Lot 521: David D. Porter

RR Auction

2015-10-29 11:34:12

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Lot 521: Admiral (1813-1891) who helped improve the Navy as the superintendent of the US Naval Academy after significant service in the American Civil War. LS, three pages on two adjoining sheets, 7.75 x 10, May 5, 1858. Letter to Captain John Pope, explaining his recent invention improving upon the quoin-a notched wedge for supporting and maneuvering cannons-used on naval gun carriages. In part: "I beg leave to offer for your inspection a Quoin & Bed for Naval Gun Carriages, an invention of my own,-My attention was drawn to this subject, owing to the difficulty of managing the quoin & bed, now in use in the Navy-I have heretofore been in favor of the Screw, but I think that my quoin possesses advantages even over the Screw...The quoin has a bolt in the small end, with a head to it, which slides in a slot in the bed, and prevents it from flying out, from the recoil, or concussion...With my quoin, it is only required to have the breech of the gun raised, two inches to move the quoin.-The old requires that the breech be raised sixteen inches. My quoin can be moved easily by a boy,-the old quoin requires both hands of a Capt of a gun to move it, and then, not only with great difficulty, but with the risk of not getting into the right ratchet, and having to try it over again." In fine condition. Accompanied by a photocopy of Porter's patent for the invention, which was granted on December 21, 1858. RR Auction's Fine Autographs & Artifacts Friday, 23rd October 2015 Estimate: $200-400
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