FMHA to host open house Oct. 19 at Battery 519 in Cape state park

October 9, 2013

Fort Miles Historical Association has scheduled an open house at Battery 519 beginning at 10 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 19, in Cape Henlopen State Park.

Docents will explain the plotting room, where visitors can learn how enemy surface ships were targeted for the big guns at Fort Miles. Guides will tell how fire control towers up and down the coast teamed to supply coordinates to plotters who relayed firing instructions to gunners.

Also on display is a German 20mm antiaircraft gun that was recovered from a sunken U-boat off Point Judith, R.I. The World War II weapon was found and restored by FMHA volunteers. Docents will describe how the crew of another U-boat surrendered at Fort Miles at the end of World War II.

Another display shows the mines used to protect the entrance to Delaware Bay.

Other areas on the tour are storage rooms for powder bags and shells used in the 12-inch gun. The 12-inch gun itself is on display. This gun was on the battleship Wyoming but was removed after World War I when the ship was scrapped. Fort Miles acquired the gun from the U.S. Navy.

A ceremony at 3 p.m. will remember the two World War II Medal of Honor winners from Delaware. Pavers engraved with their names will be added to a display of stones commemorating veterans and others that were donated by loved ones.

There is a $5 fee to tour the battery. For information call 302-645-0753 or go to


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