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


Civil War Artillery
by Harry Ridgeway

Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Artillery 1920 Ball Columbiad shell 10in.

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 Columbiad gun, 10in. Caliber of the gun is 10.0in., round projectile diameter should measure 9.88in. approximately, variations will be noted.

The big 10 in balls generally fall into two categories, Columbiads or mortars. The mortar was a lighter gun, designed to send a lighter ball on a very high trajectory over the embankment and into a dug in trench. The walls on these mortars is going to be relative thin, usually around 1.0 inch to 1.5 inch. Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This s were heavy Navy smoothbores, and were used in siege operations against land forts or other ships, the balls will be heavier, the walls are generally 2 inch thickness or greater.

A 10 inch ball will measure 9.87 in. after deducting for windage.


Artillery 1921 Ball Columbiad shell 10in.
Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, with lifting ears, drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A1709...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, with lifting ears, drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Seacoast drive in fuze is intact. Projectile is disarmed, drill hole on the bottom. Recovered: not determined.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A1710. Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, with lifting ears, drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Seacoast drive in fuze is intact. Projectile is disarmed, drill hole through the paper section of the time fuze. Recovered: not determined.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2229. Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, with lifting ears, drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Seacoast drive in fuze is intact. Projectile is disarmed, drill hole through the paper section of the time fuze. Recovered: not determined.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.


Artillery 1922 Ball Columbiad shell 10in.
Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, with lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A0104. Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, with lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Fuze is missing. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Congaree River by Dave Topper.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.


Artillery 1923 Ball Columbiad shell 10in.
Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2982...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 90lbs. Sea coast fuze fully intact. Metal is heavily pitted, significant loss all the way around the ball, fuze appears to protrude above the surface, however this is actually metal loss. Projectile is disarmed, drill hole through the bottom. Recovered: Key West Florida.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.


Artillery 1924 Ball Columbiad shell 10in.
Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A0133...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Drive in fuze is missing. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Congaree River by David Topper, this was a disposal site used to dispose of surplus war material.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A0134...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Drive in fuze is missing. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Congaree River by David Topper, this was a disposal site used to dispose of surplus war material.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2286...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Drive in fuze is missing. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: surplus material.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2363...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Drive in fuze is missing. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: surplus material.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2371...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze or drive in seacoast watercap fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal or Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a drive in seacoast watercap fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole capable of receiving any type of drive in fuze including a wood fuze, Jones pg. 6. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Drive in fuze is missing. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Metal soft, but cleaned and stable. Recovered: North Carolina defenses.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.


Artillery 1925 Ball Columbiad shell 10in.
Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in., Confederate arsenal marked.
Projectile was believed to have been manufactured in the Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. The Confederate castings are indistinguished from the Federal castings. The Confederates apparently used lettered arsenal marks, which are weak and often not visible. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a wood fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2598...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in., Confederate arsenal marked., "D".
Projectile was believed to have been manufactured in the Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. The Confederate castings are indistinguished from the Federal castings. The Confederates apparently used lettered arsenal marks, which are weak and often not visible. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a wood fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Wood fuze is missing. Arsenal mark "D" is visble. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Metal soft, but cleaned and stable. Recovered: North Carolina defenses.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.

A2599...Smoothbore artillery projectile, spherical ball, bursting shell, thick walled, without lifting ears, wood fuze, Columbiad smoothbore, 10 in., Confederate arsenal marked., "T".
Projectile was believed to have been manufactured in the Confederate arsenals for the Columbiad seige gun. The Confederate castings are indistinguished from the Federal castings. The Confederates apparently used lettered arsenal marks, which are weak and often not visible. This was a heavy smoothbore and the firing subjected the balls to considerable stress, consequently the walls are thick, approximately 3in. at the fuze hole, and the shell is heavier than a mortar. Lifting ears can be on either type of shell. Fuze employed was a wood fuze, opening 1.5in. at surface, shell is cast for a smooth tapered fuze hole. Projectile measures: diameter 9.85in., weight 105lbs. Wood fuze is missing. Arsenal mark "T" is visble. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Metal soft, but cleaned and stable. Recovered: North Carolina defenses.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ordnance, pg. 72.


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