“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near New Kent in New Kent County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

French Cannon at Cumberland Landing

French Cannon at Cumberland Landing Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, August 20, 2017
1. French Cannon at Cumberland Landing Marker
Inscription.  Gilbert Chase, a New England ship captain, recovered a bronze French cannon in the Pamunkey River off Cumberland Town in 1816. Two members of his crew descended in a diving bell patented in 1806, which Chase had acquired the rights to use. The 12-foot-long, 5,240-pound cannon, lost during the Revolutionary War, was decorated with mottoes and coats of arms. Virginia claimed it as state property, but Chase argued that the patent authorized him to keep what he salvaged and that the state had forfeited its rights by abandoning the cannon. In Nicholas v. Chase (1817), Virginia Superior Court of Chancery ruled in favor of Chase. The cannon was likely melted down during the Civil War.
Erected 2016 by Department of Historic Resources. (Marker Number WO-22.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Revolutionary. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Department of Historic Resources series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1816.
Location. 37° 32.171′ N, 76° 58.774′ W. Marker is near New Kent
Paid Advertisement
Click on the ad for more information.
Please report objectionable advertising to the Editor.
Click or scan to see
this page online
, Virginia, in New Kent County. Marker is on Cumberland Road (County Route 637) 1½ miles north of New Kent Highway (Virginia Route 249), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: New Kent VA 23124, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. McClellan’s Camp at Cumberland Landing (here, next to this marker); Cumberland Town (a few steps from this marker); Samuel Wilson Crump (1919-1995) (approx. 1.3 miles away); John Parke Custis / Martha Dandridge (approx. 1.3 miles away); Confederate Memorial (approx. 1.3 miles away); Martha Washington's Birthplace (approx. 1.3 miles away); James Lafayette (approx. 1.3 miles away); New Kent Courthouse (approx. 1.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New Kent.
Also see . . .  Nicholas v Chase & the Diving Bell of Richard Tripe. “The case of Nicholas v. Chase was certainly a historic case if not a precedential one. This was one of the first recorded salvage case in the United States outside of the admiralty court. Although the cannon was arrested by a federal marshal, Virginia chose to litigate in their own Superior Court of Chancery.”

“The court ruled that that the cannon was never the property of the state. Evidence had been submitted that the cannon at the State Armory were cannon imported on the French ship and were clearly property o f the state. Apparently the court determined
Cumberland Town and French Cannon at Cumberland Landing Markers image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, August 20, 2017
2. Cumberland Town and French Cannon at Cumberland Landing Markers
that while the cannon were on board the sloop, they were still property of France. Since the subject cannon was never landed onto Virginia soil, Virginia never took title. The cannon were not delivered according to a contract but were a gift from France. This gift could have been recalled at anytime before delivery. It can easily be inferred now that the cannon on the bottom of the Pamunkey either still belonged to France or was considered abandoned and belonged to no one, even though it lay partially embedded in the submerged lands of the Commonwealth of Virginia for thirty-six years.” (Submitted on August 23, 2017.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 23, 2017. It was originally submitted on August 23, 2017, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 335 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on August 23, 2017, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.

Share this page.  
Share on Tumblr

CeraNet Cloud Computing sponsors the Historical Marker Database.
U.S. FTC REQUIRED NOTICE: This website earns income from purchases you make after using links to Thank you.
Paid Advertisements
Mar. 3, 2024