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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
New London in New London County, Connecticut — The American Northeast (New England)
 

“Aim, Load, Fire”

 
 
“Aim, Load, Fire” Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
1. “Aim, Load, Fire” Marker
Inscription.
This scene features a replica 32-pound cannon that would have been employed here during the 1850s and 1860s. Thirty-two pound refers to the weight of the cannonballs used in this weapon. The soldiers are in the process of sponging the bore, or cleaning the cannon barrel, and are getting ready to load a cannonball.

To fire the cannon, a seven-man gun crew (five shown in the scene) engages in a sequence of intricate and precise movements. In fewer than 20 seconds, the crew sponges the bore, inserts the powder bag, loads the cannonball, rams it home, cuts the fuse, aims, shoves a slender pick through the vent into the powder bag, and hooks a friction primer to the lanyard, which ignites the fuse when pulled. At the gunnerís command of “Fire,” the crew tugs the lanyard and fires the piece, sending the cannonball nearly a mile to the target. Before the smoke clears, the crew pushes the cannon back into loading position, the gunner cries, “Load,” and the sequence begins again.
 
Erected by Fort Trumbull State Park.
 
Location. 41° 20.615′ N, 72° 5.595′ W. Marker is in New London, Connecticut, in New London County. Marker can be reached from East Street, on the left when traveling
“Aim, Load, Fire” Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
2. “Aim, Load, Fire” Marker
south. Touch for map. Marker is located inside the fort at Fort Trumbull State Park. Marker is in this post office area: New London CT 06320, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Post Civil War to 1910 (here, next to this marker); Coast Guard (here, next to this marker); Civil War (here, next to this marker); Scientific Research (a few steps from this marker); The Third System (a few steps from this marker); Merchant Marine (a few steps from this marker); War of 1812 (a few steps from this marker); American Revolution (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New London.
 
More about this marker. A picture of the nearby statue of a cannon crew is on the lower left of the marker. It has a caption of “The soldiers on the left are cleaning the barrel with a sponge, while the sturdy soldier with his back to us is getting ready to load the ball. The soldier behind the cannon is readying the rammer, which will be used to plunge the ball into the cannon. The sergeant stationed at the rear of the cannon is barking commands while covering the vent hole with his hand.”
A map of Fort Trumbull at the lower right has the caption “This map, dating from 1874, shows the range and overlapping
Marker in Fort Trumbull image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
3. Marker in Fort Trumbull
The tripod to the left of the marker is used to move cannons in the fort.
areas of fire for the cannons at Fort Trumbull and at the Fort Griswold battery, located across the river in Groton.”
 
Also see . . .  History of Fort Trumbull. Friends of Fort Trumbull. (Submitted on October 16, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesMilitary
 
Fort Trumbull Cannon Crew Statue image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
4. Fort Trumbull Cannon Crew Statue
Marker and Cannon Crew in the Casemate image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
5. Marker and Cannon Crew in the Casemate
Cannon Crew image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
6. Cannon Crew
Members of the cannon crew are seen here sponging the cannon while another stands ready to load the cannonball.
Cannon Crew image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
7. Cannon Crew
The sergeant aiming the cannon and the soldier with the rammer can be seen in this photo.
Sponging the Cannon Barrel image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
8. Sponging the Cannon Barrel
Sergeant in Command image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 9, 2011
9. Sergeant in Command
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 16, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 402 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. submitted on October 16, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.
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