MAS-6105BA: MAS-6105BA; Cornwall; Firearm; Image 1 of 3

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Unique ID: MAS-6105BA

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

This gun is a QF (quick firing) 6-pounder Hotchkiss, a light 2.25 inch (57 mm) naval and coastal defence gun from the late 19th century. The design appears to be pre-1890 as it does not have the recoil system that was introduced at that time. The original 1885 Mk I was a built-up gun with a vertical sliding-block breech. The name comes from the French manufacturing company, Hotchkiss, who were the major supplier of light QF guns in the world. This type of gun became a standard torpedo defence weapon; many navies bought this same type of gun (Friedman 2011).


This gun was ship mounted and from the location given may have come from the French merchant vessel, SS Saint Andre, a 2457 tons French, screw-driven cargo steamer. In France in 1915, it was decided to arm merchant ships with guns against U-boats. Initially, small naval guns were used, with French steamers of more than 500 tons being issued with two guns with a calibre of 90 mm or more in three stages. First, all ships were armed with at least one gun. These small-calibre guns (47 mm, 57 mm, 65 mm) were then replaced with one more powerful gun. Finally, all steamers were armed with a gun more powerful than 90 mm. In a two-year period between 1916 and 1918, over 1600 merchant ships received one gun and another 400 received a second (Friedman 2011).

SS Saint Andre was built by Ateliers & Chantiers de France, a company founded in 1880, in Dunkerque in 1907 as Yard No. 46. On 19 December 1917, SS Saint Andre was on a voyage from Rouen, France, to Algiers, Algeria, with a cargo of empty casks and barrels, when it was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine UB-58, commanded by Kapitänleutnant Werner Fürbringer, nine miles southwest of the Eddystone Lighthouse, Devon. At the time of sinking the vessel was owned by Société Navale de l'Ouest, Le Havre. Saint Andre now lies in approximately 70 m of water. NRHE and Cornwall HER reference numbers cited within this record refer to the wreck of SS Saint Andre. Due to the ambiguity of the gun having come from the wreck of SS Saint Andre, the chronology of the find is broader.

Class: Armour and weapons
Sub class: Projectile weapon

Subsequent actions

Current location of find: With finder
Subsequent action after recording: Submitted as wreck to the Receiver of Wreck

Wreck details

Droit number: 150/16


Period to: MODERN
Date from: Circa AD 1885
Date to: Circa AD 1950

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Friday 1st July 2016

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: M F
Identified by: V L

Other reference numbers

NRHE monument number: 1257850
Other reference: Cornwall HER Number: SX 33 SE 77
Droit ID: 150/16

Materials and construction

Primary material: Steel
Secondary material: Iron
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

County or Unitary authority: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: SX1707
Four figure Latitude: 49.93511828
Four figure longitude: -4.55145117
1:25K map: SX1707
1:10K map: SX19NE
Display four figure position on What3Words
Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Fishing
Discovery circumstances: Fishing
Current location: With finder
General landuse: Coastland
Specific landuse: Marine

References cited

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: MAS
Created: Monday 25th July 2016
Updated: Friday 26th August 2016

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