Ridgeway Civil War Research Center,
A virtual examination of artifacts of the American Civil War


Civil War Artillery
by Harry Ridgeway

Smoothbore ball, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, Wright time fuze, smoothbore 12 pounder, 4.62in.
Artillery 1280 Ball Wright time fuzed 12pdr. 4.62in.

This is the "Ridgeway Civil War Research Center...", a research tool for educational purposes only, and is provided at no cost to the reader. Some of the relics listed are retained in the author's collection, most reside in other collections and are not owned by the author. None of the items listed in this section are for sale, please refer to relicman.com sales listings for items offered for sale. This is a work in progress, I list items as I get to them, there are many patterns that are not listed yet, this list will be regularly updated as I get pictures and descriptions for more items. I will also correct mistakes, so if you see any please tell me. All items listed are believed to be authentic to the Civil War or as otherwise described. Any excavated relics have been recovered from private property with owners permission. This information is available for research purposes, pictures may be used by permission only.
All projectiles listed have been disarmed.

Most information on this page is from:
Field Artillery Projectiles of the American Civil War, 1993 Edition. by Thomas S. Dickey and Peter C. George.
Civil War Heavy Explosive Ordnance, A Guide to Large Artillery Prjectiles, Torpedoes, and Mines, by Jack Bell.
Artillery Fuses of the Civil War, by Charles H. Jones.
Pictures are by the author, unless otherwise indicated.

Weapons used:
Smoothbore 12 pounder, 4.62in. Caliber of the gun is 4.62in., round projectile diameter should measure 4.52 in. approximately, variations will be noted.
Coehorn mortar 12 pounder, 4.62in. Caliber of the gun is 4.62in., round projectile diameter should measure 4.52 in. approximately, variations will be noted.


Artillery 1281 Ball Wright time fuzed 12pdr. 4.62in.
Smoothbore ball, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, Wright time fuze, iron center with spanner holes, smoothbore 12 pounder, 4.62in.
Projectile was intended for the smoothbore 12 pounder "Napoleon" using the Wright time fuze designed to detonate in the air above the target, spreading fragments against troops in the open field. The Wright time fuze with a 15 second range, was a late war innovation, and would allow for a significantly longer firing range. However it is doubtful that any of the 12 pound smoothbores of the period could take the additional stress of such long range firing, hence this pattern had limited applicability. Fuze employed was the Wright time fuze which utilized a white metal ring marked for 15 second increments, center is serviced with an iron cap fastened with spanner holes, (Jones pg. 28) . Projectile measures: diameter 4.52in., weight 7lbs.
Ref: Dickey & George, Field Artillery (1993 Edition), pg. 37.

A1905...Smoothbore ball, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, Wright time fuze, iron center with spanner holes, smoothbore 12 pounder, 4.62in.
Projectile was intended for the smoothbore 12 pounder "Napoleon" using the Wright time fuze designed to detonate in the air above the target, spreading fragments against troops in the open field. The Wright time fuze with a 15 second range, was a late war innovation, and would allow for a significantly longer firing range. However it is doubtful that any of the 12 pound smoothbores of the period could take the additional stress of such long range firing, hence this pattern had limited applicability. Fuze employed was the Wright time fuze which utilized a white metal ring marked for 15 second increments, center is serviced with an iron cap fastened with spanner holes, (Jones pg. 28) . Projectile measures: diameter 4.52in., weight 7lbs. Wright time fuze intact. Metal is solid, minor areas of pitting. Projectile is disarmed: drill hole through the bottom, drill hole is left small, no evidence of powder was found inside. Recovered: not determined.
Ref: Dickey & George, Field Artillery (1993 Edition), pg. 37.


Artillery 1282 Ball Wright time fuzed 12pdr. 4.62in.
Smoothbore ball, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, Wright time fuze, iron center with screwdriver slot, smoothbore 12 pounder, 4.62in.
Projectile was intended for the smoothbore 12 pounder "Napoleon" using the Wright time fuze designed to detonate in the air above the target, spreading fragments against troops in the open field. The Wright time fuze with a 15 second range, was a late was innovation, and would allow for a significantly longer firing range. However it is doubtful that any of the 12 pound smoothbores of the period could take the additional stress of such long range firing, hence this pattern had limited applicability. Fuze employed was the Wright time fuze which utilized a white metal ring marked for 15 second increments, center is serviced with an iron cap fastened with a screwdriver slots, (Jones not listed). Projectile measures: diameter 4.52in., weight 7.9lb.
Ref: Dickey & George, Field Artillery (1993 Edition), pg. 37.

A1207...Smoothbore ball, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, Wright time fuze, iron center with screwdriver slot, smoothbore 12 pounder, 4.62in.
Projectile was intended for the smoothbore 12 pounder "Napoleon" using the Wright time fuze designed to detonate in the air above the target, spreading fragments against troops in the open field. The Wright time fuze with a 15 second range, was a late was innovation, and would allow for a significantly longer firing range. However it is doubtful that any of the 12 pound smoothbores of the period could take the additional stress of such long range firing, hence this pattern had limited applicability. Fuze employed was the Wright time fuze which utilized a white metal ring marked for 15 second increments, center is serviced with an iron cap fastened with a screwdriver slots, (Jones not listed). Projectile measures: diameter 4.52in., weight 7.9lb. Wright time fuze intact. Projectile is disarmed: drill hole through the bottom, drill hole is left small, no evidence of powder was found inside. Recovered: not determined.
Ref: Dickey & George, Field Artillery (1993 Edition), pg. 37.


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