Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The cannons of Hamlin Park

If you've ever been to Hamlin Park you've probably noticed that there are two rather large cannons right by the playground. They have informational plaques on them which indicate that they were used in the Battle of Manila Bay (in the Phillipines) during the Spanish-American War on May 1st, 1898. But there's no indication of why they're here in Shoreline WA. And how did they end up at Hamlin Park? Does anyone know?

Why are these two cannons in Hamlin Park?

Link to: Battle of Manila Bay at Wikipedia

Link to: USS Boston at Wikipedia


  1. The Navy had a hospital and officer housing in the area from the '20s through WWII; perhaps that's a link to help dig out more details. The years since saw it parceled out to be used as a hospital/sanitarium in part and other parts of the land transfered to the city and school district (where Shorecrest, Kellogg, Fircrest, and other district uses are now). Shoreline acquisitioned the last part of South Woods recently.

    Links of interest:
    History of the South Woods,
    Shoreline's South Woods and Hamlin Park pages

  2. I saw that and was interested in the gearing at the breech. It looks like continually turning one shaft rotates the breech to disengage, then pulles it out, and finally rotates it to the side. Turning it the other gets it ready to shoot. Gregg Weber

  3. The Boston was reportedly converted to a collier by Seattle Construction & Dry Dock in 1918. The guns were probibly removed then. The next mention of them I can find is september 2, 1942 when they were reported at the "new Naval Hospital". The next report was:
    Seattle Times March 23, 1952 describing the Firland Sanitarium: “Name anything you can think of in a small town-and you will find its counterpart at Firland. Cannon on the courthouse lawn? Sure! The Navy left two eight-inch gun barrels used on the cruiser Boston in the battle of Manila Bay, in 1898.”

    Where were the guns between 1918 and 1942?

  4. "Where were the guns between 1918 and 1942?"

    Probably in a warehouse...