The latter years of Poulton Chapel

23 May

Those who have been to Poulton will know that  Poulton Chapel became home to Oliver Cromwell’s troops during the English Civil War when they were billeted at  the Chapel. It would not have been used by the local population during this time and it’s likely that a fair bit of damage was done to it by the soldiers. In any event it fell into disrepair and became a ruin not long after the siege of Chester. We have unearthed a number of musket balls and, as you can see from the photos, they were not always made of lead. Some were rounded pebbles and they weren’t small either. They were likely to shatter on impact not only killing the poor soul who got in the way, but the shrapnel would have caused dreadful injuries to those in the immediate vicinity. Also pictured is a piece of black flint which , on close inspection, shows the strike marks around it’s edges . The flint would have been fastened into the cock hammer by means of a retaining screw. When the musket was loaded and primed the cock hammer was pulled half way back ( I guess that’s where the expression comes from ) and when ready to fire, the hammer was pulled all the way back. Once the trigger was pulled the hammer went down, the flint hit the strike plate and the resulting spark ignited the powder and ….boom !

Stone musket balls

Stone musket balls

Flint from a musket

Flint from a musket

 

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The same piece of flint on edge where the strike marks around its perimeter can clearly be seen

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