Heavy Ordnance Found Aboard the CSS Neuse

32-Pound Bolt

32-lb. Wrought
Iron Bolt
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 12.0"
Number Recovered: 2

32-Pound Read Shell

32-lb. Read Shell
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 13.5"
Number Recovered: 3

32-Pound Brooke Bolt

32-lb. Brooke Bolt
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 12.5"
Number Recovered: 1

Canister Stand

Canister Stand
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 8.0"
Number Recovered:
9 complete stands,
362 individual shot

32-Pound Brooke Shell

32-lb. Brooke Shell
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 13.5"
Number Recovered: 36

32-Pound Mullane Shell

32-lb. Mullane Shell
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 13.5"
Number Recovered: 1

Stand of Grape

Stand of Grape
Diameter: 6.4"
Height: 8.5"
Shot Diameter: 3"
Number Recovered: 13

These projectiles are examples of approximately 15,000 artifacts that were recovered from the Neuse during excavation in the early 1960s. These rounds would have been fired from the two 6.4" Brooke rifles that were housed in the gunboat's casemate. The materials, having been submersed in the muddy Neuse River for 100 years, were in a remarkable state of preservation.

While archaeological provenance was not recorded during the unscientific salvage operation, the artifact collection provides an enlightening example of the types of materials used to equip and operate a Confederate ironclad warship during the Civil War.

The Neuse collection is one of the largest in existence for a Confederate naval vessel.

All images © North Carolina Office of Archives & History


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