Blast from the Past: unexploded artillery shell found on Little Round Top in Gettysburg

09 February 2023- Portions of the Gettysburg National Military Park have been off limits to tourists and history buffs for a time now with massive renovations taking place at famous sites like Devil’s Den and Little Round Top. Work stopped abruptly, however, earlier this week when unexploded ordinance from the battle over 159 years ago.

The 55th Ordnance Disposal Company EOD (explosive ordnance disposal) team from Fort Belvoir, VA (U.S. Army) safely removed the shell before it was destroyed off-site. Luckily for us the EOD team was able to clean off the shell before it was taken away so the National Park Service could photograph the find.

Little Round Top, where the renovations are taking place and the shell was found, was a pivotal part of the battle occurring on the second day of fighting. Held by then Colonel Joshua Chamberlain of the Union Army, the hill was vital to hold back a Confederate flanking maneuver that could have been disastrous to Union forces. According to the park, the shell came from either a 10lb Parrot Rifle or a 3″ Ordinance Rifle.

All pictures are courtesy of the National Parks Service, Gettysburg National Military Park.