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Bishop, J. Leander (John Leander), 1820-1868 / A history of American manufactures from 1608 to 1860 : exhibiting the origin and growth of the principal mechanic arts and manufactures, from the earliest colonial period to the adoption of the Constitution ; and comprising annals of the industry of the United States in machinery, manufactures and useful arts, with a notice of the important inventions, tariffs, and the results of each decennial census
Volume 3 (1868)

The great iron works of the United States,   pp. 475-495


Page 486

GREAT IRON WORKS IN THE UNITED STATES.
The position of the West Point Foundry at Cold Spring was deter-
mined by two considerations; one, the desire of the Government, at
that time, that a Gun foundry should not be too near the coast, and the
other, to obtain water power from a stream entering the Hudson at
Cold Spring. This, though quite insufficient for the power now re-
quired, is still useful in the boring of Guns. Cold Spring having, at
the commencement of the Foundry, consisted of only a small landing-
place of three houses, and West Point being the only well-known place
in the vicinity (although on the opposite side of the river), the name
of West Point Foundry was given to the new establishment.
Mr. Gouverneur Kemble, the original proprietor, still lives to enjoy
the vigorous growth of the Foundry and of the Village, which may
almost be said to have been founded with it, as well as to receive the
tribute of universal regard for a conspicuous display of qualities com-
manding respect throughout a long succession of years.
This Foundry has recently been brought prominently into notice in
connection with the manufacture of RIFLED CANNON, a subject which
has been much discussed since the Crimean war, although such cannon
were not used successfully at that time. Numerous experiments in
their manufacture have been made in Europe, and in 1858 and 1859
many trials of Rifled Cannon were made in this country, chiefly with
Guns ordered by the Ordnance Department, according to plans devised
and brought forward by different inventors. The Cannon were the
usual Cast-iron Guns, bored somewhat smaller and rifled. A projec-
tile frequently used at that time was that of Dr. J. B. Read, of Ala-
bama, in which a cup or flange of wrought-iron is cast in the projectile,
and it was expected that the force of the powder would cause the rim
of this cup to take the grooves. Better forms of projectiles have since
been devised, althogh this was made to work moderately well in small
Guns, owing in some degree to an improvement made by Mr. Parrott
of swaging out the cup partially to the form of the grooves, and thus
facilitating the " taking" of them by the projectile.
In 1860, Mr. Parrott introduced the first of the Guns now known as
"Parrott Guns."  It was the smallest size of bore, and called the ten
pounder, and this Gun has since been increased from two and nine
tenth inches to three inches bore, and is called the three-inch Gun.
The principles upon which it was constructed have been observed in
all, so that the same system has prevailed throughout. One peculiarity
of the Parrott Gun is the band or reinforce of wrought-iron, made by
coiling a bar of iron upon a mandril, and then welding this coil into a
cylinder, which is afterward bored and turned and shrunk upon the
Gun. The manner of attaching the band to the Gun is another
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