Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   www.SilverHawkAuthor.com   
 
Artillery preserved in Canada 9b: Nova Scotia, City of Halifax

Artillery preserved in Canada: Nova Scotia

City of Halifax

Data current to 7 May 2018.

The aim of this website is to locate, identify and document every historical piece of artillery preserved in Canada.  Many contributors have assisted in the hunt for these guns to provide and update the data found on these web pages.  Photos are by the author unless otherwise credited.  Any errors found here are by the author, and any additions, corrections or amendments to this list of Guns and Artillery in Canada would be most welcome and may be e-mailed to the author at hskaarup@rogers.com.

For all official data concerning the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery, please click on the link to their website:

Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery Website

Note: Back in the day, artillery in Canada was referred to by its radio call sign "Sheldrake".  It is now referred to by its "Golf" call sign.  (Acorn sends)

The web page for Nova Scotia has become too big for all the guns to be listed on one page, therefore the guns on display within Annapolis Royal including Fort Anne, the City of Halifax including York Redoubt, the Fort George Citadel, the Maritime Command Museum and Royal Artillery Park etc., are listed on separate pages for Nova Scotia.

Halifax, 1st (Halifax-Dartmouth) Field Artillery Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery

The 1st (Halifax-Dartmouth) Field Artillery Regiment, RCA, is a Primary Reserve Royal Canadian Artillery (RCA) regiment.  It is located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, at 73 Hobson Lake Drive near Bayer's Lake.  The unit consists of two batteries, the 51st Field Battery in Halifax and the 84th Independent Field Battery located in Yarmouth.

25-pounder C Mk. 2 QF Field Gun, inside the Armoury.

Limber for the 25-pounder C Mk. 2 QF Field Gun, inside the Armoury.

105-mm C1A1 M2A2 Howitzer, on display in front of the Armoury.

9-inch 12-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, one of the four recovered from the trench in front of the Halifax Armoury in 2011.  This gun is on display in front of the Armoury.

Halifax, Royal Artillery Park - Listed on a separate web page.

Halifax, Fort George, Halifax Citadel - Listed on a separate page

Halifax, Province House

HMS Shannon commencing battle with the USS Chesapeake.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 2836436)

Blomefield Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight corroded, under the cascabel, The Carron Company of Falkirk, Scotland (Serial No. corroded, CARRON, 1807) on the left trunnion, King George III cypher, mounted on a wooden naval gun carriage on the West side of the Provincial Legislative Building.  This gun came from HMS Shannon which fought and captured USS Chesapeake in the War of 1812.

Cast Iron possible 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, no cypher, no markings, mounted on a wooden naval gun carriage on the East side of the Provincial Legislative Building.  This gun was taken as a war prize from the USS Chesapeake in the War of 1812.

HMS Shannon battles with the American frigate Chesapeake, 1 June 1813.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 2895982)

HMS Shannon captures the American frigate Chesapeake, 1813.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 2837818)

Halifax, MARCOM HQ, CFB Halifax

4-inch/40 QF Mk. XXI Gun on the High Angle Single Mk XXIV Mounting, SIL 1945, (Serial No. S/14676), 1944, King George VI cypher, mounted in a deck gun turret.  This naval gun is located beside the MARCOM HQ below the McDonald Bridge in the Halifax Dockyard.

o (Author Photos)

 (Peter Weiss Photos)

155-mm C1 (M1A2) Medium Howitzer on M1A2 Carriage, aka M114, manufactured at Sorel Industries Limited in Quebec, Queen Elizabeth II cypher. This Gun is located beside MARCOM HQ below the McDonald Bridge in the Halifax Dockyard.  CFR 34404.  The carriage plate reads: CARR. HOW. 155MM M1A2 CDN. SOREL INDUSTRIES LTD. CANADA 1955, REG. NO. CDN 14, INSP (symbol).  This gun is currently located beside 3 Int Coy in Willow Park.

Queen Elizabeth II, reigning from 6 Feb 1952 to present.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4314245)

Halifax, HMC Dockyard, CFB Halifax

Blomefield Cast Iron Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, 3-inch bore, (Serial No. 3905), broad arrow mark, Queen Victoria cypher and a second maker's cypher, mounted on a wood naval gun carriage.  No. 1 beside the main entrance to HMC Dockyard.

