Smith's New York Battery

Smith's New York Battery (HM8MG)

Location: Gettysburg, PA 17325 Adams County
Country: United States of America

N 39° 47.535', W 77° 14.556'

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Inscription

— July 2 1863 - Second Day —

"For God's sake, men, don't let them take my guns away from me!"
Capt. James E. Smith, U.S.A.
Commander, 4th New York Battery

On July 2, Capt. James E. Smith hauled four of the six cannon of his 4th New York Battery onto this craggy ridge, positioning them along the crest behind you. The cannon were 10-pounder Parrotts - rifled guns with a three-inch bore and a range of up to 2 miles.

At about 3:30 p.m., Confederate cannon about a mile in front of you began pounding this position, and Smith's guns thundered in reply. Within an hour, long lines of Confederate infantry began advancing in this direction, and Smith tried to cripple them with rounds of case shot and shell. So destructive was the fire that advancing Confederates believed they were facing twice the number of cannon. But the men in gray could not be stopped.

When the Confederates came within 300 yards, Smith ordered the ammunition changed to canister. However, the Confederates found cover behind a stone wall at the base of the field below you where their deadly rifle fire threatened the gun crews. Smith pleaded with the supporting infantry to save his guns, but after a long struggle the Confederates captured three of them when they seized the ridge.

Artillery Projectiles
Solid Shot

Solid iron. Used at longer ranges against massed troops, fortifications, and other batteries. Also to fell timber on enemy soldiers in the woods.

Case Shot
Iron shell filled with musket balls sealed in rosin or molten sulphur. Powder charge in core ignited by fuse. Designed to explode before impact. Also called "shrapnel."

Shell
Cast-iron shell filled with black powder. Time fuse ignited by cannon's discharge. Shell exploded into fragments that could kill or maim.

Canister
Tin can filled with iron balls packed in sawdust. Used at close range - 400 yards or less - against infantry. Double or triple canister could be used in a crisis.
Details
HM NumberHM8MG
Tags
Placed ByGettysburg National Military Park
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, October 6th, 2014 at 5:21am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 307984 N 4407105
Decimal Degrees39.79225000, -77.24260000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 47.535', W 77° 14.556'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 47' 32.10" N, 77° 14' 33.36" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)717
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 331 Sickles Ave, Gettysburg PA 17325, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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