Projectiles

These projectile cutaways show that even the much less advanced Confederate arsenals were producing sophisticated projectiles to a wide variety of designs. Unfortunately, a failure to standardize on just a few calibers meant that there were significant inefficiencies in manufacturing and excessive complications in the supply of the correct ammunition to artillery units in the field.

1 A 96lb (44kg) shell with a copper base, and featuring radial grooves to grab rifling

2 Solid wrought iron 40.5lb (18kg) bolt

3 31 lb (14kg) shell with copper plate base

4 58lb (26kg) shell with copper plate base

5 Wrought iron 26lb (12kg) shell with soft metal rings on base

6 Wrought iron 8lb (3.6kg) shell with soft metal rings on base

7 Iron shell in 26lb (12kg) caliber with copper rings at the base to grab rifling in barrel

Iron shell in 8lb (3.6kg) caliber with copper rings to grab rifling Lead-saboted 12.31b (5.6kg) shell 12.21b (5.5kg) wrought iron bolt for a Whitworth breechloading rifle

Pounder Whitworth Breechloading RifleCivil War Projectiles

By the time of the Civil War, after centuries of very slow development, artillery technology was at last starting to make progress, as these projectiles used by the Confederate artillery show. Increasingly sophisticated fuzes were being produced, while rifling in the barrels was causing the projectiles to spin, thus stabilizing them in flight and considerably increasing their accuracy.

There has recently been a marked increase in the collecting of projectiles and there is an excellent official collection at West Point, with representative specimens being found at various National Park museums.

1 English Britten 3-5-inch (89mm) shell (12-pounder |5.4kg|)

2 English Whitworth pattern 2.75-inch (70mm) shell (12-pounder (5.4kg|)

3 English Whitworth 2.15-inch (55mm) shell

4 English Armstrong pattern 3-inch shell (10-pounder (4.5kg|)

5 Confederate pattern 3.5-inch (89mm) Blakely shell

6 English Britten 3-inch (76mm) shell (10-pounder |4.5kg|)

7 Confederate Schenkel 2.25-inch (57mm) shell

8 Frankfort arsenal fuze packs

9 Read pattern 3-inch (76mm) shell (10-pounder |4.5kg|)

10 Archer pattern 3-inch (76mm) shell (10-pounder |4.5kg|)

11 Read pattern 3-inch (76mm) shell (10-pounder |4.5kg|)

12 Tennessee sabot 3-inch (76mm) shell (10-pounder [4.5kg])

13 Read pattern 3-inch (76mm)

Old 76mm ProjectilePdr Propaganda Shell Fuze

Artifacts courtesy ol West Point Museum. Wosi Point. N Y.

Heavy artillery was also making great progress. Of particular note here are the bands at the shoulders (items1-4), designed to steady the projectile as it traveled down the barrel, the copper base which provided a gas-tight seal and the grooves on items 2 and 3, which ensured that the projectile spun-up properly. Projectile item 3 was a solid bolt for a 100-pounder (6.4inch) gun, whose impact on a solid target such as the wall of a fortress must have been considerable.

5.3 inch Mullane shell for a rifled 18-pounder Confederate gun

5.8 inch Selma shell for a rifled 24-pounder Confederate gun

6.4 inch Brooke solid bolt for a 100-pounder Confederate gun

6.4 inch Read shell for a 100-pounder Confederate gun

6.2 inch Read shell for 100-pounder Confederate gun

Artifacts courtesy ol West Point Museum. Wosi Point. N Y.

Confederate Read Shell

Union Sailor's Work Uniform

As in other navies, Union sailors had a very distinctive form of dress, that seen here being the normal summer working uniform. This consisted of a pair of light cotton working trousers, a woolen shirt and a woolen cap. wool being chosen because it breathed well during the summer. The embroidered flag and crest are probably more a patriotic gesture on the part of the wearer than a uniform requirement.

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