The Artilleryman Magazine – Fall 2016 Issue

The fall issue of The Artilleryman Magazine arrived last Friday.  If you are not a subscriber already, I highly recommend this periodical.  Especially in the new, reworked format.

Articles in this issue include:

  • Schenkl Combination Fuse, by John D. Bartleson,Jr., CW04 (Ret.), USN – Detailed technical examination, backed up with lavish illustrations, on this type of fuse.  Added much to my understanding of Schenkl fuses.
  • Sherman’s Blunder Led to McPherson’s Death, by Stephen Davis, Ph.D. –  General James McPherson’s death occurred at a critical juncture of the Atlanta Campaign (I would argue a more critical point than John Reynold’s death).  This article explores the tactical details… and interprets the wartime site photos.
  • Lady Artillerists, by Gary Brown –  A look at some of the legends and lore behind female artilerists, drawing from American and European history… and pointing to the branch’s future as the military opens combat roles to female soldiers.
  • 25th Loomis’ Battery Long Range Artillery Match, by Don Lutz and Ericka Hoffman – Report from the July 30-31 authentic artillery competition.  Participants fired 584 rounds, in this 25th year of the match.  It is held on the Grayling Michigan National Guard Range Complex.
  • U.S. 30-Pounder Parrott Sight, by Thomas Bailey – Photos and essay discussing the arrangement and use of this type of sight, which we often see in wartime photos.
  • All Did Their Duty: Artillery at the Battle of Trenton, by Joshua Shepherd. “Trenton constituted the first great triumph for America’s field artillery….” Need we say more?
  • Is your Cannonball Explosive?, by John Biemeck, Colonel (Ret.) – An authoritative approach to handling Civil War era ordnance.  Very important read… and many lessons to take to heart.  Though I fear some will just read “it is OK to handle the projectiles” without fully reading the recommended practices.
  • Pair of French Naval Guns Captured by the British, by John Morris – Examination of two French short 6-pdrs (Model of 1786), from Fort Ticonderoga.

Also included is a news update from the US Army Artillery Museum.  The Artillery Bookshelf has a review of American Breechloading Mobile Artillery, 1875-1953.  And letters to the editor include a submission from myself, discussing a claim based on an Ordnance Return (I may provide more details down the road in a blog post).

I mentioned new format in the opening above.  That is about to become “newer” and extending to 64 pages in the Spring 2017 issue.  Jack Melton, who took over the magazine in 2015, has certainly taken the periodical to a higher level.  Illustrations jump off the page!  And as you see from the list of articles above, the content extends beyond just the gun tubes… touching upon other aspects of military history, though always relating back to the artillery of course.  Great work!

The Artilleryman Magazine Fall 2013 Issue

The Fall 2013 edition of the Artilleryman is out this month. Featured articles with Civil War interest include:

  • Analysis by Steven W. Knott of two photos showing Wiard Rifles on Morris Island.  In the Summer issue, he provided an excellent history of the Wiard rifles.  Knott is filling in some much needed detail to the history of these rare guns.
  • A look at the “Swamp Angel,” with the history of this famous gun.  David Martin adds more details than I did in my post on the same topic earlier this year.
  • Gettysburg Battle 150th – four pages of artillery in action during this summer’s sesquicentennial of that three day battle.
  • Photo gallery of night artillery fire on the New Market battlefield.

Non-Civil War related articles:

  • A look at a Revolutionary War era British Traveling Carriage built by Dr. Bruce Anderson for his 6-pdr field gun from the early 1700s.  Anderson used John Muller’s Treatise as a guide to reconstruct the carriage.
  • “Victorious Artilery Sergeant” – Chris Espenshade provides a study of Sergeant James Keating, a British artillerist who directed artillery in the battles of Prairie du Chien and Credit Island during the War of 1812.
  • A museum review of Southsea Castle, in Portsmouth, England.  The old seacoast fort features artillery dating back to 1544, with quite a number of English weapons in use at the time of the American Civil War.
  • Offering timeless lessons on the subject of safety around the guns, accounts from 1825-26 about cannon accidents.

Book reviews in this issue include:

  • “In the Limber Chest’ reviewed by Peter Frandsen.  This work is a compilation of Civil War era drill manuals, with modern safety practices overlaid.  I’m planning to purchasing a copy myself based on the review.

Editor Kathryn Jorgensen provides a selection of artillery new in the “A Little Roar” section in the opening pages of the magazine.  Civil War artillery related news includes restoration of 30-pdr Confederate Parrotts at Marietta, Ohio and 3-inch Ordnance Rifles in Williamsport, Maryland.  A letter to the editor continues the discussion about unfixed ammunition used in rifled guns during the Civil War.

Another issue with good reads from The Artilleryman.

