The walls at Fort Snelling made the best defensive use of the shape of the 100-foot bluff above the rivers. At each corner of the diamond-shaped fort was a different shaped tower, each designed to deliver artillery or musket fire along the walls.
Also known as the Pentagonal Tower, this defensive bastion protected the wall facing the prairie to the west and the Mississippi River to the east. Colonel Snelling and Lieutenant Robert McCabe, who supervised construction, intended the battery to be made of wood. But like the other three corner towers, it was built using limestone. Over 10,000 cubic yards of Platville limestone were quarried from the edge of the bluff to build Fort Snelling. The last use of the North Battery was as a water closet or latrine for the nearby barracks. The battery’s limestone blocks, as well as those of several other structures demolished in 1878-79, were used in construction of new buildings constructed as the post expanded.
The reconstructed North Battery now houses two, 12-pounder iron cannons on garrison or truck-style carriages.