GUNSIGHT ANTIQUES

We'll not repeat the entire story of Butler's Folly here except for a quick reminder that it was a Union initiated scheme to strip and disguise a government ship (USS Louisiana) to look like a blockade-runner, load it with 215 tons of black powder and, under cover of darkness, anchor the thing in the shallow just off Fort Fisher at the mouth of North Carolina's Cape Fear River. Upon setting an elaborate clockwork fuse system the Yankee sailors abandoned the rouse ship to wait in the clear for what they knew would be a disastrous result upon the Confederate fort. But alas, once the eruption of flames and rattling shock waves cleared, Fort Fisher stood pretty much as before, stout and proud. A report of the Union fiasco wound be included in the 1891 Government Printing Office publication of the Official Records of the Union & Confederate Armies. The product of this 4 X 8 X 7/8 inch wood and type lead printing plate of the Union Powder Vesselis seen in the Government Printing Office Official Record Atlas, Vol. 40, Plate 1. Emanating from a local estate sale the printing plate bears an old pencil inscription Lower Cape Fear Historical Society on the back.
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