Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Hilo Coastal Defense
A key goal in the Pacific was to hold Oʻahu Island as a main outlying naval base and to protect shipping in the waters around the Hawaiian Islands. The War Department looked to much larger reinforcement of Hawaiʻi; this led to plans for garrisoning the other islands of the Hawaiian group. And, Hilo was a natural choice.
In 1908, construction began on the Hilo Bay breakwater along the shallow reef; piers were built and extended by 1927. A mobile field battery of 155-mm guns was set up in December 1941. Four 4-inch naval guns were later emplaced in 1942. The Hilo battery was abandoned in 1945. The exact locations are undetermined.
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