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 Posted: Sun Mar 12th, 2006 08:32 pm
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javal1
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Shotgunshell,

First I want to tell you that I'm thrilled to see a 12 year old with an interest in the Civil War. Unfortunately, it seems you were allowed to register in error. There are laws, called COPA laws, which were designed to protect people of a certain age from unscrupulous websites. While we are not that, the way the laws are written have persuaded us to not accept members under 13.

The way around this is to get one or both of your parents to send Civil War Interactive a letter stating that they have no objection to you belonging to this discussion group. Our mailing address is at the top right of every page in the CWi site.

In the meantime, I have had to delete your registration. You can still read the site and the board, but cannot reply. I really apologize, and I'll watch for a letter from your parents(s). Keep up the Civil War interest!



 Posted: Mon Mar 13th, 2006 01:01 am
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Kent Nielsen
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 too bad.:X

Last edited on Mon Mar 13th, 2006 01:11 am by Kent Nielsen



 Posted: Tue Mar 14th, 2006 07:22 pm
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rebalgray
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It didn't quite work out that way though; there is no powder chamber in a napoleon therefore it cannot operate as a howitzer.


Calcav, explain please what that would have to do with it.

How about Porter Allexander?

Rebalgray



 Posted: Thu Mar 16th, 2006 05:49 pm
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calcav
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Rebelgray,

Let me quote from Field Artillery Weapons of the Civil War: To bridge the gap between high velocity guns and "vertical firing" mortars, howitzers were intended to lob hollow explosive or incendiary projectiles among massed troops or into fortifications at intermediate range. High, curved trajectories permitted firing above the heads of friendly forces, from emplacements screened from direct fire. Lightweight hollow projectiles, low velocities and modest range, and the need for smaller propellant charges permitted howitzers to be shorter, lighter, and more mobile than guns of the same bore diamaters.

In order for the howitzer to lob the shell with a smaller powder charge, the barrel had a small powder chamber cast or tooled into the end of the bore.

Because the Napolean was cast without a powder chamber it could not fufill the designers plan for it to serve as both a gun and a howitzer.



 Posted: Fri Mar 17th, 2006 02:05 am
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rebalgray
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calcav,

I understand the difference in the two canon. What I don't understand is what the powder chamber has to do with wether it can be used as a howitzer.
If you can elivate the tube far enough, why couldn't you put a redeused charge in like a howitzer?



 Posted: Fri Mar 17th, 2006 01:49 pm
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calcav
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Rebalgray,

It is my understanding that the powder chamber was to concentrate the force of the smaller charge of powder, thus similar projectiles of the same type, using powder charges roughly comparable, the howitzer fired double the weight of metal, at lower velocity, than the gun.

I'm not for sure if the howitzer used a different carriage that allowed for firing at a higher elevation. I did find a refrence that certain howitzers had the elevating screw set further back to allow for the higher elevation.

I have read accounts of light field artillery using their guns and rifles like howitzers by digging holes in the ground for the trails and it is documented that the Federals at Fort Sumter dug pits for some of thier unmounted guns so they could serve them like howitzers.



 Posted: Thu Nov 22nd, 2007 06:11 pm
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arkansas walker
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I am interested, I own a family rifle used in the civil war, more than likely by the south since I live in Arkansas. Its a Kentucky Long rifle I think with the name on a gold inlay on top just past the flink firing mechanism. Name is Benjamin Darby - family believes he is distant relative and made the gun around 1840-1860. Do you know anything about these and worth...its not in firing condition and the stamper is missing.  Let me know I also love discussing this war.....

Thx,

arkansas walker



 Posted: Thu Nov 22nd, 2007 06:18 pm
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Roger
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First of all welcome to the forum.
Do you think Benjamin Darby was the gunmaker, or the owner of the weapon?

Roger



 Posted: Thu Nov 22nd, 2007 06:32 pm
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Texas Defender
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Arkansas walker-

  Do you know whether or not this Benjamin Darby served in the Civil War?

