Tuaguba Hill is the highest elevation feature at the eastern edge of Port Moresby. This hill has a commanding view overlooking Port Moresby (Town) and Paga Hill to the west and Fairfax Harbor to the northwest and Ela Beach and Walter Bay to the south. Also spelled "Tua-guba" or "Touaguba". During the Pacific War, known as "Ack Ack Hill". Today, located in National Capital District (NCD) in Papua New Guinea (PNG).
The summit of Tuaguba Hill was undeveloped with only a small walking track led to the summit.
The Australian Army selected this location for the first heavy anti-aircraft battery to defend the Port Moresby area. There was no road to the summit, only a track. Army engineers and local labor transported the one ton guns and construction materials to the top of the hill over several weeks during January 1942.
Tuaguba Hill Gun Battery
Atop the summit Tuaguba Hill were emplaced four 3.7" Heavy Anti-Aircraft Guns (H1) built in Maribyrnong, Victoria were installed at this site. A predictor was installed on a concrete base. Also, an enclosing revetment made from empty drums filled with coral rubble. The battery was manned by the Australian Army, 23rd Heavy Anti-Aircraft Battery, one section. Several Lewis machine gun pits, to protect against low flying aircraft. Later an underground bunker was also constructed at the center of the installation. The guns were removed at the end of the Pacific War or immediately postwar.
The summit of this hill was largely untouched since the Pacific War. Atop the hill are concrete pads, barrels filled with rubble to create revetments and depressions indicating the location of machine gun pits. The concrete bunker at the center of the battery also remains. During 2006, a mobile phone tower was built at this location.
Batteries (1998) by Reg Kidd & Ray Neal details the history of this gun battery
Coastal Gun Batteries of Port Moresby - Then & Now by John Douglas
Australians at War Film Archive interview with Eric White, 23rd AA Battalion
Thanks to John Douglas and Edward Rogers for additional information
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October 23, 2019