Incidents of the War, Ruins of Arsenal, Richmond, VA., 1865 April
Albumen print photograph
Mat: 16 in x 20 in; 40.64 cm x 50.8 cm; Sheet: 12 1/4 in x 15 3/4 in; 31.115 cm x 40.005 cm; Image: 6 13/16 in x 8 13/16 in; 17.30375 cm x 22.38375 cm
Purchase with the Art Acquisition Endowment Fund
The Confederate arsenal at Richmond was one of the most extensive establishments of the kind in the South. At the commencement of the war the rebel authorities took possession of a large number of private buildings, such as tobacco and cotton warehouses, and manufactories, and transformed them into Government shops. The masonry shown in the photograph formed the abutment of the Richmond and Petersburg Railroad bridge. The depot was immediately at the end of the structure, and became a portion of the arsenal. In the background are the ruins of the Franklin paper mill, and on the right those of the carbine manufactories. The space occupied by shells, stone, and blocks of iron formed the yard of the shops, in which the ordnance was made. In the foreground are piled up eleven-inch shells. In the middle are thirty pound shells, near which are half a dozen charges of canister and a large number of grape shot, each bundle of rings enclosing about thirty pounds of balls, and constituting a charge for a gun. Scattered over the yard, and standing near the base of the arch, are seen the elongated one hundred pound shell for rifled cannon.
The arsenal was destroyed by the great fire, at the evacuation of Richmond. The Tredegar Iron Works, where the Confederates manufactured a considerable portion of their artillery, were situated a short distance to the left of the ruins shown here, and escaped the conflagration.