Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   www.SilverHawkAuthor.com   
 
Artillery preserved in Canada 9c: Nova Scotia, Halifax, Fort George, Halifax Citadel

Artillery preserved in Fort George, Halifax Citadel

The web page has become to big for all the guns in Nova Scotia to be listed on one page, therefore the guns on display within the City of Halifax including York Redoubt, the Citadel, the Naval Museum of Halifax (previously known as the Maritime Command Museum) and Royal Artillery Park are listed on separate pages.

Data current to 17 June 2017.

Early 1900s views of and from the Halifax Citadel.  (Library and Archives Canada Photos, MIKAN Nos.  3305614, 3548205, 3305621, 3305618, 3305618 and 3350295)

Sing at the rear entrance from the parking lot at the Citadel.

Halifax Citadel, 1926.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3348971)

Halifax Citadel, with Cast Iron (possibly 10-inch 18-cwt) Smoothbore Muzzleloading Land Service Mortar, 1926.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3519557)

Two Gunners raising the flags at the Halifax Citadel early on Saturday morning, 22 June 2013.

Location diagram for the guns inside the Halifax Citadel.

The formidable defences of Fort George and the Halifax Citadel include a considerable number of large calibre guns of various eras.  The 16 guns and one Mortar, currently mounted on the ramparts of the Citadel are numbered here from one to 17 with number one located to the left of the signal mast/flag pole shown above where the two gunners are standing, on the ramparts of the Citadel.

Guns on the ramparts, numbered counterclockwise from right to left, beginning with the No. 1 gun sited North of the flagpole:

    

No. 1.  Cast Iron 10-inch, 18-ton Mk. III Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar-pattern breeching ring, weight corroded (>18,000 lbs), (RGF No. corroded, 1869) on left trunnion, blank on right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted and rests on wood blocks on the ramparts facing North, to the left of the signal mast.

    

No. 2.  Blomefield Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 33-3-24 (3,814 lbs) under the cascabel,  (1808) on the left trunnion, (12P) on the right trunnion, King George III cypher.  This gun is a CARRON replica, mounted on an iron garrison carriage, weight 16-1-10 (1,830 lbs).  This particular 12-pounder has gun often served as the noon day gun, which has been a feature of Halifax city life since it was first garrisoned by the British Army in 1749.  The Halifax gun was fired from the ramparts of the third Citadel.  The present Citadel was declared complete in 1856 and it was from this year that tradition holds the signal came from the Garrison artillery.

Iron garrison carriage weight 16-1-10 (1,830 lbs) for the noon day gun.

   

No. 3.  Cast Iron 7-inch, 7-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle, weight 7-2-1-24 (15,960 lbs), (RGF No. 15, 1866) on the left trunnion, blank on the right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher, mounted on an iron wheeled traversing carriage.  A bronze plaque mounted on the carriage notes this gun was "Restored by Canadian Parks Service, 1991".

 

No. 4. Cast Iron 7-inch, 7-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle, weight 7-2-1-4 (15,936 lbs), (RGF No. 35, 1866) on the left trunnion, blank on the right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher.  Firth Steel 21 on the face of the muzzle, mounted on an iron wheeled traversing carriage.   A bronze plaque mounted on the carriage notes this gun was "Restored by Canadian Parks Service, 1990".

 

No. 5. Cast Iron 7-inch, 7-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle, weight corroded (>15,000 lbs), left trunnion corroded, (+) on right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted, resting on wood blocks.

   

No. 6.  Cast Iron 68-pounder 95-cwt Smoothbore Gun with Millar pattern breeching ring, weight 95-1-0 (10,668 lbs), (1858) on the left trunnion, (+) on the right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher, mounted on a long wood traversing carriage.

 

No. 7. Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar-pattern breeching ring, weight corroded (>10.000 lbs), left trunnion corroded, (+) on the right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher, mounted on a long wood traversing carriage.

  

No. 8. Cast Iron 7-inch, 7-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle, weight corroded (>15,000 lbs), left trunnion corroded, (+) on right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted and is resting on wood blocks.

