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


Civil War Artillery
by Harry Ridgeway

Rifled artillery projectile, Read design, 4.2in.
Artillery 5140 Read 4.2in.


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:
Parrott 30 pounder rifle, 4.2in.
Caliber of the gun is 4.2in., 5 grooves, projectile diameter should measure 4.1 in. approximately, variations will be noted.
Confederate 30 pounder rifle, 4.2in. Caliber of the gun is 4.2in., 5 grooves, (apparently copied from Federal 30 opounder), projectile diameter should measure 4.1 in. approximately, variations will be noted.

Artillery 5141 Read shell long pattern pointed nose 4.2in.
Rifled artillery projectile, Read design, Confederate manufacture, bursting shell, long pattern with smooth sides , pointed nose, wrought iron sabot, wood time fuze, Confederate 30 pounder rifle, 4.2in.
Projectile was Confederate manufactured following the prewar invention of Robert Parrott andJohn Read working together. The sabot system utilized was a wrought iron ring, the Confederateversion developed by Read is generally thinner than the Federal pattern. Both sides produced a smooth sided long shell, this Confederate version is distinguished by a lathe dimple in the base, a casting sprue on the nose, and the smooth sides were finished by turning on a lathe , nose on this pattern is relatively tapered. The wrought iron sabot was cast much thinner on this 30 pound pattern than the smaller calibers and therifling is not precast into this sabot. Fuze employed was a wood time fuze, Jones Fuzes pg. 2, fuze hole is smooth and tapered, the simple to make fuze could easily be hammered into place. Projectile measures: diameter 4.1in., length 12.5in., weight 26lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ord. pg. 329.

A0654...

Projectile measures: diameter 4.1in., length 12.5in., weight 26lbs. Fired sabot shows five lands and grooves, the sabotspread to a larger diameter on firing. Wood fuze is missing. Metal quality is solid, areas of light pitting. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Richmond, Petersburg, Virginia campaign.

A1489...

Projectile measures: diameter 4.1in., length 12.5in., weight 26lbs. Fired sabot shows five lands and grooves, the sabot spread to a largerdiameter on firing. Wood fuze is missing. Metal quality issolid, areas of light pitting. Projectile is disarmed, open fuzehole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Richmond, Petersburg,Virginia campaign.

A2163...

Projectile measures: diameter 4.1in., length 12.5in., weight 26lbs. Fired sabot shows five lands and grooves, the sabot spread to a larger diameter on firing. Wood fuze is missing. Metal quality is solid, areas of light pitting. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Richmond, Petersburg, Virginia campaign.


Artillery 5142 Read shell long pattern rounded nose 4.2in.
Rifled artillery projectile, Read design, Confederate manufacture, bursting shell, long pattern with smooth sides, blunt nose, wrought iron sabot, wood time fuze, Confederate 30 pounder rifle, 4.2in.
Projectile was Confederate manufactured following the prewar invention of Robert Parrott and John Read working together. The sabot system utilized was a wrought iron ring, the Confederate version developed by Read is generally thinner than the Federal pattern. Both sides produced a smooth sided long shell, this Confederate version is distinguished by a lathe dimple in the base, a casting sprue on the nose, and the smooth sides were finished by turning on a lathe , nose on this pattern is bluntly rounded. The wrought iron sabot was cast much thinner on this 30 pound pattern than the smaller calibers and the rifling is not precast into this sabot. Fuze employed was a wood timefuze, Jones Fuzes pg. 2, fuze hole is smooth and tapered,the simple to make fuze could easily be hammered into place. Projectile measures: diameter 4.13in., length 9.75in. (excluding fuze), weight 23.5lbs.
Ref: Bell Heavy Ord. pg. 328.

A0164...

Projectile measures: diameter 4.13in., length 9.75in. (excluding fuze), weight 23.5lbs. Sabot is not fired. Wood fuze is missing. Metal quality is solid, areas of light pitting. Projectile is disarmed, open fuze hole exposes empty interior. Recovered: Richmond, Petersburg, Virginia campaign. Recovered: by Mac Mason Ft. McGilvery, Petersburg 1969, according to Mac Mason artwork now lost to restoration. (shell was badly flaking most of his finish fell off the shell, all coatings on shells are temporary, it is like painting a house, they need to be recoated periodically.


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