The Artilleryman Magazine Summer 2013 Issue

The Summer 2013 edition of the Artilleryman came out in June. But I’ve had a busy June, July, and August. So better late than never, I guess!

Featured articles in this issue include:

  • Wiard Rifles – An accounting of orders for Norman Wiard’s steel field guns, by Steven W. Knott. We’ve looked at some of those recently here on my blog.
  • Norfolk Light Artillery Blues – A profile of a reenacting group which portrays a unit who’s history dates back to 1828. The unit is observing their 25th year on the reenacting circuit.
  • This month’s “What is it?” seeks information on a pair of 32-pdr shell guns of 45 cwt. Both are located in New Hampshire.
  • Ohio Artillery Show – report from the Mansfield, Ohio show. The displays included several original Civil War pieces.
  • Texas Twin Sisters – Mark Lardas offers the history behind two guns used in the Texas War of Independence. He offers some leads on locating these lost field pieces.
  • British Demi-Culverin – Some 17th century artillery for you. Gary Brown discusses the excavation and preservation of this rare cannon and it’s mounting at the Commissioner’s House at the Royal Navy Dockyard, in Bermuda.
  • Jomini and Napoleonic Artillery – An essay by Major Daniel S. Roper connecting Antoine Henri Domini to Napoleon’s use of artillery.
  • Photo report – An 18th century 6-pdr Armstrong gun at the gates of a refinery in Hong Kong.
  • Photo report – Rifled cannon match during the NSSA’s 127th National Competition showing an original 3.8-inch James Type II in action.

The book review section offers a twist. This month’s slate are reviews written in the 1890s about books published at that time. Interesting to see how contemporaries viewed what we consider “sources” today:

  • “A Course of Instruction in Ordnance and Gunnery, 2nd Edition.” by Captain Henry Metcalfe, 1891.
  • “A Textbook on Ordnance and Gunnery.” by Captain Lawrence L. Bruff, 1896.
  • “Handbook of Light Artillery,” by Alexander B. Dyer, 1896.

In the editor’s notes, Kathryn Jorgensen offers two pages of notes and news related to artillery.

You can’t get the Artilleryman at the news stand, only at the website:

In the April issue of Civil War Times: Find Stonewall Jackson’s Arm and Island No. 10

April-13-CWT-200The April issue of Civil War Times is out at the periodical sections of your local store. Several great articles by authors of note, to include Robert K. Krick, Harold Holzer, Sarah Richardson, Jamie Malanowski, fellow blogger Chris Mackowski, and yours truely.

Chris’s article considers the lingering question about Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson’s amputated arm, which may or may not still be buried at Ellwood Manor.

My article, also explores an artifact of the Civil War long buried – Island No. 10 on the Mississippi River. I discussed activities at Island No. 10 last year, here at To the Sound of the Guns, on the Civil War Monitor Blog, and for the Civil War Navy Sesquicentennial blog, around the 150th anniversary of that often overlooked campaign. For the Civil War Times article, I focused a bit more on the changes to the landscape around that battlefield to include the “movements” of the island with time. Dana Shoaf and the staff at the magazine deserve much credit translating some of my scribbled maps into coherent illustrations.

So you want to locate Island No. 10? Find out if Jackson’s arm is still buried in the Wilderness? Get a copy of the April edition of Civil War Times.

The Artilleryman Magazine Winter 2012 Issue

The Winter 2012 issue of the Artilleryman mailed out late last month. Featured articles include:

  • Report from the “Artillery Though the Ages: 400 Years of Artillery Development” held in April 2012 at Colonial National Historical Park, Yorktown, Virginia. The exhibition featured a wide array of artillery from colonial, early American, and the Civil War eras. Nearby Fort Eustis sent over a 75mm pack howitzer demonstration team representing the 20th century artillery.
  • An article and photos examining the USS Cairo exhibit at Vicksburg.
  • Making Civil War Events Authentic: Bringing Back Horse-Drawn Artillery” by Steve Cameron. An outstanding account of how author Steve Cameron provisioned authentic living-history artillery teams.
  • A good study of the “Oregon” gun, the companion to the infamous “Peacemaker” that exploded on the USS Princeton in 1844.
  • Trip report looking at the artillery collection at Spandau Citadel in Berlin, Germany.

Book reviews from Peter A. Frandsen include:

  • Civil War Rockets“, by Dr. Thomas Power Lowry.
  • US Field Artillery in World War II: 1941-45“, by Paul Gaujac.
  • U.S. Field Artillery of World War II“, by Steven Zaloga.
  • Des Cannons et des Hommes“, by Patrick Mercier. A French history of artillery.
  • Long Range Guns, Close Quarter Combat: The Third United States Artillery Regiment in the War of 1812“, by Dr. Richard V. Barbuto.
  • Ships and Guns: The Sea Ordnance in Venice and Europe Between the 15th and the 17th Centuries“, edited by Carlo Beltrame and Renato Ridella.