  

No. 9. Cast Iron 7-inch, 7-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle, weight corroded (>15,000 lbs), left trunnion corroded, (+) on right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted, resting on wood blocks.

  

No. 10.  Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 56-3-3 (6,359 lbs) under the cascabel, (71851, 1807) on the left trunnion, (32P) on the right trunnion, King George III cypher.  This gun is a CARRON replica mounted on a long wood traversing carriage.  (At least five of these guns have the same serial number and weight markings).

The Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun has a length of 9 feet 6 inches.  It is the most common 32-pounder in Canada and can be recognized by a reinforcing ring that is slightly raised followed by a definite "step-down" in the barrel just forward of the trunnions heading to the muzzle.

No. 11.  Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight stamped upside down on the gun, weight 56-3-0 (6,356 lbs), under the cascabel, (71851, 1807) on the left trunnion, (32P) on the right trunnion, King George III cypher.  This gun is a CARRON replica, and is unmounted, resting on wood blocks. 

 

No. 12.  Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 56-3-3 (6,359 lbs) under the cascabel, trunnions corroded, King George III cypher.  This gun is a CARRON replica and is mounted on a long wood traversing carriage.  (At least five of these guns have the same serial number and weight etc.)

   

No. 13.  Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 56-3-3 (6,359 lbs) under the cascabel, (71851, 1807) on the left trunnion, (32P) on the right trunnion, King George III cypher.  This gun is a CARRON replica and is mounted on a long wood traversing carriage.  (At least five of these guns have the same serial number and weight etc.)

     

No. 14.  Blomefield Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 56-3-3 (6,359 lbs) under the cascabel, (1807) on the left trunnion, (32P) on the right trunnion, King George III cypher.  This gun is a CARRON replica, and is mounted on a long wood traversing carriage.  (At least five of these guns have the same serial number and weight etc.). 

    

No. 15.  Cast Iron 10-inch 18-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Land Service Mortar, weight 18-1-1 (2,045 lbs), 1856, (WC) on left trunnion, (62) on the right trunnion.

      

No. 16.  Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar-pattern breeching ring, weight corroded (>6,000 lbs), left and right trunnions corroded, Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted, resting on wood blocks.

  

No. 17. Cast Iron 13-inch 36-cwt Land Service Smoothbore Muzzleloading Mortar, weight 35-2-7 (3,983 lbs), (1470) on the left trunnion, (Low Moor), Low Moor Ironworks of Bradford, England on the right trunnion.  This mortar stands to the right of the signal mast.

Artillery on display in the Citadel Parade Square.

The gun collection mounted on wood blocks on the Citadel courtyard has varied from year to year.  This photo was taken ca. Dec 1973.

There are nine guns resting in a row on wood blocks in the courtyard.  They are numbered from the rear, right to left, Nos. 1 to 9.

  

No. 1. Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar-pattern breeching ring, weight possibly 93-1-0 (10,444 lbs), left and right trunnions corroded, Queen Victoria cypher, unmounted.

 

No. 2. Cast Iron 32-pounder 56-cwt Muzzleloading Rifle with Millar-pattern breeching ring, weight corroded (>6,000 lbs), left and right trunnions corroded, possibly (WCo), Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted, resting on wood blocks.

   

No. 3. Armstrong 20-pounder 16-cwt Rifled Breech-loading Gun, weight 16-1-10 (1,802 lbs), (RGF 1867), on the left trunnion. (+) on the right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher, unmounted.

Twelve Armstrong 20-pounder 16-cwt Rifled Breech-loading Guns, were allocated to the defence of Halifax by the British War Office in January 1873.  These guns were likely intended only to be stored in the Halifax Citadel until an attack on Halifax seemed imminent.

  

No. 4.  Blomefield Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 33---25 (>3,727 lbs), (corroded No. CARRON 1819) on left trunnion, (corroded 12P) on right trunnion, King George III cypher, unmounted.

