''Quaker'' Guns

  • American Civil War
  • 1 min

By Crusader1307

An often overlooked portion of American Civil War History, are the development and "use" of The Quaker Gun. Designed by The Confederate States of America as early as 1862, they were an effective part of early "psychological warfare". As previously discussed, The Confederacy was always desperate with regards to the materials of War. Hoping to break a very effective Northern Naval Blockade, meant little foreign imports of such. Further, finale resources meant production of such was problematic at best. Artillery was just as important as were small arms. And on this, The South had an ingenious idea.


In much of their Fortifications, Federal Scouts would advise against frontal Infantry assault, due to the over abundance of Rebel Artillery. The occasional exchange of shells between lines was obviously a welcome to "try". Later on The War, when many of these forward Forts were abandoned, was the "truth" learned. The vast majority of "Artillery" were fake. Called "Quaker Guns", in reference to the Pacifist religious Sect, The Quakers - soldiers would cut down trees and paint them black. Positioning in "active" defensive positions, such great care and detail was taken, that at a distance, they could not be differentiated from the "original". Often a Fort may only have a single Battery of Cannon (5 or 6 guns). Spread throughout the "fake" guns, the "illusion" was complete. Thus "tactic of deception" would be used in both future World Wars (in some form), by both Allies and Axis.