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Shells April 1916


Guest woodyudet
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Guest woodyudet

I wonder if anyone can help me with my query. I'm currently writing a dissertation about the easter rising Dublin April 1916.

A number of the sources refer to the Army firing incendiaries...

I believe this is incorrect because ...

1:There were no 'incendiary' shells per se.

2:Smoke wasn't available for guns in April 1916 [only mortars] cr P. Griffith "Battle Tactics of the Western Front"

It seems to me that fires in buildings would be caused by:

a: red hot shrapnel balls from shells exploding inside a building and embedding themselves in furniture and the like.

b: HE shells exploding inside a building.

Does this seem sensible?

Am I correct in assuming that any HE fired would have 'Fuse Graze 100' attached - given the date?

I looked through the files of the Irish Command but found no reference to types and numbers of ammunition fired. Was ammunition expenditure recorded centrally by the War Office? If so, where would I be able to find out this information?

many thanks,

regards,

Woody

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Woody

Did you mean artillery shells or bullets? The incendiary bullet was adopted in 1915 by the british army.

Best Regards

N.S.Regt.

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As far as I am aware, the British army have never used an incendiary shell or mortar bomb as such. White phosphorus has an incendiary effect, but it is primarily a smoke weapon and anyway it was not in service then.

What about illuminating ammunition (star shell)? Were these in service then? They would certainly start fires if fired into buildings, but I don't know when they were introduced.

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Guest woodyudet

There's no record of star shell being used. In fact there wasn't much need for it given that the targets in Sackville St were illuminated by the raging fires.

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  • 1 year later...

The Military Archives at Cathal Brugha Barracks in Dublin have a statement made by a Captain E. Gerrard, stationed, in 1916, at Athlone where there was two batteries of guns (eight guns). Not one of them was in a position to fire without being oiled and pumped by the artificiers. The only ammunition availible, he says, was shrapnel. He specifically says there was no high explosive, no smoke and no incendiary shells. They managed to make fit for action four guns out of the eight and these four guns were taken by train to Dublin. He claims that both batteries were comanded by two men who were unable to ride a horse and the second in command of the guns weighed more than twenty five stone and was the most incompetent Captain in the British Army.

Also quoted in "Witnesses - Inside the Easter Rising" by Annie Ryan, published by Liberties Press (www.libertiespress.com)

I wonder if anyone can help me with my query. I'm currently writing a dissertation about the easter rising Dublin April 1916.

A number of the sources refer to the Army firing incendiaries...

I believe this is incorrect because ...

1:There were no 'incendiary' shells per se.

2:Smoke wasn't available for guns in April 1916 [only mortars] cr P. Griffith "Battle Tactics of the Western Front"

It seems to me that fires in buildings would be caused by:

a: red hot shrapnel balls from shells exploding inside a building and embedding themselves in furniture and the like.

b: HE shells exploding inside a building.

Does this seem sensible?

Am I correct in assuming that any HE fired would have 'Fuse Graze 100' attached - given the date?

I looked through the files of the Irish Command but found no reference to types and numbers of ammunition fired. Was ammunition expenditure recorded centrally by the War Office? If so, where would I be able to find out this information?

many thanks,

regards,

Woody

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