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Dover in Stewart County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

With Admirable Precision

 
 
With Admirable Precision Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 4, 2010
1. With Admirable Precision Marker
Inscription. This is the smallest of the two river batteries built by Confederates in 1861 to protect the Cumberland River, a strategic transportation and supply route to Clarksville and Nashville. Semicircular in design and set some 30 feet above the river, the battery mounted one 6.5-inch rifled cannon and two 32-pounder ship carronades, all protected by sandbags and a strong parapet. The battery was manned by the Maury Light Artillery Battery commanded by Capt. Reuben R. Ross. Portions of Captain Ross's command were also assigned to serve the 10-inch Columbiad in the nearby Lower River Battery. Though inexperienced in handling heavy artillery, Ross's gunners were praised for exhibiting "admirable precision" against the Union ironclads on February 14, 1862. the collapsed remains of the powder magazine used by the Confederates to store ammunition for the cannon during the battle can be seen in the hillside behind you.

(Illustration caption):
Upper River Battery after Union occupation. From a sketch by Henri Lovie, Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, March 15, 1862.

(Notations from left to right):
- Lower River Battery
-32-pounder ship Carronade
- 4 Ironclad Gunboats 350-yards away (closest position). (To silhouettes) 1½ miles away.
- 6.5-inch rifled cannon This gun was capable of firing
Close Up of the Illustration image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 4, 2010
2. Close Up of the Illustration
explosive shells long distances with a high degree of accuracy. Though out of action part of the time, it helped repel the Union gunboats.
- 32-pounder ship Carronade These short range cannon caused little or no damage to the Union gunboats. Confederate officers considered them "entirely useless" in this location.
 
Erected by Fort Donelson National Battlefield - National Park Service - Department of the Interior.
 
Location. 36° 29.658′ N, 87° 51.295′ W. Marker is in Dover, Tennessee, in Stewart County. Marker is on Lock D Loop, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Located at stop 4, the river batteries, on the driving tour of Fort Donelson National Battlefield. Marker is in this post office area: Dover TN 37058, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Upper Water Battery (a few steps from this marker); Powder Magazine (within shouting distance of this marker); Gun Positions (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The River Batteries (about 300 feet away); Foote's Gunboat Flotilla (about 400 feet away); Exchanging Iron Valentines
Marker with Reproduction Carronade image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 4, 2010
3. Marker with Reproduction Carronade
(about 400 feet away); Control the Rivers and Railroads (about 400 feet away); Reconstructed Powder Magazine (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dover.
 
Also see . . .  Fort Donelson. National Park Service site. (Submitted on November 20, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
With Admirable Precision Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, March 20, 2009
4. With Admirable Precision Marker
Looking up the Cumberland River from the marker
Reproduction Columbiad image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 4, 2010
5. Reproduction Columbiad
This reproduction Columbiad, of a form similar to the Rodman Guns produced in the war. The 6.5-inch gun used at Fort Donelson may have been rifled version of the 8-inch Columbiad produced by Confederate gun-makers early in the war. If so, the weapon looked very similar to this reproduction.
Reproduction 32-pdr Carronade image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, September 4, 2010
6. Reproduction 32-pdr Carronade
The carronade dates to the later stages of the Revolutionary War. A British innovation, this short cannon fired a solid shot at high angle to crash down upon the decks of wooden ships. Effective at close range, carronades became obsolete as more powerful cannon extended engagement ranges at sea. However many remained at the various navy yards at the outbreak of the Civil War and were impressed into service.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 20, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 627 times since then and 39 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on November 20, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   4. submitted on July 28, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee.   5, 6. submitted on November 20, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.
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