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The History Corner: Kangaroo Bluff Battery

By Reg. A. Watson

 

THE view of the River Derwent is spectacular.

The site of the Kangaroo Bluff Battery is a gem in the municipality.

Open to the public in the daytime, its construction was completed in 1884 in response to two Russian vessels seen in the Derwent River several years before.

This gave way to fears of a possible Russian invasion.

The idea was to blow the enemy vessels out of the water before they could shell Hobart.

The fort was constructed from solid stone and faced with masonry and includes underground passages which housed the magazines, stores, the lamp room and loading galleries to the huge guns erected.

Speaking tubes were set into the walls for communication purposes.

A highlight was the two eight-inch Armstrong guns beside the Nordenfelt rapid fire guns.

The moat that surrounded the battery is still there, without the water.

A long time ago, a 12-year-old boy tragically drowned in it, prompting its draining.

The fort was manned by local militia and of course, was never used in anger.

Come federation in 1901, the site was passed to the Federal Government and it ceased to exist in the 1920s.

It is now managed by the Parks and Wildlife Service as a public park.

It’s a fascinating place where the kids can run, explore and imagine an era gone by – a major period in the Eastern Shore’s history.

Caption: The Kangaroo Bluff Battery.

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About the Author: Eastern Shore Sun

The Eastern Shore Sun is your monthly community newspaper, reaching over 30,000 homes and businesses in the communities of Clarence and Sorell. It is the product of Nicolas Turner, Justine Brazil, Ben Hope, Simon Andrews, Tobias Hinds and guest contributors, with support from advertisers.

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