 

No. 5.  Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, no weight visible (>3,000 lbs), (C) on left trunnion, (16) on right trunnion, King George III cypher, unmounted replica gun.

No. 6.  Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, no weight visible (>3,000 lbs), (C) on left trunnion, (16) on right trunnion, King George III cypher, unmounted replica gun.

  

No. 7.  Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 16-3-26 (1,902 lbs), (SOLID) on left trunnion, (B) on right trunnion, very corroded, unmounted.  The ‘B’ stands for Bersham, near Wrexham in north Wales, showing that this gun was cast by John Wilkinson at his foundry there. The legend ‘SOLID’ on the trunnion shows that this is a gun bored out of the solid, therefore at the time, both up-to-date and expensive.  In fact this gun is a ‘B-SOLID’ product of Bersham.  These guns are based on what became known as the ‘Armstrong pattern’ which was introduced into British military service in 1729 and was current up until 1787.   The gun can be dated to ca. 1773 (when the ‘B-SOLID’ trunnion mark makes its first appearance) to 1796.  The last known reference to Wilkinson supplying guns dates to 1796, when the final guns definitely marked with ‘B-SOLID’ were proofed on 9 -10 May for Wiggins and Graham.  These were not guns for government service, as they have no royal badge or any other markings on the barrel, and also they are shorter than the normal government pattern Cast Iron 6-pounder. SBML Gun.  Information from the Ordnance Bill Books for the period 1773 - 1796 indicates that standard lengths for government service were 6, 6½ and 7ft, although a few were made in non-standard sizes of 4½ and 8½ft.  Guns of this type were cast by gunfounders for the civilian market, usually for smaller merchant ships, coastal communities or landowners who wanted some defence but also wanted something lighter and cheaper than a normal gun.  (Dr Brian G. Scott)

No. 8.  Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, no weight visible (>3,000 lbs), (C) on left trunnion, (16) on right trunnion, King George III cypher, unmounted replica gun.

  

No. 9.  Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, no weight visible (>3,000 lbs), (C) on left trunnion, (16) on right trunnion, King George III cypher, unmounted replica gun.

   

Blomefield Cast Iron 24-pounder 50-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 50-0-12 (5,612 lbs) on the barrel, (1805), on left trunnion, (24P) on the right trunnion, replica gun mounted on an iron garrison carriage, in the courtyard.

Gun Gin in the courtyard.

 

Blomefield Cast Iron 12-pounder 34-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, weight 34-1-1 (3,837 lbs) below the cascabel,  (WCo), Samuel Walker & Company of Rotherham, England on left trunnion, right trunnion corroded, replica gun mounted on an iron garrison carriage, on the parade ground beside the Gun Gin stand.

 

Cast Iron 7-inch, 7-ton Mk. I Muzzleloading Rifle, weight corroded (>15,000 lbs), left trunnion corroded, (+) on right trunnion, Queen Victoria cypher.  This gun is unmounted, resting on wood blocks near the gun gin in the courtyard.

  

Cast Iron 32-pounder 17-cwt Smoothbore Muzzleloading Carronade with a Blomefield pattern breeching ring, weight 17-1-11 (1,943 lbs), mounted on a wood naval gun carriage near the gun gin in the courtyard.

Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, replica gun, mounted on a wood naval gun carriage.  No. 1 of 2.

Cast Iron 12-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, replica gun, mounted on a wood naval gun carriage.  No. 2 of 2.

Armstrong 6-pounder 3-cwt Rifled Breech-loading Gun, reported in this location (not observed).  There should be one of six listed in the "Returns for Halifax" in 1879 (not shown here).  Sessional Papers (No. 5), A. 1879, Appendix No. 8.  The Return shows the Number of Guns in possession of the Militia and in Dominion Stores at the various places enumerated, exclusive, however, of Guns mounted upon the Fortifications at Halifax, the Reserves maintained by the Imperial Government at that Station and at Esquimalt, and Guns owned by the Hudson Bay Company and by private individuals.  Thomas Wily, Director of Stores and Keeper of Militia Properties, and Colonel W. Powell, Adjutant-General of Militia, Ottawa, 27 Dec 1878, p. 276-281.

