Need heavy guns on the Potomac: Seacoast defenses for Washington

Even after all direct threats to Washington, D.C. abated with the end of the Gettysburg Campaign, at least one man in the capital city saw the need to improve defenses. On September 1, 1863, Brigadier-General John G. Barnard wrote to Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton: The works of Rozier’s Bluff, and near Jones’ PointContinue reading “Need heavy guns on the Potomac: Seacoast defenses for Washington”

Converted Rodman Rifles: Defending the coast in the time of lean budgets

Earlier this week, Keith Harris asked for a quick cannon identification via Twitter. Feel free to click over to Keith’s picture, but the gun below from Fort McHenry, Maryland is similar. The exterior shape of this gun should look familiar. It’s a 10-inch Rodman. But a close look at the bore reveals something decidedly non-standardContinue reading “Converted Rodman Rifles: Defending the coast in the time of lean budgets”

The Big Rodmans: 20-inch Rodmans, Part 2

In yesterday’s post on the 20-inch Rodman Gun, I’d mentioned the gun pictured below arrived at Fort Hamilton, New York for testing in the fall of 1864. Compared to the trials of the 15-inch gun, the 20-inch gun received a bit more fanfare – and full coverage in Harper’s Weekly. When first fired on OctoberContinue reading “The Big Rodmans: 20-inch Rodmans, Part 2”