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  • Devil's Den

Artillery fuse recovered at “Devil's Den”, Gettysburg, Rosensteel collection


Product Description

This is another unique piece being offered, it is part of an artillery fuse from a Schenkl shell. Thousands of Schenkl shells were fired by Union guns at Gettysburg, and this fuse was from one of those shells which exploded in Devil’s Den.

It was recovered in Gettysburg during the first half of the 20th century. Local collector and relic hunter John Cullison recovered this piece in the area of the battlefield known as “The Valley of Death”. The official name of the creek running through the Valley of Death between Devils Den and Little Round Top is Plum Run, but it gained a second name after the slow stream ran red with the blood of fallen soldiers for a few hours in July 1863.

With the heavy rain on July 4th, 1863, it overflowed the banks and drowned some wounded men who hadn't been collected yet – reportedly all Confederates. The valley was littered with so many bodies that it was over a week after the battle ended before the fallen men could all be buried. These relics eventually went from John Cullison’s collection to the Gettysburg Rosensteel collection.

The Rosensteel Collection is arguably the most famous collection of Gettysburg relics that have ever existed. John Rosensteel opened his Round Top Museum of Gettysburg artifacts in 1888. The collection, which grew in size as a variety of local collections, such as Cullison’s, were acquired and became the nucleus of the Electric Map Museum collection and ultimately the Gettysburg National Park Museum and Visitor Center collection.

A 1964 advertisement for the Gettysburg National Museum (Electric Map Museum) notes that the John Cullison collection was part of the museum holdings. This Gettysburg artifact not only has wonderful provenance, but it was also found at one of the most famous locations on the battlefield!

This fuse is exactly as it came out of the ground, never been cleaned, or coated. It is difficult to find pieces such as this today with such a solid Gettysburg origin of “Devil’s Den”. It comes in the glass top display case pictured.

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$6.50 (Fixed shipping cost)