  The Civil War Soldiers & Sailors System has five listings on the Confederate side for Benjamin Darbys. They are:

Benjamin Darby, PVT, 39th Virginia Infantry, Co. A

Benjamin C. Darby, PVT, 1st Alabama Infantry, Co. E

Benjamin F. Darby, PVT, 1st Bn, Alabama Artillery, Co. E

Benjamin F. Darby, PVT, 57th Alabama Infantry, Co. A (Probably same person as above)

Benjamin W. Darby, PVT (Buglar), 5th Bn, Florida Cavalry

  If he served, the Alabama guys seem the most likely candidates.

  There is also one listing on the Union side:

Benjamin Darby, PVT, 41st Ohio

  It is also possible that the weapon was used in the war and carried by someone else, perhaps a relative.

 

Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System

 



 Posted: Thu Nov 22nd, 2007 06:36 pm
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Roger
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Texas Def, that's exactly where I went to look:D hence my question.

Roger



 Posted: Thu Nov 22nd, 2007 06:43 pm
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Texas Defender
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Roger (and arkansas walker)-

  Maybe I can pre-empt you on the next search. :D

  I have located the gravesite of Benjamin F. Walker of the 57th AL. He died while a POW at Camp Chase, Ohio and is buried there.

Pvt Benjamin F. Darby (1835 - 1864) - Find A Grave Memorial

  There is another Benjamin Darby buried in Mississippi who might be connected to the weapon.

Benjamin Darby (1802 - 1863) - Find A Grave Memorial



 Posted: Thu Nov 22nd, 2007 07:01 pm
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Roger
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You got me on that one, but it's another site added to my favourite places, thanks:D

Roger.



 Posted: Fri Nov 23rd, 2007 12:22 am
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arkansas walker
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Unsure of the service, I am really not sure of the man being a relative, you know how relatives can talk and make up things to sound good so I am only sure that it has his name on gun and it was made in the time frame of 1840-1860. I am tring to find out value of gun so I can have it insured and protected since it is a family heirloom.

Thx,

Arkansas Walker  )__



 Posted: Fri Nov 23rd, 2007 04:17 pm
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j harold 587
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You may wish to contact the NationaL Muzzle Loading Rifle Association. The headquartes is in Friendship Indiana. I'm sure they have a web site. Don't have any more  information handy. I'm sure they can give you trust worthy people in your area that can give you the information necessary to properly insure your rifle.



 Posted: Fri Nov 23rd, 2007 06:45 pm
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jbeatty
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As a Union Artillery Reenactor, please allow me to jump in.  The "Napoleon" you first mentioned was offically named the "light 12 pound gun," but is more commonly known as 'the Napoleon."  The name resulted in the gun being named after Emperor Napoleon III of France.  The French were the ones who developed this gun.  The Civil War gun you see at reenactments is the 1857 model, patented in 1857, and made in this country by the Ames Manufacturing Company.  These were smoothbore pieces and were not "howitzers."  Remember that "howitzers" had chambers at the breech for the powder charge.  There were many variations to these pieces, including handles on top of the barrel near the trunnions or even rifling.  As you probably already know, bronze guns cannot be rifled, as the bronze will not hold the rifling for long.  Despite the barrel outweighing the more widely used 3" Ordnance Rifle by about 400 pounds, this piece was amazingly manueverable in the field.  It is because of its relative manueverability, its fairly effective long range, and most importantly, its effectiveness as defense against infantry within 500 yards, that it has been called the "workhorse of Civil War Artillery."  There were approximately 1,127 smoothbore Napoleons made during the Civil War, and about 10 rifled models.  There were several foundries making these guns, mostly in Massachusetts, for the North.  Incidentally, both the North and the South produced these guns, with the only telling difference, was the Northern guns usually had a muzzle swell, while the Southern- made ones usually had a straight tube.  The effective range of these guns was approximately 2,000 yards, only slightly less than a 3" Ordnance Rifle.  The difference was that the 3" Ordnance Rifle had superior accuracy at that distance due to its rifling, whereas the Napoleon was much better, especially with cannister, at shorter ranges.  As the name implies the Napoleon shot a 12 pound cannonn ball.  Technically it shot a spherical shot, or shell.  The 12 pounder could fuze their ammunition the same as a rifled barrel, except they could not use a percussion fuze.  With the advent of breechloaders, and more specifically, further advancements in rifled pieces, the Model 1857 12 pound Napoleon was destined not to continue in active service after the Civil War.



