By Rob Morgan
I suspect more American than European wargamers will know of this quarterly journal which frequently contains material of use in our own field. As well as regular articles on re-enactors and on ordnance sites across the USA and well beyond, there are some rare gems to be found in its pages.
In the new Spring 2015 issue (Vol 36, No.2), I discovered am interesting four-page illustrated note by Steve Cameron of Tennessee, dealing with live firing tests using a range of Civil War guns, canister shot and plywood targets. The project and the results make valuable reading — before you send your infantry across the cornfield! The same issue also contains a set of detailed orders for using field artillery in the Army of the Potomac in 1862, written by Colonel Henry Hunt, Chief of Artillery. Again some interesting insights into how to fight the guns.
In recent past issues, heavy coastal artillery, the guns of the Federal ironclad USS Cairo and the guns of “Old Fort Jackson” have been featured.
Incidentally, there’s a comment in the pages on an “Ames Howitzer” (?) used in a campaign which took place in Kansas in the mid-1850’s, between “free-staters” and pro-slavery forces. The city of Lawrence was sacked in one fight in May 1856, and this particular gun captured. The fighting must have been extensive since at the end of the summer there was an exchange of prisoners. Another of those many American brush-fire wars I’ve never heard of. It might be worth some thought though?