Discussion Reading markings on cannons.

csacannon

Cadet
Joined
May 23, 2021
Location
Occupied Va
I noticed your old discussion about cannon markings, and I wondered if anyone might have more info about the guns produced by M.Greenwood. There once was a great deal of information on the web about their cannon production, but it has all been taken down and the sites are gone. I am really interested in the 1861 James rifle model that looked much like the model 1841 six pounder. I remember reading that some were pressed into service as smooth-bore artillery while waiting to be rifled. I would like to find more about that run of tubes produced by M. Greenwood.
Any help would be most appreciated...
 

drezac

Sergeant
Forum Host
Joined
May 4, 2014
Location
Baltimore,Ohio
@csacannon - unfortunately, there is very little information available regarding Greenwood's production. I have been in contact with the curator of the Cincinnati museum. Their collection contains very little information regarding Greenwood. They are not sure what happened to the records from Greenwood's foundry. From what I have seen, Greenwood primarily produced 12-pdr's for the Federal government. Production for individual states included both 12-pdr's and 6-pdr's. It is documented that Greenwood produced complete batteries - guns, carriages, limbers, caissons. A fire started by Confederate sympathizers from Kentucky caused a large amount of damage to his foundry ( reported to be about $100,000 - today's dollars that would be over a million dollars). It crippled his manufacturing capacity. In 1864, Ohio ordered 24 guns - 12 6-pdr and 12 12-pdr guns. It appears he could only produce the guns and not the carriages, limbers and caissons. The purchase of the carriages, limbers and caissons was quickly negotiated by telegram on an emergency basis and not put out on bid, suggesting that Greenwood was originally to provide these.

As far as the James Rifles, the could have been converted at a later date or delivered rifled from Greenwood. Existing 1841 6-pdrs were sent back to the manufacturer or to an arsenal to be rifled. In the case of existing orders that had not yet been delivered, contracts were modified to include the rifling. Without some type of documentation, It would be hard to tell if a gun was rifled before or after delivery.
 

major bill

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Joined
Aug 25, 2012
I noticed your old discussion about cannon markings, and I wondered if anyone might have more info about the guns produced by M.Greenwood. There once was a great deal of information on the web about their cannon production, but it has all been taken down and the sites are gone. I am really interested in the 1861 James rifle model that looked much like the model 1841 six pounder. I remember reading that some were pressed into service as smooth-bore artillery while waiting to be rifled. I would like to find more about that run of tubes produced by M. Greenwood.
Any help would be most appreciated...

I have Emailed Kenneth Baumann, who is knowledgeable about Civil War era cannons, and am expecting some information from him in the next day or so. We will have to see what he has to say.
 

Rhea Cole

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 2, 2019
Location
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
The Army had marking standards for the 1840's and 1861. Here is an Ames 6-pdr M1838 number 55, 689 pounds, inspector: JWR.
These things have markings everywere. Just to add insult to injury, WPF used roman numerals as foundry numbers for a long time.

View attachment 366467

View attachment 366468
You want to look in the muzzle. The 14 pound Model #1 Ames Rifle was externally the same as an 1841 model 6 pounder. Also, the 1841’s were rebored & rifled for the Ames projectile. The Chicago Board of Trade Battery had Ames rifles at Stones River.
 
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