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Mortar (3)


Granted to Iowa by an act of Congress, this 13-inch seacoast mortar was shipped from a naval yard in Washington, D.C., in 1895. The 22,000-pound mortar was cast in 1861 at Fort Pitt, Pennsylvania. It was mounted on the North Atlantic Squadron gunboat "Matthew Vassar" and used in the bombardment of Forts St. Phillip and Jackson (1862) and of Vicksburg (1863) during the Civil War. The mortar was given to the state as a reminder of that war.