1942), as well as a searchlight station and several machine-gun emplacements. Became a city park in 1970, and all strucures (save one machine-gun site) were demolished in the 1980's. North of here fire-control station "Wilhelmina Rise" (WWII) was built at Wilhelmina Rise.

¤ Wiliwilinui Ridge Military Reservation
(1942 - 1951), near Aina Haina
Located above Wailupe Beach State Park, northeast of Diamond Head is Battery Wilridge / Kirkpatrick (1943 - 1948, renamed 1946) two twin 8-inch naval turret guns. It was later salvaged for scrap. The magazines, plotting room, and battery commander's station still exist, located on the grounds of a private estate. There was also the four Panama mounts of Battery Wili (1942 - 1945, destroyed) which were located 3000 feet south of Battery Wilridge. Both sites are on private property. A base-end station (1942) was once located nearby at Wailupe (destroyed). Searchlights were emplaced at Wailupe Point. PHOTOS from Punynari's Island Adventures

¤ Koko Head Military Reservation
(unknown dates), near Hawai'i Kai
Located on Kuamookane Hill was Battery Koko Head (1941 - 1942) four Panama mounts. It was under the command of Fort Ruger, and was later replaced by Battery Wili. At Koko Saddle was to be located Battery 305 (WWII never built). Fire-control station "H'" (three pre-WWII structures, one WWII structure) was located on Koko Head, as well as an SCR-270 mobile radar (1941). An SCR-271A fixed radar (1942) was located on Koko Crater, with the operations and power rooms tunneled into the rim. Searchlights were emplaced at Kawaihoa Point. PHOTOS from Punynari's Island Adventures

¤ Makapuu Head Military Reservation
(unknown dates), Makapu'u Point
Fire-control station "H" (two structures pre-WWII, one structure WWII) was located on Makapu'u Head, now state property. Still exists. A salvaged two-gun turret from the USS Oklahoma was planned to be located here in 1944. Never built. Searchlights were emplaced on the south side of Makapu'u Head, and an AA warning station (AAIS 2) (1940) was located at Makapu'u Point. PHOTOS from Punynari's Island Adventures

¤ Kalihi Military Reservation
(1941 - unknown), Kalihi Pali
Battery Kalihi (1941 - 1944) two 240mm howitzers was located on the Kalihi Pali in the Ko'olau Range southwest of Kaneohe, north of Honolulu (near the Wilson Tunnel on HI 63). With a 360-degree field-of-fire, this battery also served the Kane'ohe Bay Harbor Defenses. Site still exists.

NOTES: The Island of O'ahu was ringed by hundreds of mass-produced concrete machine-gun pillboxes in 1942. Many still exist. There were numerous AA batteries (3-inch, 20mm, 40mm, 90mm, 120mm) emplaced around the island 1942 - 1945. They are not yet listed on this website. Not all of the 155mm and 240mm batteries had guns emplaced at all times. Many were alternate, or "fall back" pre-built positions. The guns were moved where needed.

Thanks to William Gaines of the Coast Defense Study Group for detailed information on Oahu's WWII 155mm batteries, railway batteries, and other historical information, and also to the late William Dorrance of the CDSG for additional historical information.
Special thanks to John Bennett of the CDSG for Oahu fire-control station data, and info on the current conditions of various surviving structures.
Thanks to Neil Dukas for providing info and material on the military sites of the Kingdom of Hawai'i.

Pearl Harbor Area - page 2 | North Shore O'ahu - page 3 | Other Hawaiian Islands - page 4

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