Battle of Hanover

During the last full weekend of June I spent some time with a fellow HMDB regular collecting and documenting the markers around Hanover. With “Plenty Enough Blame to Go Around” in hand for reference, we were able to locate the majority of the markers (list) (map). For the set, our photos are a little sparse. The town of Hanover has grown a bit over the century plus since the battle. As such, in several places where historical homes or sites are referenced, a modern construction home or business now stands. Plaques indicating a structure stood at the time of the battle are fixed to numerous buildings around the center of town. However I cannot locate any specific references which might guide a visitor to the name or history of these structures. So while I have a score of photos of buildings, none have any context which can be linked to marker entries with any degree of accuracy.

The Federal Monument in Mount Olivet Cemetery is noteworthy.

The two field pieces flanking the monument are actually replicas. Their form and appearance are in line with similar replicas cast for the Gettysburg battlefield. While looking like 3-inch Ordnance rifles from a distance, these have rough exteriors, a visible lateral casting seam, not to mention a lack of standard markings.

However, in the town square are two authentic Civil War era pieces. Two 2.9 inch Parrott Rifles. One of which is touted as “No. 1.” Both carry the letters “C. P.” over the trunnions.

While I’ve read and heard several sources state this particular piece above (No 1) was the “very first Parrott rifle ever made,” the claim does not match with the records. Robert Parrott had experimented with the design prior to 1861, but the first batch accepted by the government was a set of ten 2.9-inch, 10-pounder rifles in May 1861. However, pre-dating the government delivery considerably, one Parrott rifle was delivered to the Commonwealth of Virginia in 1860. Just after the outbreak of the war, the states of New York and Pennsylvania ordered examples of the Parrott 10-pounders. The New York examples are stamped “S.N.Y.” over the trunnions. The Pennsylvania order received the initials “C.P.” for Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. (For a full discussion, please refer to Field Artillery Weapons of the Civil War, by James C. Hazlett, Edwin Olmstead, and M. Hume Parks, page 109-110). In addition to the twins at Hanover, two more examples of this batch are displayed on the Gettysburg battlefield.

The markers at Hanover add to a growing collection of the Gettysburg Campaign. Most of the Civil War trails markers for the Gettysburg Campaign are in the database now. As time permits, I’ll dress up groupings as done with Antietam.

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