Category: Fort Totten, New York

Categories: United States Forts, Camps and Bases | Queens County, New York

Located in Queens County, New York

Fort Totten, New York

Fort Totten is a former U.S. Army installation near Bayside in Queens County, New York. It is located on the north shore of Long Island, on a peninsula named Willets Point. Fort Totten is at the head of Little Neck Bay, which is also the place where the East River widens to become Long Island Sound. While the U.S. Army Reserve continues to maintain a presence at the fort, the property is now owned by the City of New York.

Construction began on Fort Totten in 1862 after the land was purchased by the U.S. Government in 1857 from the Willets family. The fort is close to the neighborhoods of Bay Terrace, Bayside, Beechhurst and Whitestone, and it is close to the northeast corner of Queens County, New York. The original purpose was to protect the East River approach to New York Harbor, along with Fort Schuyler, which faces it from Throgs Neck on the opposite side of the river entrance. The fort was named in 1898 after Joseph Gilbert Totten.

In 1954, the fort became a Project Nike air defense site. Although no missiles were located at Fort Totten, it was the regional headquarters for the New York area; administrative offices and personnel housing was located at the fort. Fort Totten was also the headquarters for the 66th Anti-Aircraft Missile Battalion, Battery D, whose missiles were located at nearby Fort Slocum on Hart Island. Headquarters of the 41st AAA Gun Battalion was also stationed here. 90MM cannon Batteries of the 41st were located throughout Long Island. During the mid-1950s the 90 MM guns were replaced with Nike missiles. This use of Fort Totten was discontinued in 1974. (1)

Images: Fort Totten Officers' Club, Abandoned fortification

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Person Profiles (2)

06 Jul 1961 Munchweiler, Germany - 25 May 2003 photo

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