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US Army artillery unit “in Battery”


Subdeacon Joe

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American Civil War — view of half a US Army artillery unit “in Battery” (a full battery would have 6 guns) ready to engage the enemy (here, no doubt training). This battery appears to be equipped with 10-Pounder Parrot Rifles. Note the horses are facing the trail of the guns (the end opposite the muzzle). The horses closest to the gun are attached to the limber, the two wheeled wagon that attaches to the gun to tow it. Farther back are the caissons: a limber attached to another two wheeled wagon carrying two artillery chests (each limber also had one ammunition chest).
A battery, with all their horses, takes up a space about as large as the playing area of a football field: Army regulations called for 14 yards between guns; a six gun battery (each gun about two yards wide) would front 82 yards. In depth, in a perfect situation, from the muzzle of the cannon to the rear of the caisson would stretch 47 yards.
 
 
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Mary and I are watching The Patriot and talking about the battle scenes with acres of smoke.  I've often wondered how many train loads of black powder was made and transported to front lines in the War of Northern Agretion.  Also, shells and bullets.  

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16 minutes ago, Warden Callaway said:

Mary and I are watching The Patriot and talking about the battle scenes with acres of smoke.  I've often wondered how many train loads of black powder was made and transported to front lines in the War of Northern Agretion.  Also, shells and bullets.  

 

In '08 we went to Gettysburg for the 145th anniversary.  We had just short of 100 pounds of powder with us (over 100 and we would have needed placards and permits).  Some of the long straight stretches east of the Rockies there was time to think about things other than keeping it under 80mph (over that and the trailer wanted to fishtail, so I tried to keep it between 70 and 80). There were about 150 guns total at that event.  Figure each one had about 100 pounds.  There were about 15,000 infantry and cavalry, figure each had the minimum recommended 2 pounds.  Likely more.  

 

So for hobbyists, for a three day event, we had maybe 50,000 pounds of powder there.  

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During the War of 1861 the Augusta Powderworks produced close to 3,000,000 pounds. I had read several years ago, though, that the powder captured there sustained the federal government for quite a few years after the War.

 

A quick search about federal production yielded only a figure of about 8,000,000 pounds per year.

 

How much of that made it to the lines I haven't seen.  

 

You might find this interesting:

https://www.essentialcivilwarcurriculum.com/civil-war-ordnance-bureaus.html

 

 

 

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