Atlanta in Fulton County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
Civil War Siege Cannon
The Union Army used this cannon during the American Civil War, which was fought between 1861 and 1865. Called a siege cannon, it was too big and heavy to be used in most battles. Instead, it was used during sieges, which were lengthy assaults used to capture fortified cities or seaports.
This particular type of siege cannon is called a Parrott Rifle. It was invented in 1860 by a former U.S. Army captain named Robert Parker Parrott, who designed a series of spiral grooves, called riffling, inside the iron barrel, or bore. The riffling made the cannon fire much farther and more accurately than previous bronze cannons that had smooth bores. As a result, this rifled barrel could hit a target almost two miles away. This is one reason more people were killed in the Civil War than in any other war in American history.
Rifled cannons used different types of projectiles: solid shot cannon balls for knocking down brick walls and fortifications; shells with time fuses for making explosions; or case shot, which contained dozens of small iron balls. These balls flew through the air like bullets, killing any soldier in their path.
4.2-inch (30-pounder) Army Parrott Rifle, Model of 1861
Manufacturer: West Point Foundry, Cold Springs, New York
Date of manufacture: 1862
Materials: Cast iron with wrought iron breech band
Range: Approximately 2,500 yards
The Union Army used these guns in the sieges of Savannah, Charleston, Vicksburg, Mobile, Richmond, Petersburg, and many other places. It is not known where this particular gun was used.
Gun Crews of Company H, 3rd Massachusetts Heavy Artillery at Fort Lincoln - Defenses of Washington, District of Columbia, 1865
Erected by Atlanta History Center.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil.
Location. 33° 50.548′ N, 84° 23.195′ W. Marker is in Atlanta, Georgia, in Fulton County. Marker can be reached from West Paces Ferry Road NW west of Slaton Drive NW, on the left when traveling west. Located at the Atlanta History Center. Touch for map Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Gov. John M. Slaton (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Swan House (approx. 0.2 miles away); “The Storyteller” (approx. half a mile away); Ward's Div. Encamped (approx. half a mile away); 20th A.C.; Pace's Fy. Rd. (approx. 0.6 miles away); 4th A.C. at Buckhead (approx. 0.6 miles away); Sardis Methodist Church (approx. one mile away); Peach Tree Creek Crossing (approx. 1.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Atlanta.
Also see . . . Atlanta History Center. (Submitted on September 6, 2015.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on September 5, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 343 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on September 5, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.