Disloyalty in the Ordnance Department? The case of William Maynadier

In the tense days of December 1860, Captain William Maynadier became a central figure in the correspondence concerning the disposition of military stores.  Maynadier, a West Point graduate of 1827, was at that time the assistant to the Chief of Ordnance, Colonel Henry K. Craig.  Maynadier had served in that capacity since 1842.   InContinue reading “Disloyalty in the Ordnance Department? The case of William Maynadier”

How do you elevate an seven-ton columbiad?

So you have one of those 15,000 pound 10-inch columbiads or 9,000 pound 8-inch columbiads mounted (which was no small feat to begin with).  The enemy fleet is threatening to sail up the channel.  How the heck to you point that big gun on the target? The Bellona 8-inch Columbiad at Fort Darling is aContinue reading “How do you elevate an seven-ton columbiad?”

Casting Tests: More Experimental 6-pdr Guns

Turning again to the chart of experimental 6-pdrs of the 1830s and 1840s: The last two lines on the chart are two batches of trials and experimental iron guns from Cyrus Alger in Boston, Massachusetts.  While technically not “field guns” these two batches offer a glimpse of the Ordnance Department’s attempts to determine the bestContinue reading “Casting Tests: More Experimental 6-pdr Guns”