The Blah Of Blah Essay, Research Paper
6-POUNDER FIELD GUNS
The 6-pounder field gun was a lightweight, mobile piece that was a favorite of the field artillery in the first half of the nineteenth century. Rapid changes in technology and design had largely superseded it by the beginning of the American Civil War, but when superior weaponry was not available, some 6-pounders saw action. NOTE: While some of the guns illustrated here may have played little or no part in the Civil War, they are included here because photos of them have been published nowhere else.
6-pounder iron field gun, Model of 1819. Total length, 71.6 inches; weight, 742 pounds; total production, approximately 100 by Fort Pitt Foundry; known survivors, 30. Known as a “Walking Stick” for its slimness, this is the first identified model with full rimbases. It pioneered simplicity of design that was not to be fully accepted for another forty years. Its 10-inch diameter reinforce, combined with the unreliable cast iron of that period, proved notoriously fragile.
6-pounder iron field gun, Pattern of 1827. Total length, 57 inches; weight, 780 pounds; total production, 98 by Fort Pitt Foundry; known survivors, 7. A stubbier version of the Model of 1819.
6-pounder iron field gun, Model of 1834. Total length, 60.5 inches; weight, 835 pounds; total production, 134 by Columbia and Fort Pitt Foundries; known survivors, 16. The guns of this pattern were the last fieldpieces made by either foundry.
6-pounder bronze field gun, Model of 1835. Total length, 65.6 inches; weight, 740 pounds; total production, 57 by Cyrus Alger and N.P. Ames; known survivors, 19. This slimmer version of the later Model of 1841 represents the return to bronze as the preferred material for fieldpieces.
6-pounder iron field gun, Model of 1836. Total length, 65.6 inches; weight, 785 pounds; total production, 13 by Alger; known survivors, 3. Identical in design to the bronze Model of 1835 above.
6-pounder bronze field gun, Model of 1838. Total length, 59.3 inches; weight, 690 pounds; total production, 96 by Cyrus Alger and N.P. Ames; known survivors, 29. A shorter version of the bronze Model of 1835 above with the same Registry Number series continuing from it for both foundries.
Markings on bronze Models of 1835 and 1838 fieldpieces. Unlike the markings on earlier and later cannon, the Registry Number, weight and inspectors’ initials are located on the upper breech.
6-pounder bronze field gun, Model of 1840. Total length, 59.3 inches; weight, 812 pounds; total production, 27 by N.P. Ames; known survivors, 4. A slightly thicker version of the bronze Model of 1838 above with the Registry Number series continuing from it.
6-pounder bronze field gun, Model of 1841. Total length, 65.6 inches; weight, 880 pounds; total production, 817 for U.S. Army Ordnance by Alger (197), Ames (540), Hooper (8), Marshall (23), and Revere (2) plus perhaps 50 more for various state agencies; known survivors, 325. Many of these guns were reamed and rifled to 3.80-inch James rifles, Type 1, at the beginning of the Civil War.
6-pounder bronze cadet gun by Cyrus Alger. Total length, 50.5 inches; weight, 570 pounds. Four of these guns were produced for Virginia Military Institute in 1848, two for Arkansas Military Institute in 1851, and four for Georgia Military Institute in 1852. Of these ten, seven are known to survive. These guns were intended only for drill and instruction; however, a shortage of fieldpieces in the Confederacy at the beginning of the Civil War resulted in their being commandeered for active duty.
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