Where did whistling dick go to?
...bet you didn't think this was what I meant.. hehe... sorry...feeling punchy....
Whistling Dick was a banded and rifled 18-pound Confederate siege and garrison cannon that was originally cast as a Model 1839 smooth-bore. It earned it name by a peculiar whistling sound made by projectiles fired from the gun. The cannon was an integral part of the confederate defenses protecting Vicksburg and the Mississippi River and during the 1863 siege of Vicksburg and is credited with sinking the Union gunboat Cincinnati. The cannon believed to be Whistling Dick fell into Union hands with the July 4th surrender of Vicksburg and it was soon shipped to trophy point at the Unites States Military Academy West Point, New York. During the ensuing decades, questions about the authenticity of the cannon were raised; chief among them was a story as told by one of the former gun-crew that surfaced in 1900. He claimed that on the night of July 3rd 1863 a detail of 14 confederate soldiers moved the cannon from it firing position on Wymans Hill to the old Vicksburg waterfront. There it was transferred to a coal barge, paddled into the main channel of the Mississippi River and dumped overboard. Finally, some 100 years later, it was discovered that the cannon shipped to West Point was not Whistling Dick, but actually a similar cannon known as the Widow Blakely. Geological analysis of available this and other historic information indicates two possible locations for Whistling Dick, Centennial Lake or a Loess cave on Wymans Hill. In 1863 the Mississippi River did flow in front of Vicksburg, but in 1876 a cutoff occurred (Centennial Cutoff) isolating Vicksburg from the river and forming a shallow oxbow lake, located just west of Vicksburg, Ms. Whistling Dick weighted about 2.5 tones and while the logistics of movement might have been difficult, a river location is plausible. Alternately, burial of the cannon in a Loess cave on or near Wymans Hill is another possibility. Although numerous Loess caves were known to exist in this area, there is no documentation either substantiated or unsubstantiated indicating such a fate for the cannon. In conclusion, neither hypothesis adequately explains the disappearance of Whistling Dick. However, given the size of the cannon, advanced geophysical techniques may be able to locate a magnetic or gravity anomaly produced by the cannon.
- Asked by timeforanoverhaul
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