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SCHOOL OF THE PIECE.
right-wheel, to take position in front of the leaders; when there, he orders, Right-about wheel, halt, and dismount.
If there be not space enough on the right for the above movement, or if maneuvring with a corps, (as it would be necessary that the piece should be in advance of its front,) twenty paces in rear of the line on which the piece is to form battery, the command is given,
1. To the left into battery.
3. MARCH. The piece wheels to the left, and advances in that direction, until it has passed ten paces beyond the line. The chief then commands,
Piece-left-about wheel-MARCH. The piece wheels to the left-about, and halts when its limber has passed to the rear of the line of formation. The prolongation of the line of formation should pass through the middle of the prolonge.
The caisson, after wheeling to the right, moves to its proper distance in rear, obliquing to the right, and wheeling to the left-about.
In horse-artillery, the squad halts, when the piece wheels to the left, and dismounts.
Battery may be formed to the right by a similar movement.
To march in Retreat. To march in retreat, only differs from the march to the front, in the caisson preceding instead of following the piece. If it be necessary to fire while marching in retreat, the command is given, HALT-TO ACTION, and the fire commences. In horse-artillery, the chief of the squad commands, Squad—DISMOUNT, and the horses are led round in front of the leaders.
MANUAL OF THE HOWITZER. The same number of men are necessary for the service of a twenty-four pounder howitzer, as are required for a six-pounder field-piece, viz.
1 non-commissioned officer, to take charge of the caisson and ammunition-box.
1 commissioned officer, or, in case of deficiency, a senior non-commissioned officer, to čommand the whole.
For manæuvring with bricoles, four additional matrosses are required as auxiliaries.
The positions of the whole are the same as has been prescribed in the Manual of the Piece. They have the same equipments, and are charged with the same duties.
The auxiliaries may be employed, if necessary, in preparing the shells and supplying ammunition. Although the functions of the men employed in the service of a field six-pounder, and a twenty-four pounder howitzer, should correspond to each other, and have been amply detailed above, it is nevertheless thought proper to repeat them here, in order to point out some slight differences in the method of loading the two guns.
At the command To action, given by the chief of the piece, No. 3 unhooks the water-bucket, places it under the arm of the axletree, and lights his portfire. The gunner of the right places himself between the point ing-handspikes, gives the direction, and resumes his post.
At the word Load, the gunner of the left steps to the breech, to stop the vent and give the elevation. Nos. 1 and 2 step towards the muzzle, to bal the howitzer. No. I pushes the cartridge genily to the bottom of the chamber. No. 2 places the shell in such manner that the fuze shall be exactly in the direction of the axis of the bore. The rest of the manual is similar to that of the field-piece.
If the object fired at be beyond the point-blank range of the piece, the gunner' will not give the elevation until Nos. 1 and 2 have retired from the muzzle, and he will then use the quadrant, if there be no graduated movable sight.
The manner of advancing and retreating with bricoles, and the maneuVres with the prolonge and with the limber, are the same as has been prescribed in the School of the Piece.
SCHOOL OF THE BATTERY.
General Principles. A BATTERY for field-service is here supposed to consist of six pieces, (of either of the calibers designated for the field, or mixed,) each piece having its caisson, which is to manæuvre with it, and each piece and caisson being drawn by four horses.*
The battery must be numbered, both pieces and caissons, from right to left. In every movement, the chief of each piece, in giving the word, will designate it by its number; and, except in extraordinary cases, the numbers are not to be inverted.
The battery is divided into three sections, each consisting of two pieces and two caissons, and numbered, in like manner, from right to left.
It is also divided into half-batteries, each consisting of three pieces and three caissons, called right and left half-batteries.
The battery is supposed to be served by a company, consisting of a cap. tain, four subalterns, and a sufficient number of non-commissioned officers and privates.t
The captain commands the battery. Three subalterns (or, in case of deficiency, senior non-commissioned officers) command the sections. The senior commands the first section, the next the third section, and the next commands the second section.
