Museum Special Exhibit Online - May 2010
Civil War Collection report by Pouya J.
The 12-Pound Napoleon was developed in France in the 1850s for Emperor Napoleon III. It fired shot, shell, case shot, and canister, and it maneuverable and effective at long and short range. At the start of the war only a few were in use, but by mid-1863 nearly 40 percent of all the field artillery pieces in each army were Napoleons.The 12-pound shot was 4.5 inches in diameter and the tube was 66 inches long, weighed 1227 lbs., and the bore was 4.62 inches. The powder charge was 2.5 lbs and the range at a 5 degree elevation was 1619 yards. (One mile equals 1760 yards.) Over 1,100 such Napoleons were manufactured by the North, and 600 by the South. It was the last cast bronze gun used by an American army.
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