Only one page of editor’s notes and letters are included in the front of the issue. Also in this issue is the answer to the Fall issue’s “What is it?” question – it was a French 58mm No. 2 Trench Mortar.

One other notice worthy of mention – Robinson’s Battery of Battle Creek, Michigan is requesting donations to support their trip to Gettysburg in July.

The Artilleryman Magazine Fall 2012 Issue

The Fall 2012 edition of the Artilleryman is out this month. Featured articles include:

  • A look at six Brooke rifle projectiles recovered with the CSS Neuse which went through a conservation process.
  • The report from the 22nd Annual Grayling Match hosted by Loomis’ Battery up in Michigan. Lots of talk about real cannon firing!
  • An article detailing the Troup Artillery during the Antietam Campaign – particularly Crampton’s Gap and Harpers Ferry.
  • A study of an artillery fragment found in Antietam’s West Woods. Likely it came from a 12-pdr Napoleon of Lt. George Woodruff’s Battery I, 1st U.S. Artillery.
  • A look at a rare 3-inch Wiard Ordnance Rifle recently restored in Ripley, Ohio.

Non-Civil War related articles:

  • A couple of artillery identification requests. One photo is certainly a 58mm St. Etienne trench mortar from World War I. The other is a gunade, but of unknown origin.
  • A trip report reviewing artillery displayed on the island of Bermuda – 400 years of artillery.

Book reviews in this issue include:

  • “The Orleans Battery” Edited by Thomas Taber. Reviewed by Peter Frandsen. A history of the 17th N.Y. Battery.
  • “Artillery Hell: The Employment of Artillery at Antietam” by Curt Johnson and Richard Anderson, Jr. Also reviewed by Peter Frandsen.

Only one page of editor’s notes and letters are included in the front of the issue. Editor Kathryn Jorgensen provides a bit about “Lady Polk” from Columbus, Kentucky and some other bits.

Another issue with good reads from The Artilleryman.

The Artilleryman Magazine Summer 2012 Issue

Several good articles in the summer 2011 edition of the Artilleryman that arrived in my mailbox this week. Featured articles include:

  • A Confederate 6-pdr returns home to North Carolina. The Model 1841 gun is documented having served the Charlotte Artillery and captured by the 21st Massachusetts at New Bern in March 1862. It is now on display at the North Carolina Museum of History in Raleigh, on temporary loan.
  • A look at Helena, Arkansas replica cannons at reconstructed Fort Curtis.
  • A Confederate Mullane shell from the CSS Albemarle is now on display at Port O’ Plymouth Museum.
  • Brooke rifle expert Gordon “Andy” Thrasher recently identified a cannon muzzle fragment as a Brooke 6.4-inch rifle from the CS Naval Ordnance Work in Selma, Alabama. The gun was likely foundry number S-102.
  • Photos and background information about a 3-inch Ordnance rifle, registry number 194, verified as captured at Tom’s Brook in 1864.
  • A review of the Federal field artillery carriages of the Civil War era by Don Lutz.
  • A reprint of section from Rifled Field Pieces: A short Compilation of What is Known of the New Field Artillery of Europe, first published in 1862. Franck E. Taylor, 1st US Artillery, discussed the merits of rifled guns from his personal observations in the years leading up to the Civil War.
  • Trip report for the Museum of Military History, Budapest, Hungary, which displays artillery from the 16th through 20th centuries.
  • Report from the 24th Annual Artillery School at Old Fort Niagara, hosted by living historians from Reynold’s Battery L, 1st New York Light Artillery.
  • Another cannon only identified by fragments… Jim Bender coaxed the story of a 12-pdr Mountain Howitzer from the only surviving fragment – the trunnion and rimbase. The fragment came from a howitzer from Cyrus Alger in 1863. The howitzer burst in 1883 while being fired for a July 4th celebration.
  • Report about a 12-pdr Armstrong breechloading gun of 1881, now on display in Tasmania, Australia.

The book review, written by Joseph Bilby this month, covers A Strange Engine of War: The Winans Steam Gun and the Civil War in Maryland, by John W. Lamb. Developed before the Civil War, this weird, yet intriguing weapon was one of many early attempts to build a powered cannon. The gun ultimately proved impractical for the field.

Editor Kathryn Jorgensen provides two pages of news articles at the front of the issue. Highlights include a 32-pdr cannon now on display in the Museum of Mobile, which was salvaged from the CSS Alabama. The Battlefields in Motion site provides a virtual recreation of Fort Moultrie. Construction began at the site of West Point Foundry, in Cold Spring, New York, as that gun-making site is converted into an interpretive park.

If you don’t subscribe already, I recommend the Artilleryman for those interested in the “guns” of old.