The officer of the first section commands the right half-battery, and the officer of the third section the left half-battery; the officer of the second section becomes attached to the right half-battery.
The junior subaltern commands the line of caissons, and, by way of distinction, will be called the officer of the train.
A sergeant (or corporal) shall have charge of each piece, and direct its movements.
A non-commissioned officer shall always have charge of each caisson, and direct its movements. The senior non-commissioned officer of each section of caissons will be considered the chief of that section.
Two non-commissioned officers will act as guides and markers. These duties being useless in front of an enemy, they will then be employed with the caissons.
* For purposes of instruction, light pieces and empty caissons may be drawn by two horses.
† A company of volunteer artillery may not have a sufficient number of men for the service of a battery of six pieces; but the principles laid down in the following maneuvres will equally apply to a battery of four, or even of two pieces; and also to one of eight or ten pieces. Two or three small companies may be united for the service of a battery of six or more pieces. In this case, a field officer would command the battery; the senior captain would command the first section; the next in rank the third section; and so on.
The fifth in rank is always to command the line of caissons. Supernumeray officery to be assigned to the command of pieces or sections of caissons.
SCHOOL OF THE BATTERY.
In foot-artillery, the gunners and matrosses march in file, on each side of the piece, preserving their posts, as directed in the School of the Gunner
In horse-artillery, they form in two ranks in rear of the piece, as directed in the School of the Piece.
When the battery is formed in line or in battery, its right is always the same, viz., that of a man standing in front of the battery with his back towards the pieces; but, in the movements, the right and left is always taken in regard to the drivers, and not to the pieces. Wheeling-about must always be by pieces, to the left.
The alignment is made on the drivers of the wheel-horses. For parade, it may be made more correctly by the axletrees of the pieces.
In line, the horses of the caissons front as those of the pieces; but, in battery, the reverse, except when formed in retreat, or firing to the rear.
There are two sorts of movements—the movement in advancing, and the movement in retreat. In the first, each piece precedes its caisson; in the second, each caisson precedes its piece. What is executed by the pieces in the first, applies to the caissons in the second. In each of these movements, either the right or left may be in front.
In maneuvring, the movements of the caissons are regulated by those of their pieces, and by the orders of the officer of the train.
For manæuvring, the battery will be formed either in line, or in column of sections, or half-batteries.
Column of pieces (or single file) is never to be used hut in passing a defile, or on a march, or moving into or out of park.
A piece or caisson passing another must always move to the right, leaving it on its left.
The prolonge is always to be used for maneuvring in presence of an enemy. In all the exercises of firing, therefore, it must be considered as fixed; but, when the captain is certain that it will not be necessary to form in battery, but merely to conform the movements to those of the troops with which he is acting, he will cause the pieces to be limbered, to spare his horses and save the prolonge. The words of command are the same in both cases.
A piece with four horses, and its prolonge extended, occupies forty-four feet, and this interval must be preserved between the pieces in line.*
The cautionary word Attention, which should precede all movements, is always to be given by the captain, and is not to be repeated by any
The chiefs of each section give the words of command which particularly apply to their sections, and also repeat the general words of command for executing any manœuvre when the battery is in column.
The officer of the train gives the general word of command for the line of caissons, and the senior non-commissioned officer of each section of caissons gives the word which particularly applies to those two caissons.
As in infantry and in cavalry, when the right is in front, the guide is on the left; and the reverse.
FORMATION OF THE BATTERY. ist. IN LINE. 2d. IN BATTERY. 3d. IN COLUMN. 4th. FOR PARADE.
1st. IN LINE. (Pl. X. Fig. 1.) The pieces are on a line, axletree to axletree, with intervals between them equal to the length of the piece, which vary according to the calibers, number of horses, and according as the pieces are limbered or have their prolonges fixed.
* With twn horses, the interval would be thirty-two feet.