1857 US NAVY YARD WASHINGTON MARKED 10-INCH SHOT/SHELL GAUGE

$695.00

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Item Code: 490-6808

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This is a nice pre-Civil War US Navy shot or shell gauge dated 1857. The wood handle is missing, but iron tang and ring are intact, showing dark, with some light pitting, but good markings on the base of the ring:  “X in. 9.93 Low GAUGE 1857” and  “ORD. DEPT. / U.S.N.Y.W. / J.A.D.” The stamping on one side seems to have three letters removed- likely correcting the placement of the inspector’s initials. The “Low” on the gauge ring refers to the “windage” allowed by the ring for the round, i.e. the difference between bore diameter of the barrel and actual diameter of the round.

These shell gauges allowed for a quick inspection and separation of rounds by size, something especially necessary given the large stockpiles of shot and shell evident in photographs or ordnance yards, and of rather critical importance to a gun crew.    [SR][ph:L]

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