Old Brickell Cannon, Greenville
The Brickell Cannon was placed to commemorate the bicentennial of the United States. The twelve-pound cannon sits on a wooden naval gun carriage. The iron cannon was cast in England between 1760 and 1770.
OLD BRICKELL CANNON / BRITISH, 1770’S / ONE OF THE CANNON WITH WHICH / PITT COUNTY RESIDENT JOSEPH BRICKELL / ARMED HIS TRADING VESSELS / ABOUT 1797 FOR DEFENSE AGAINST / FRENCH ENCROACHMENTS ON / AMERICAN COMMERCE.
PLACED IN 1976 AT THE / GREENVILLE TOWN COMMON / BY THE / PITT COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY, INC., / IN COMMEMORATION OF / THE BICENTENNIAL OF THE / UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
Greenville City Recreation and Parks
October 29, 1976
35.615330 , -77.371940 View in Geobrowse
"May 1-14, 1985. Darn Younguns Set Off the Blamed Thing Again!: A History of Brickell Cannon," from Roger Krammerer’s “Pitt’s Past” Column, Joyner Library, East Carolina University, (accessed July 11, 2016) Link
Raynor, Jerry. “18th Century Cannon Dedicated,” The Daily Reflector (Greenville, NC), October 29, 1976, 1
“Old Brickell Cannon, 3D model using Photoscan,” Sketchfab.com, (accessed July 11, 2016) Link
“Old Brickell Cannon-Greenville NC,” Waymarking.com, (accessed July 11, 2016) Link
“Recreation And Park Facilities,” Greenville North Carolina, (accessed September 2, 2016) Link
Cast iron, wood
Pitt County Historical Society and Greenville Jaycees
During the dedication ceremony Dr. Joseph Congleton, President of the Pitt County Historical Society, gave a brief history of the cannon. He noted that it was fitting the cannon was next to the Tar River and pointing east to downstream as “So much of our strength and so many of our troubles came from downstream.” Greenville Jaycees president, Michael Peters, presented the cannon to the citizens of Greenville and Pitt County. It was accepted on behalf of the county by Pitt County Commissioners Chairman, Burney L. Tucker and on behalf of Greenville by Mayor Percy Cox. Spectators were noted as being of all ages and races. Music was provided by the J.H. Rose High School Marching Band.
Joseph Brickell is said to have used this twelve-pound cannon, made between 1760 and 1770, on his trading vessels during the late eighteenth century. During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the cannon was used to mark important events in Pitt County.
Twelve-pound relates to the weight of the cannon ball. This size would have been small when used on a ship as some naval cannon shot was over forty-pounds.
The memorial is located on the Town Commons at 105 E. 1st Street in Greenville, NC, as part of and next to the Veterans Memorial complex. Other memorials at this location include a Fallen Soldier memorial, World War One, World War Two, Korean War memorial, Vietnam and Iraqi Freedom memorial, and a Millennial Sundial.
The Town Common features 21 acres of open green space located adjacent to the Uptown Greenville District. The Town Common is connected to the South Greenville Greenway by paved walk-ways, the Town Creek Bridge, a 1500-foot river walk and WWI Memorial Bridge along the Tar River.
Annual Memorial Day, July 4th and Veterans Day activities take place on the Town Commons.