This 6.4-inch Brooke rifled canon represents one of the greatest sources of pride for the Confederacy. Named for its inventor, John Mercer Brooke, this type of gun was renowned for its superior range, accuracy and reliability over its smoothbore counterparts. Because of their effectiveness, Brooke's guns were mounted inside many southern fortifications and were also used on board many Confederate warships.
This example was cast at Richmond's famous Tredegar Iron Works in July 1862, and was mounted within the James River defenses near Drewry's Bluff. There it successfully guarded the river approaches to Richmond. It was capable of firing an 80-pound solid projectile more than four miles.
John Mercer Brooke
The gun's designer, John Mercer Brooke, was an inventor and Chief of Confederate Naval Ordnance. Brooke assisted in developing many of the South's unique weapons, including submarines and torpedoes, and was instrumental in the design of the famous ironclad C.S.S. Virginia. He also prepared the first railroad-mounted artillery that was used at the Battle of Savage's Station.