Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 223: Civil War Phoenix 1855 Griffen 6-Pounder Cannon with Carriage

Auction Date: September 10, 2021

Rare Documented Civil War Era 1861 Dated Phoenix Iron Co. Model 1855 Griffen 6-Pounder Wrought-Iron Cannon with Carriage

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $40,000 - $60,000

Rare Documented Civil War Era 1861 Dated Phoenix Iron Co. Model 1855 Griffen 6-Pounder Wrought-Iron Cannon with Carriage

Manufacturer: None
Model: None
Type: Other
Gauge:
Barrel:
Finish:
Grip:
Stock:
Item Views: 1057
Item Interest: Very Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 172
Class: Other
Description:

This is a rare example of a Civil War era 1861 dated Phoenix Iron Co. wrought-iron 6-pounder field gun, and one of approximately 18 manufactured in total with 13 reported surviving examples. The trunnions are marked "PATENTED/DEC. 25, 1855" (right) and "PHOENIX/1861/1030 Lbs" (left). The patent date is in reference to "Improved Manufacture of Wrought-Iron Cannon" patent number 13,984 by inventor James Griffen of Safe Harbor, Pennsylvania. Griffen’s method of manufacture used wrought iron rods bundled and heat-welded together before drilling out the bore. Griffen guns are described on pages 46-47 of the book “Field Artillery Weapons of the Civil War” by James Hazlett, Edwin Olmstead, and M. Hume Parks, with this exact example photographed at the top of page 47. Pages 259-260 of the aforementioned book has a list of other observed surviving examples, with most residing within national historic sites/military parks. The consignor states this example is serial number 13. The serial number should be located on the base of the breech to the right of the knob, but is not currently visible underneath the thick layer of applied paint. Includes carriage.

Rating Definition:

Very good with layers of applied paint, areas of mild corrosion, numerous scattered paint chips, and a sturdy carriage.



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