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The 12-pounder Napoleon


The 12-pounder Napoleon

An African-American soldier guards a Napoleon.

Library of Congress Photograph

Designed and named for the French Emperor Napoleon III, the Napoleon was the workhorse gun of the Civil War artillery. Cast of bronze, the smoothbore Napoleon was capable of firing a 12-pound solid ball, shell, case shot, or canister. Both sides deployed this versatile gun in large numbers.

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