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[368] knowledge of others. The Confederate soldiers had to rely for improved arms on captures on the battle-field, and on importation, when the blockade could be avoided, having available no large armory.

The Tredegar Iron-Works at Richmond, Va., was the chief manufactory of seige and field-guns, all cast iron and smooth bore. The large Columbiads were made there, also the howitzers, 12-inch bronze Napoleons, etc. But the highly-valued banded Parrot 3-inch rifles, with which the army was well supplied, were, as a rule, captured on the battle-field.

As the war continued great difficulties were experienced in obtaining the needful ordnance supplies, and many devices were resorted to. After the battles about Chattanooga, Tenn., when the Confederacy lost possession of the copper mines, no more bronze Napoleons could be made; but, instead thereof, a light cast-iron 12-pounder, well banded after the manner of the Parrot guns, was made, and found to be equally as effective as the Napoleon.

At the beginning of the war it must be remembered the Confederacy had no improved arms, no powder-mills, no arsenals, no armories, no cap machines, and no improved cannon. All supplies at first, were obtained by importation, though the blockade subsequently cut off this foreign supply. All arms were percussion-cap lock, and issued to the troops.

To keep a supply of percussion-caps was a difficult and very serious problem, as the demand for caps was about twice as great as it was for cartridges.

The machines made after the United States pattern did not yield a large supply, and simpler and much more efficient machines for making, fitting, pressing, and varnishing caps were invented and made by Southern mechanics.

After the Federals obtained possession of the copper-mines of Tennessee great anxiety was excited as to the future store of copper, from which to manufacture percussion-caps.

The casting of bronze field-guns was immediately suspended, and all available copper was carefully hoarded for the manufacture of caps. It soon became apparent that the supply would be exhausted, and the armies rendered useless unless other sources of supply could be obtained. No reliance could be placed on the supply from abroad, though large orders were forwarded, so stringent was the blockade; of course, the knowledge of this scarcity of copper was not made public.

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