Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Broomfield, Colorado
Indigowolf, thanks for posting that excellent photo of the sailor standing next to one of the fourteen, 6 pounder, 2.24", Driggs Schroeder deck guns that Olympia had in 1905. Most of those are gone now, but Mike and I learned a lot from the full time mechanic the association hired to get the armaments in functioning condition. He was working on one of the 6"- 40 Casemate guns which replaced the 5"- 40 guns sometime after WWI, when we visited the Olympia 4 years ago. He showed us the full traverse, about 25 degrees left and right, but was working on the locked-up elevation controls at the time. He indicated that the guns needed lots of grinding to remove welds, lots of Break-Free to loosen rusted parts and lots and lots of hammering! He used a large bronze maul to free-up rust-frozen parts so as not to dent the iron.
Mike and I really like turn of the century, naval artillery, so this ship is high on our list of places to visit. The Olympia, a Protected Cruiser, was laid down by the Union Iron Works of San Francisco, California in 1891 and launched about a year later. She can now be found at her berth at the Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia, PA.
Mike and Tracy
Smokin my pipe on the mountings, sniffin the mornin cool,
I walks in my old brown gaiters along o my old brown mule,
With seventy gunners beind me, an never a beggar forgets
Its only the pick of the Army that handles the dear little pets - Tss! Tss!
From the poem Screw-Guns by Rudyard Kipling