Blomefield Cast Iron Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, 3-inch bore, broad arrow mark, Queen Victoria cypher and a second maker's cypher, mounted on a wood naval gun carriage.  No. 2 beside the main entrance to HMC Dockyard.

Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun (TBC), 5-½ inch bore, heavily corroded, King George III cypher, recovered from Halifax harbour.  Mounted on a wood naval gun carriage, located in front of the central entrance to the Halifax Dockyard.

Halifax, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Admiralty House, Stadacona - Listed on a separate page.

Halifax, Fort Ogilvie, Point Pleasant Park

     

Cast Iron 10-inch 18-ton Muzzleloading Rifle, Queen Victoria cypher, weight 17-18-1-0 (38,220 lbs), 79 on barrel, Firth Steel (Serial No. 1968) on the muzzle face, RGF No. 79 II, 1870 on the left trunnion, + on the right trunnion.  This gun is mounted on the ramparts of Fort Ogilvie facing out to sea on fixed iron posts.  No. 1. 

7-inch 7-ton Muzzleloading Rifle, Queen Victoria cypher, weight and Serial number heavily corroded.  Unmounted, resting on wood blocks.  No. 2.

7-inch 7-ton Muzzleloading Rifle, Queen Victoria cypher, weight and Serial number heavily corroded.  Unmounted, resting on wood blocks.  No. 3.

Parks Canada records three possible 9-pounder 6-cwt Muzzleloading Rifles in Point Pleasant Park, one with a weight of 5-2-27 (643 lbs), Queen Victoria cypher, mounted on a concrete stand, a second with a weight of 5-3-0 (644 lbs),  Samuel Walker & Company of Rotherham, England (WCo) on left trunnion, (Serial No. unknown) on right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher, resting on wood blocks, and a third, weight unknown also resting on wood blocks.  These guns are no longer present.  The author can confirm one 9-pounder 6-cwt Muzzleloading Rifle is on display in RA Park in Halifax.

Halifax, York Redoubt - listed on a separate page

Halifax, Fort Ives, McNabs Island

(Dennis Jarvis Photos)

Guns in fixed defensive positions on the ramparts:

10-inch 18-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 1, mounted on an iron traversing carriage.

10-inch 18-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 2, mounted on an iron traversing carriage.

There are seven guns on the ground behind the ramparts:

9-inch 12-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 1, on wood blocks.

9-inch 12-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 2, on wood blocks.

10-inch 18-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 3, on wood blocks.

10-inch 18-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 4, on wood blocks.

9-inch 12-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 5, on wood blocks.

10-inch 18-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 6, on wood blocks.

10-inch 18-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 7, on wood blocks, behind the row of six guns. 

Fort Ives was built in 1864, updated in the 1890s, and again during the First World War.

Halifax, Fort McNab, McNab’s Island

6-inch Mk VII Breechloading Gun (Serial No. l346), mounted on a Central Pivot Mk II, VS&M, 1900, previously in a gun emplacement at Fort Ogilvie in Point Pleasant Park shown here, now in a gun emplacement on McNab's Island as shown below.

(Photo courtesy of Stephanie Clay) (Photo courtesy of P. Williams)

6-inch Mk VII Breechloading Gun (Serial No. 1346), VS&M, 1900, in a gun emplacement facing out to sea.

10-inch 32-ton Mk. I Breechloading Gun shown here on wooden pilings at its storage site in York Redoubt, before being moved to McNab's Island.

(Photo courtesy of P. Williams, Okehills)

10-inch 32-ton Mk. I Breechloading Gun (Serial No. 5), possibly dated 1889.  Recently returned from its storage site at York Redoubt.

Halifax, Fort Charlotte, George’s Island

George's Island, Halifax harbour, early 1900s.   (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3349677)

George's Island and Halifax terminals, 1934.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3348312)

Halifax harbour. George's Island-Fort Charlotte. Upper front battery. [architectural drawing] 1879. (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4132690)

Originally there were eight 9-inch 12-ton Mk. II Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching rings, on the Upper Battery, and four 10-inch 18-ton Muzzleloading Rifles in an underground Lower Battery.  At present there are seven 64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading Rifles on the island:

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading Rifle, No. 1, mounted on wood blocks in the Upper Battery position. 

