Man Finds Civil War Mortar On NC Beach

Pamlico County, NC -- The beach showcased more than shells for a man along the North Carolina coast.

A New Bern man was walking in the Pamlico County town of Oriental this week when he found a Civil War mortar.

The man says he took the mortar home and started to clean it. As he started to clean it though, he thought twice and instead called authorities Thursday.

New Bern police, New Bern fire and the Cherry Point Marine explosive ordnance disposal team responded. The team took the mortar and will dispose of it.

It was determined the mortar is a 3.1" to 3.5" mortar of Civil War era. For a larger view of the mortar, click on the photo tab above.


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  • by shellhunter Location: swamplands on Jan 29, 2012 at 05:22 PM
    its not a mortar because mortars were smoothbore this is a rifled projectile looks to b a 6.4 mullane sabot plate is missing from base of shell has double bands with archer precussion fuse. it was fired by one type of cannon only. this was 6.4 brooke rifle the only vessel that had these guns in the neuse river was the CSS NUESE!
  • by Curious Location: Fort Wayne on Jan 28, 2012 at 01:01 PM
    Is it true that the guy who found it tried to clean it using a hammer? I got this image in my head of an idiot banging on a mortar round with a hammer. North or South, that's something else.
  • by Yankeeland on Jan 28, 2012 at 04:43 AM
    Dumb yankees can't clean up behind themselfs.Dont believe me?Just look at Occupy Wall Street.
  • by History Nerd Location: ENC on Jan 27, 2012 at 03:33 PM
    Enough of English class. This is not a "Civil War mortar round." Mortars used in the 1860's were not this small. IF it is from the Civil War period and the dimensions are close as reported, it could be a field artillery shell (from a rifled Ordanance or Parrott gun.) If it is a mortar, it is from the 20th century. Big difference. The fuze (yes spelled with a "Z" as common for the Civil War period) would be in the nose, which is the rounded end. This would appear as a round disc about the size of a quarter. Solid bolts were more rare, but the weight of the round would determine this. From the picture, hard to tell. For young readers, pay attention in history class. You too could respond to this nonsense one day with clairty and absolute confidence :)
    • reply
      by ralphie on Jan 27, 2012 at 04:25 PM in reply to History Nerd
      Hey Nerd- I cannot argue with you on the facts of the thing from the picture...i do seem to recall the civil war era mortars as being stumpy like a lopped off cannon, and the ordnance for them being spherical. I had gone on about the word. But, it is not worth starting, or re-kindling really is more accurate, a civil war over.
  • by ralphie Location: ahoskie on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:41 AM
    it is a mortar ROUND. The mortar is the chunk of iron with a tubular shaped hole from which the mortar ROUND is launched.... If words did not matter, then we could hum, and folks would know what we are saying! PS: a year later is THE anniversary. NOT the one year anniversary... 3 yrs is third anniversary, NOT three year anniversary... see?
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:56 AM in reply to ralphie
      all hail grammar the Nazi!
      • reply
        by ralphie on Jan 27, 2012 at 02:56 PM in reply to
        Oh don't stand up! keep eating...
    • reply
      by yes on Jan 27, 2012 at 02:39 PM in reply to ralphie
      words do matter, but your insistence upon them matching YOUR standards, interestingly, does not. amazingly, we are still able to communicate, whether our grammar and language is perfect or not. Therefore, your example regarding with humming is incorrect. Just a tip from someone who actually has experience and studies these things. you should try it before getting high and mighty.
      • reply
        by ralphie on Jan 27, 2012 at 02:55 PM in reply to yes
        except that folks would wonder why the ordnance disposal unit exploded a mortar, while having complete understanding that exploding a live round. You may THINK you are communicating, but unless you confirm with the person to whom you are (mis)communicating, deliberately by all appearances in your retort, you cannot know that they think you said what you tried to say. Communicating consists of the thought, the word, speaking (conveying somehow, phone voice email...) the word, then the recipient hearing and understanding that word(or words). If you use an incorrect word, then the best you can hope for is miscommunication. Journalists, being in the communication (ostensibly, these last years indicate more of a deliberate MIScommunication) should know this.
        • reply
          by Anonymous on Jan 27, 2012 at 03:19 PM in reply to ralphie
          Please stop.
        • reply
          by anon on Jan 27, 2012 at 06:03 PM in reply to ralphie
          shouldn't you be back in yankeeland with the rest of the know it alls?
  • by Formerly O.L.I. Location: ENC on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:24 AM
    This is actually an interesting story. The eastern seaboard is still known in history as the 'Graveyard of the Atlantic'. No telling how many artifacts people drive their boats over, everyday. Wonder how many people pull something like this in a net, and KEEP it? They might want to rethink that one.
    • reply
      by ralphie on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:54 AM in reply to Formerly O.L.I.
      A fishing boat back in 60's..maybe 50's... i forget, a teacher told us of it, not that I read it...anyway, they hoisted the net, swung it over the deck, and were just wondering what that thing is, when the torpedo broke through the net... Bye, snoopy.
      • reply
        by Formerly O.L.I. on Jan 28, 2012 at 02:24 PM in reply to ralphie
        What do you mean? The 'thing' exploded the boat? Terrible!
      • reply
        by troy on Jan 28, 2012 at 02:35 PM in reply to ralphie
        this did happen in real life and the name of the boat if i remember correctly was the ,snoopy... off the coast of virginia and allmost all aboard were lost i think but one and if the story is correct he disapeared at sea on a nother trip out to sea
  • by Johnny Ringo Location: um? on Jan 27, 2012 at 10:07 AM
    Um.....looks like a whale turd
    • reply
      by Chuck on Jan 27, 2012 at 10:51 AM in reply to Johnny Ringo
      Interesting comment coming from someone named Johnny.
      • reply
        by Peppermint Patty on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:15 AM in reply to Chuck
        Hey Chuck....Did it take you long to come up with that one......surely you can better than that
      • reply
        by Hahahahaha! on Jan 28, 2012 at 06:20 AM in reply to Chuck
        Interesting comment with a name like(UP)chuck.
    • reply
      by Anon on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:13 AM in reply to Johnny Ringo
      HAHA!!!
    • reply
      by Formerly O.L.I. on Jan 27, 2012 at 11:25 AM in reply to Johnny Ringo
      Well gee willickers, Mr. Ringo! I don't believe I've ever seen one. Where did you see one? Oh wait; maybe I don't want to know.
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