Introduction Native Americans long dominated the vastness of the American West. Linked culturally and geographically by trade, travel, and warfare, various indigenous groups controlled most of the continent west of the Mississippi River deep into the nineteenth century. Spanish, French, British, and later American traders had integrated themselves into many regional economies, and American emigrants pushed ever westward, but no imperial power had yet achieved anything approximating political or military control over the great bulk of the continent.
Left, a British pounder, circaillustrating the different parts. Right, a cut-away view of the same gun. For those who like technical terms, the rearmost protrusion is called a "Cascabel," used for attaching ropes to hoist the gun in transit. The barrel, as we would call it, was known as the "Chase.
For obvious I hope reasons, guns were "preponderated," meaning that the breech area around the powder chamber contained much more metal than the rest of the gun. This also helped in aiming, as it caused the gun to sit more solidly on the quoins used for elevation.
The main field pieces in the war were the 3-pound galloper and the steady 6-pound field piece. The American organization of artillery forces followed the European pattern. Except for the light infantry accompanying guns, the establishment was entirely fluid and determined by the requirements of a particular campaign.
The "Batallion Guns," which were more or less permanently attached to the infantry, were based on an idea of Frederick the Great, though instead of being hand-drawn they were modified into horse-drawn "galloper guns," three and four-pounders drawn by two horses in tandem.
Left foreground, an American 4-pounder galloper.
Gallopers were among the first attempts to give some degree of mobility to guns, which had been, for centuries, a stationary weapon. The "improvement" looked better on paper than in the real world. The term "galloper" evokes images of a lightning descent onto the battlefield, a Thesis on spanish american war volley of decisive effect, and a rapid gallop off to some other threatened point, but alas, the reality was somewhat different, since although the gun was rapidly portable, gun crews were still afoot, and the ammunition trundled along behind in ox-carts.
Once mounted, almost always on a fixed base as the block of wood shown below it may be pointed quickly to any quarter. But the swivel mechanism cannot stand heavy recoil, so the size, and hence effectiveness, of a swivel gun is severely limited. The smallest standard cannon was the two-pounder, and the largest was the fifty-pounder.
The range of projectile design was probably more diverse in the 18th century than it is today. The standard was, as you probably already guessed, the cannonball. This was simply a cast-iron sphere.
High school physics tells us its effectiveness derived from its mass times its velocity. And the greater the range, the less the effectiveness, except for rolling and bouncing haphazardly enough that enemy personnel would be doing a jig to avoid it.
In "Private Yankee Doodle", Joseph Plumb Martin relates a story of American soldiers running across a muddy parade ground to retrieve British cannonballs when their own gunners were short on ammunition, with a ration of rum as the reward for each ball.
The first known attempt at using "shells," or hollow projectiles filled with explosives, dates from the late 16th century. In theory, when the shell struck the target, the powder inside would be thrown about sufficiently to generate friction against the inside of the shell, in turn generating heat and thereby igniting.
In practice, sufficient friction inside the shell occurred as the shell traveled down the barrel to produce ignition before the shell even left the gun.
A bomb or shell. On the right is a cut-away view. Just as "buck and ball" loads were used with rifles and muskets, multiple projectile types were used with artillery. In the 15th century "Langridge" - loose metal and stones was often loaded over a wad to give a shotgun effect, and in the or so years before the Revolution, this practice evolved into the two basic groups of scatter projectiles, "case" shot and "grape" shot.
The cylinder was affixed to a sabot from the French word for a wooden shoe - a thrust-transmitting carrier that prevented the escape of gas ahead of the container. When fired, the outer cylinder was shredded by the shock of the explosion and its shards, along with the balls, were ejected from the muzzle in an expanding cone pattern which had a lethal range of two or three hundred yards.
The container for grape was usually a canvas bag containing lead or iron balls half again as big as musket balls. In order to make such an unwieldy container easier for the gun crew to handle and load, it usually had a wooden base with a center rod extending perpendicularly from it, around which bullets were stacked, and a length of cord would be lashed around it in order to pull the bundle into a manageable shape.
The resulting appearance, like a bunch of grapes, gave the type of ammunition its name. Grape shot ready for loading. Grape and case used together could create a kill zone of roughly yards, but beyond that enemy troops were fairly safe, except perhaps for the odd projectile striking a soldier or two at such extreme range.
In order to save using shells, some odd types of projectile were tried in the hopes of reaping a better harvest. On leaving the muzzle the projectile would fly in differing directions until the chain pulled taut, and then the projectile would rotate around its center of mass.
Chain was most generally used in naval warfare, since it was perfect for carrying away masts and rigging, but it was also used on land, where its effect on the legs of horses or a massed line of men, was quite effective. Two cannonballs, or sometimes two cylinders were attached to one another by a metal bar one or two feet long.
Bar shot, also often called "angels" for their appearance in flight. A type of bar shot called "sliding shot," as the central connecting bars would slide away from each other, thus expanding the ordnance lengthwise after leaving the gun.attheheels.com has been an NCCRS member since October The mission of attheheels.com is to make education accessible to everyone, everywhere.
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Courses consist of engaging, bite-sized. I. Introduction. Native Americans long dominated the vastness of the American West. Linked culturally and geographically by trade, travel, and warfare, various indigenous groups controlled most of the continent west of the Mississippi River deep into the nineteenth century.
American imperialism is a policy aimed at extending the political, economic, and cultural control of the United States government over areas beyond its boundaries. It can be accomplished in any number of ways: by military conquest, by treaty, by subsidization, by economic penetration through private companies followed by intervention when those interests are threatened, or by regime change.
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The Spanish-American War was the brief conflict that the United States waged against Spain in The war had grown out of the Cuban struggle for independence, and whose other causes included American imperialism and the sinking of the U.S warship Maine. Anti-Americanism (also called Anti-American sentiment, and Americanophobia) is a sentiment that espouses a dislike of or opposition to the American government or its policies, especially in regards to its foreign policy, or to Americans in general..
Political scientist Brendon O'Connor of the United States Studies Centre suggests that "anti-Americanism" cannot be isolated as a consistent.