The Guns of Fort Moutrie – New Display

Fort Moultrie maintains one of the best displays of Civil War-period heavy ordnance, and certainly the most storied such display.  Those stories have been a “gold mine” for posts (see, for instance… posts on the 7-inch Triple Band Brooke Rifle, the 8-inch Banded and Rifled Columbiads, and the 10-inch Banded and Rifled Columbiad.)  Several of those guns sit on “cannon row” outside the fort.  A most impressive display, with all those large guns lined up for inspection.

For many years, those guns sat very close to the ground on wood blocks.

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Obviously, wood deteriorates with time, particularly with tons of iron pressing down.  And being close to the ground, weeds were apt to spring up (as seen here).  Furthermore, the open bores suffered in the sea-side air….

Fort Moultrie 3 May 2010 548

and collected debris from less considerate visitors.

A few years back, the fort opened a project to upgrade the “cannon row” display.  An adopt-a-cannon program by Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Historical Trust gave the guns some much overdue maintenance.  The first time I’d gotten a chance to see the new display was during our recent vacation trip:

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A concrete blocks, shaped to support the specific weapon, now elevate the guns to a respectable viewing level.  A slab of concrete keeps the weeds at bay.  And plugs in the bores fight off corrosion and miscreant leavings.

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The work included a stripping and repainting.  So with a fresh coat of paint, markings stand out sharp:
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A job well done by the Fort Sumter-Fort Moultrie Trust and the National Parks Service.  Their work ensures these guns can keep telling stories for decades to come.

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