Seattle Defense Area

During the Cold War, the Seattle-Tacoma and Puget Sound area was home to industrial and military locations strategic to the defense of the United States. The geography also put the region within reach of Soviet strategic bombers coming over the North Pole into North America. Military and civilian leadership believed the risk was great enough to surround Seattle with a ring of anti-aircraft defenses manned by Regular Army and Washington National Guard members.

Gun batteries predated the construction of 10 Nike Ajax missile locations between 1956 and 1959. All gun batteries were deactivated by 1960 leaving only the Nike locations. By 1964, three of the locations were converted to Nike Hercules and the remaining locations deactivated.

Nike batteries were located at:
(S-03) Kenmore
(S-13) Redmond *
(S-20) Cougar Mt/Issaquah
(S-32/S-33) Renton/Lake Youngs
(S-43) Kent/Midway
(S-61) Vashon Island *
(S-81) Poulsbo
(S-82) Winslow/Bainbridge Island
(S-92) Kingston *
* locations upgraded from Nike Ajax to Nike Hercules

An acquisition radar section was posted at Fort Worden, Port Townsend, WA. Headquarters facilities were located at McChord AFB, Fort Lawton, Redmond, Phantom Lake, O’Brien, and Kent.