Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Overall (framed case): 2ft 8 1/4in. x 3in. x 1ft 9in. (81.92 x 7.62 x 53.34cm)
Models, both probably mainly wood, with metal fixtures, possibly aluminum or brass; case, wood, with plexiglass cover; backing, paper, with water color picture
This framed case contains a pair of models of Congreve war rockets, such as were used by the British Army and Navy during the early 19th century. They are shown against a water color copy of a plate from William Congreve's (later Sir William), "The Details of the Rocket System" (London, 1814). In the book this plate is titled "The Mode of Using Rockets in Bombardment from Earth Works, without Apparatus."
Both models are of experimental, multiple tube rockets which are not known to have been used in combat. They would have been Congreve's 8-inch or 300-pounder rockets, which were apparently not found practicable for battle since they were expensive, difficult to make and transport, and did not range more than his standard rockets. They are a 1977 gift to the Smithsonian by Royal Arsenal in Woolwich, England.
Gift of the Royal Arsenal, Woolwich, England