Halifax, Army Museum, Halifax Citadel 

Cast Iron possible 3-pounder Smoothbore Muzzleloading Gun, heavily corroded, trunnions broken, recovered from the sea near Louisbourg.

.45-calibre Gatling Battery Gun, Colt Fire Arms, (Serial No. 00).

45-inch 5-barrel Nordenfelt Mk. II Machine Gun mounted on a galloping carriage, 1887.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3228076)

45-inch 5-barrel Nordenfelt Mk. II Machine Gun, and Royal Navy Marine gunners, 1890s.  (Royal Navy Photo)

5-inch 5-barrel Nordenfelt Mk. II Machine Gun, stamped Enfield 1889, Nordenfelt No. 216 Mark II, weight 1-1-6 (146 lbs), Cartridge Machine Gun 41.  (Army Museum Photo), left, and a view showing the ammunition feed system.  (Guilmann Photo), right

The Nordenfelt gun was a is a multiple barrel organ gun that had a row of up to twelve barrels (he one shown here in the Army Museum has five). It was fired by pulling a lever back and forth and ammunition was gravity fed through chutes for each barrel.  It was produced in a number of different calibres from rifle up to 25 mm (1 inch).  Larger calibres were also used, but for these calibres the design simply permitted rapid manual loading rather than true automatic fire.  This specific Nordenfelt Gun was intended for use as an anti-personnel weapon.

German First World War 7.92-mm Maxim Spandau MG 08 Machinegun, possibly (Serial Nr. 258) or (Serial Nr. 2707, mounted on a Schlitten stand.  This MG 08 was likely captured ca 1918 by a Battalion of a Brigade within a Canadian Division of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) in France. 

German First World War 7.58-cm leichtes Minenwerfer neuer Art (7.58-cm leMW), (Serial Nr. 18351), 213.  This trench mortar was captured on 26 Aug 1918 by the 19th Battalion, 4th Infantry Brigade, 2nd Canadian Division, Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF), at Guemappe, France.

The 7.58 cm Minenwerfer a.A. (alter Art or old model) (7.58 cm leMW).  The Germans fielded a whole series of mortars before the beginning of the First World War.  Their term for them was Minenwerfer, literally mine-thrower; they were initially assigned to engineer units in their siege warfare role.  By the Winter of 1916-17, they were transferred to infantry units where the leMW's light weight permitted them to accompany the foot-soldiers in the advance.  In common with Rheinmetall's other Minenwerfer designs, the leMW was a rifled muzzle-loader that had hydraulic cylinders on each side of the tube to absorb the recoil forces and spring recuperators to return the tube to the firing position.  It had a rectangular firing platform with limited traverse and elevation.  Wheels could be added to ease transportation or it could be carried by at least six men.  In 1916, a new version, designated as the n.A. or neuer Art, was fielded that included a circular firing platform, giving a turntable effect, which permitted a full 360 degree traverse.  It also had a longer 16 inches (410 mm) barrel and could be used for direct fire between 0° and 27° elevation if the new 90 kg (200 lb) trail was fitted to absorb the recoil forces.  In this mode it was pressed into service as an anti-tank gun.

Twin .50-calibre AA Heavy Machine Guns.

Twin .50 cal MGs, shipboard.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3356796)

Oerlikon 20-mm/70 Light Anti-Aircraft Guns being manned on the roof of the Canadian Military Headquarters (CMHQ), London, UK, ca 1942.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 3238905)

Oerlikon 20-mm/70 Light Anti-Aircraft Gun with manikin.

German 81-mm Mortar, (Serial Nr. FG214).

75-mm M20 RR Recoilless Rifle, (Serial No. 7229225).

Pistol like device used as an electrical initiator for firing large coastal guns.  1915 Model.

Halifax Citadel, 1957.  (Library and Archives Canada Photo, MIKAN No. 4317773)