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Civil War Cannons - Parrott 100 Pdr

Parrott 100 Pdr
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    The First Marine Medal of Honor

U.S. Marine Cpl. John F. Mackie and 11 other marines joined the crew of the brand new ironclad USS Galena at Fort Monroe, Virginia after the Confederate defeat at Yorktown on the penninsula and the destruction of the CSS Virginia(former USS Merrimac) on 11 May 1862. The Galena led a small flotilla of gunboats up the James toward Richmond. The Galena destroyed two Confederate shore batteries of about a dozen guns each as she pressed on for Richmond. She raked the riverbank with grape and canister from her 9 Inch Dahlgren Shell Guns on a regular basis at the very hint of Confederate snipers. She saved her 100 Pdr. Parrott bolts and percussion shells for the two long range rifles she had to fire on heavily fortified seacoast gun positions. When she came under fire from the former ironclad Virginia`s Dahlgren and Brooke guns and gun crews, she lost 14 killed and 11 wounded in less than three hours. Cpl. Mackie led his fellow Marines to clear the dead and wounded from a still functional 100 Pdr. Parrott Rifle, and place supressive fire upon the large elevated battery to allow the captain time to withdraw his shattered vessel downriver to safety. For his courageous actions on 15 May 1862, Cpl. Mackie was awarded a Congressional Medal Of Honor, the first U.S. Marine to earn this brand new medal. The USS Monitor was with the flottila, but could not elevate her guns high enough to hit the elevated Drewry`s Bluff Battery.


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