Split Shot Physical Object

Accession Number
Creation Date
circa 1620
Half of a cannon split shot (see also 1986.08.0583b).

19.5 by 8.2 by 4.0 cm.

Exhibition Label
Case Caption: CANNON SHOT The gunners were supervised by the master gunner. On duty 12 hours a day, they had to sleep on deck no matter what the weather, wrapped in their great cloaks and ready for any threat. Since cannon were not standardized at this time, gunners needed to know what size ammunition went with which gun, how to store it, and how to load and fire accurately. After a period of training, they had to pass an examination before they got extra pay. In battle, they would be assisted by apprentice sailors and ship's boys.
Object Caption: Chain Shot, Split Shot Cast iron (c.1620) Gift of Jamestown Inc. 1986.008.0583a-b, 2280a All these complex forms of shot were designed to cut a wider swath than the standard ball. They could tear down rigging and sails or wreak havoc amongst enemy crew.