These two remarkably well preserved iron cannon are British naval six pounders. They are of the 1764 regulation and were designated for sea service. They were designed by Sir Charles Frederick, the surveyor of ordinance under George III, whose royal crest appears on both barrels. All of the original markings have been preserved giving us a fascinating glimpse at the historical background of these period weapons.
The letter "z" and numerical markings on the trunnion faces designate that these cannon were cast by George Mathews of Shropshire, England sometime around 1775. Both were re-proofed in 1780 putting them in service prior to that year. It is almost a certainty that, when new, they were used against the continental navy during the American Revolution.
Both cannon also wear the admiralty broad arrow markings applied when the pieces were test fired. Of note is the broad arrow showing on the second cannon's caseball. This designates it was test fired in the Caribbean, where both pieces spent time on the bottom before being salvaged.
The weight of both cannon, 16 and 16 ½ cwt. (1,637 and 1,701 lbs. Respectively) is designated by the five digit markings just forward of the torchole. Both were also fitted with naval gun locks, the traces of which are the two holes running transversely through the vent pan.
These pieces are in outstanding condition for iron cannon of this vintage. The modern carriages were very well made within the past 25 years using 1/4" thick iron banding. For the past 21 years these massive cannon have graced the second story balcony of a most unique "Robinson Caruso" style residence in Echo Park, California.
first name :