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 Coehorns 
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Post Coehorns
I am reading Gardner W. Allen's A Naval History of the American Revolution. He mentions that some vessels (not bomb) carried coehorns, which are small mortars. Where were they located on the ship? Did the British use them too (or some sort of equivalent)?

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Tue Oct 16, 2007 5:21 am
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The 4.4" bronze Cohorn Mortar was introduced into the RN in the early 18th C. (Named for the Baron Coehorn). It was used in boats in the Seven Years War. Its use in this manner in subsequent conflicts is uncertain. It weighed about 2 cwt. It was issued, officially, for land service i.e. with landing parties. The shells for this weapon were occasionally fired from 12pdr long guns during the Great War.

However, in American usage cohorn or coehorn was used more generally and could refer to a wide variety of swivelled pieces. (Caruana: " The History of English Sea Ordnance 1523-1875").

I doubt if that information answers the question!


Tue Oct 16, 2007 11:27 am
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IONIA wrote:
However, in American usage cohorn or coehorn was used more generally and could refer to a wide variety of swivelled pieces. (Caruana: " The History of English Sea Ordnance 1523-1875").

Thanks for the information. It was the first time I had come across the term, so it helps. Allen is specifically referring to the mortar form, as he also mentions swivels in the same sentence.

I had a brief look on the Net and found reference on a War of 1812 site about the use of coehorns in the tops along with multi-barrel guns. I am assuming that that refers more to the swivels as I can't really see a mortar being used up there. Or was it?

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Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:04 pm
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From Spencer Tucker's Arming the Fleet: US Naval Ordnance in the Muzzle-Loading Era: "In the American Navy, light pieces were usually known as coehorns" and "Coehorn seems to have been generic term for light howitzers, swivels and mortars -- in short, any ordnance that could be transported by one or two men."
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Tue Oct 16, 2007 10:02 pm
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Not much help, but Woodes Rogers' flagship, the Duke, had a "cohorn mortar" on his 1709-11 circumnavigation. It is unclear, but the context suggests that it was being fired aboard ship.

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Wed Nov 07, 2007 5:35 pm
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susan wrote:
IONIA wrote:
However, in American usage cohorn or coehorn was used more generally and could refer to a wide variety of swivelled pieces. (Caruana: " The History of English Sea Ordnance 1523-1875").

Thanks for the information. It was the first time I had come across the term, so it helps. Allen is specifically referring to the mortar form, as he also mentions swivels in the same sentence.

I had a brief look on the Net and found reference on a War of 1812 site about the use of coehorns in the tops along with multi-barrel guns. I am assuming that that refers more to the swivels as I can't really see a mortar being used up there. Or was it?


Hi Susan!

I would confidently assume that a swivel was beign referred to, as I can't see any way to fire a coehorn mortar from the tops.

-clash

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Fri Nov 09, 2007 4:04 pm
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