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


Civil War Artillery
by Harry Ridgeway

Rifled artillery projectile, Sawyer design, 4.2 in.
Artillery 5220 Sawyer 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:
Sawyer rifle, 4.2in. Caliber of the gun is 4.2in., 6 grooves, projectile diameter should measure 4.1 in. approximately, variations will be found.


Artillery 5221 Sawyer 4.2in.
Rifled artillery projectile, Sawyer design, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, lead sabot with lead sleeve and pre-cast flanges, Sawyer percussion fuze, Sawyer rifle, 4.2 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals, following the design of Addison M Sawyer. The sabot system was designed with a massive lead sabot covering the entire base and the sides , including six flanges cast into the shell, it apparently proved unsatisfactory because the excessive lead consumed would gum up the bore on the cannon , and the elasticity of the lead probably lessened the dispersion of fragments. This experimental pattern was cast with flanges, covered with a lead sleeve, the government bought 250 shells of this caliber, this shell was not fired. Fuze employed was the Sawyer percussion fuze, Jones pg. 33. Marks on bottom : "15 14/16" , this refers to the weight of the bursting charge. Shell measures: diameter 4.15in. (from the grooves), length 8.5in. (excluding fuze), weight 16lbs.
Ref: Bell, Heavy Ordnance, pg. 355.

A2435...Rifled artillery projectile, Sawyer design, Federal manufacture, bursting shell, lead sabot with lead sleeve and pre-cast flanges, Sawyer percussion fuze, Sawyer rifle, 4.2 in.
Projectile was manufactured in the Federal arsenals, following the design of Addison M Sawyer. The sabot system was designed with a massive lead sabot covering the entire base and the sides , including six flanges cast into the shell, it apparently proved unsatisfactory because the excessive lead consumed would gum up the bore on the cannon , and the elasticity of the lead probably lessened the dispersion of fragments. This experimental pattern was cast with flanges, covered with a lead sleeve, the government bought 250 shells of this caliber, this shell was not fired. Fuze employed was the Sawyer percussion fuze, Jones pg. 33. Marks on bottom : "15 14/16" , this refers to the weight of the bursting charge. Shell measures: diameter 4.15in. (from the grooves), length 8.5in. (excluding fuze), weight 16lbs. Nondug shell, sabot and fuze intact. Shell disarmed, fuze is removable exposing empty interior. Recovered: surplus stocks.
Ref: Bell, Heavy Ordnance, pg. 355., this is the example published.


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