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading RifleNo. 2, mounted on wood blocks in the Upper Battery position.

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading RifleNo. 3, mounted on wood blocks in the Upper Battery position.

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading RifleNo. 4, mounted on wood blocks in the Upper Battery position.

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading RifleNo. 5, mounted on wood blocks in the Lower Battery position.

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading RifleNo. 6, mounted on wood blocks on the ground behind the ramparts.

64-pounder 71-cwt Muzzleloading RifleNo. 7, mounted on wood blocks on the ground behind the ramparts.

Halifax, Fleet Diving Unit Atlantic, CFB Shearwater

(Photos courtesy of Chris Hollet)

9-inch 12-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 1, on wood blocks on the ground.  This gun is one of four recovered from a burial site in front of the Halifax Armoury, restored by the Fleet Diving Unit, Atlantic.  It is planned for it to be on display with the FDU (A).

Construction Engineers were digging around the Armoury in Halifax and discovered four 9-inch 12-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifles with Millar pattern breeching rings in the summer of 2011 in a burial site in front of the Halifax Armoury.  All four were recovered and restored by the Fleet Diving Unit.  The Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Section was called in to render the area safe.  Following examination, the guns were moved to a storage site at FDUA.  These guns were part of the original 38 Guns installed in the Citadel.  The unit cleaned the guns up and they are being relocated for display.

9-inch 12-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar pattern breeching ring, No. 1, on wood blocks on the ground.  This gun is now on display in front of the 1st (Halifax-Dartmouth) Field Artillery Regiment (RCA) armoury.

No. 2 of the four guns will be on display with the Fleet Diving Unit, Atlantic.  The ordnance on the ground beside it remains to be identified.

No. 3 of the four guns is now on display in the Royal Artillery Park in Halifax, mounted on iron posts.

No. 4 of the four guns is on display at the Maritime Command Museum at Stadacona, mounted on iron posts.  

Halifax, HMCS Scotian

(Photo courtesy of PO2 Tim Muise)

Vickers .303-inch Machine Gun, mounted on the wall inside the entrance to HMCS Scotian.

(Photo courtesy of PO2 Tim Muise)

Bronze Lyle Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun (2.5-inch bore), ca late 1800s to early 1900s.  This Lyle type gun was used to fire life lines from ship or shore.  Light-weight rope was shot out to a wreck after it had been carefully wound on a rope-board so it would uncoil without snagging. The crews would then use this rope to haul out the heavier lines which actually carried the breeches buoy. The survivors would brought ashore or to the tugboat in a breeches buoy, which was a pair of canvas pants sewed onto a life-preserver.  These line guns are used primarily for shore based rescue operations.  The shooter would fire, aiming over the victims head and then pull the line within reach of the victim.  They are also useful for rescuing victims that have fallen through the ice, or are stranded on a cliff or burning building.  Boats in distress need larger lines.  Lyle guns were designed to throw projectiles weighing approximately 15 pounds, carrying heavier rope over 1000 feet.  Getting this equipment close to a wreck would have been difficult, given the likelihood the conditions that caused the wreck would still have been present.TBC, mounted on a wood naval gun carriage, inside the ship.

Halifax, HMCS Sackville

4-inch/45 QF Mk. IX Gun on the High Angle Single Mk. XXIV Mounting, (Serial No. S/unknown), on the forward deck.

Hedgehog array onboard HMCS North Bay, Oct 1943.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3394476)

Hedgehog Anti-Submarine projector/mortars.

 

40-mm Bofors Light Anti-Aircraft Gun Mk. VIII on a Naval AA mount.

Oerlikon 20-mm/70 Light Anti-Aircraft Gun mounted on a naval gun stand.

Halifax, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, 1675 Lower Water Street.

   

3-pounder Hotchkiss Gun, (Serial No. 2534).  This gun was originally mounted in 1903 on the British cruiser HMS Antrim, but was presented to the RCN when Antrim was scrapped in 1921.  During the Second World War it was mounted on an RCN Fairmile submarine chaser operating out of Halifax.  The gun was later fitted on the RCMP cutter Irvine until it came to the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in 1966.