 Posted: Sun Jul 24th, 2011 02:08 am
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pender
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Members, I read some where over the years, about a confederate sniper shooting an union officer in the Washington defences or Petersburg lines. The officer was shot standing beside Lincoln. I was telling this story to one of my coworker's, and he asked me the distance of the shot. And I tried finding it in my book's this evening and have had no luck. I also found a web page that said this story was fiction. I would like to ask the member's, if anyone know's these question's? Did this story indeed happen? And if it did. Who made this shot? What was the distance? What was the weapon?

Pender

Last edited on Sun Jul 24th, 2011 02:41 am by pender



 Posted: Sun Jul 24th, 2011 05:54 am
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Hellcat
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I thought that was Fort Stevens in the Washington area. I know that Lincoln's supposed to have come under sniper fire at Fort Stevens on July 12, 1864 and Military Channel's Unsolved History did an episode on threats to his life that included whether or not a sniper could have hit him then.

Last edited on Sun Jul 24th, 2011 06:32 am by Hellcat



 Posted: Sun Jul 24th, 2011 11:47 am
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Mark
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As likely as not it was a stray bullet. Was it a possible shot at over 500 yards? Yes, under ideal conditions, however, I find it hard to believe that a shot at that range at a point target during an active skirmish would have been intentional. I saw part of that show Hellcat. What conclusion did they come to?

Mark



 Posted: Sun Jul 24th, 2011 01:39 pm
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pender
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Hellcat, you are correct I found this happened at Fort Stevens. There seem's to be some dispute over the actual event's. I am kinda guessing, but I think I read my first account of this in Civil War Time's magazine. There was a plaque erected in 1920 by survivors of the sixth army corp. http://www.hmdb.org/marker.asp?marker=901 I guess thier is no way to now for sure how far this shot actualy was. Mark, A confederate sniper rifle procured in small quantities from blockade runners, was the 45. caliber British Whitworh, fitted with a telescopic sight, it was said to be accurate at 1,500 yard's. Thank's for all the help. Pender

Last edited on Sun Jul 24th, 2011 02:04 pm by pender



 Posted: Sun Jul 24th, 2011 03:37 pm
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Hellcat
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Don't recall, Mark. I remember them talking about the shot and having to take several attempts at it because it was a windy day. Remember them talking about bomb plots and Lincoln having his hat shot off while riding. I've maybe seen the episode, really seen it, once and actually seen it twice. Really seen meaning not being very distracted at the time, and that was a while ago. I think they decided under ideal conditions it was possible. But if it was too windy it might not have happened on purpose

Pender, that may be accurate and it may also be a bit low. According to this site, http://www.civilwarweapons.net/civil_war_shoulder_arms, it was accurate to eighteen hundred yards with the telescopic sight used. And the Enfield was accurate up to eleven hundred yards. The history supplemental on my Civil War Generals 2  says the Enfield was only up to 1,000 yards instead of 1,100. The according to the Berdan Sharpshooter's site, http://www.berdansharpshooters.com/tactics.html, the Model 1859 Sharps Rifle was able to acquire up to a 1,000 yards. Right now I'm not in a position to be grabbing any of my books and checking what they say about ranges so I don't know how accurate any of this is.



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