Cast Iron 24-pounder 13-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Carronade with a Blomefield pattern breeching ring, weight 12-3-21 (1,449 lbs).

 

Bronze 2-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading saluting gun.

Bronze Lyle Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun (2.5-inch bore), ca late 1800s to early 1900s.

Breechloading Swivel Gun, 17th century.

I would imagine that many of you who are reading this book are very likely familiar with the standard routine of military training exercises and the rigours of being in the field in all seasons, not to mention the conditions found on deployment these days. Whether or not you have experienced it, I am sure you can well imagine what it is like to train and work in the heat, the dust and the mosquitoes in summer, the wind, the rain and the mud in the spring and fall, the snow and the cold in the winter and of course the routine day-to-day challenges of combat exercises in the training areas of the Canadian Forces. For most in the Army, this includes CFB Gagetown, CFB Valcartier, CFB Petawawa, CFB Kingston, CFB Shilo, CFB Edmonton, CFB Wainwright, CFB Suffield and all the fields and exercise areas of LFAATC Aldershot and LFCATC Meaford and their environs.

As an Army Officer in the Canadian Forces, it has been my privilege to have served alongside a tremendous number of highly professional military men and women of our nation while taking part in training in Germany, the UK and the USA and while on operational deployments to Cyprus, Bosnia-Herzegovina and in Afghanistan. During my training and military professional development, I have learned much about our long military history. My interest in our multi-faceted historical record has led me to write about it and to seek out the stories about Canada's military servicemen and women and the tools and equipment they used to preserve our security when warclouds darkened our horizons.

As a military history enthusiast, I have learned over the years that there are many with similar interests in preserving our story. We have all seen the odd old gun or retired tank placed on display outside a Militia Drill Hall, War Memorial, city park site or Royal Canadian Legion Hall, and many will have enjoyed visiting a number of our military Museums. The vast majority of retired wartime combat equipment used by members of the CF have dwindled in number, many being scrapped, others being shot up as targets, while a few have been sold to overseas operators and collectors. Fortunately, a handful of important examples of retired CF guns and war machines have been preserved and may be found in a wide variety of locations throughout Canada.

Curators, docents and volunteers working in Canada's military museums have been successful in preserving a good number of retired military weapons of war and many are still being sought after and in some cases, being restored to running condition again. As an artist, photographer and military history enthusiast, I have attempted to keep track of where historic Canadian military equipment has survived and is presently located and to make that information available to others with the same interest. For those of like mind, the purpose of this handbook is to provide a simple checklist of the classic Great War and WWII artillery that is part of our military heritage and a location guide to where they can be found in Canada. The book includes a number of photographs to illustrate an example of each gun wherever possible, and lists the locations of the survivors by province.

The numbers of restored Canadian guns is actually increasing as a few rare examples are being recovered from scrapyards and monument sites and salvaged for restoration. (Ultra rare items such as Skink AA gun turrets come to mind). One of the aims of this book is to help an enthusiast track down these monuments and museum artefacts and to have a simple reference book on hand with more detailed information about them such as a serial number, a Museum location and contact information which might be helpful in learning a bit of the history of a particular vehicle. The guns detailed in this handbook are listed alphabetically by manufacturer, number and type in the order that they came into service with the CF. The data is also appended with a list of most of the current guns found in the various collections and Museums in Canada. The book is also meant to serve as a companion volume to "Ironsides", Canadian Tanks and Armoured Fighting Vehicle Museums and Monuments, also available online.

It is my sincere hope that more of the guns and artillery found in this list will one day be added to the record of historically important military armament survivors that have been recovered and restored.


Shelldrake can be ordered online in softcover or e-book at these bookstores:

http://www.amazon.ca/Shelldrake-Canadian-Artillery-Museums-Monuments/dp/1469750007/ref=sr_1_44?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1331231081&sr=1-44

http://www.amazon.com/Shelldrake-Canadian-Artillery-Museums-Monuments/dp/1469750007/ref=sr_1_45?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1331231130&sr=1-45

http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000542288/Shelldrake.aspx

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/shelldrake-harold-a-skaarup/1109124375?ean=9781469750002&itm=46&usri=harold+skaarup 

Photos and technical data on artillery preserved in Canada may be viewed by Province on seprate pages on this website.