April 1837. Illustrated manuscript. Square 8vo (8 1/4 x 6 7/8 inches). (4, title page and index), 313 pp. 30 pen-and-ink illustrations, some full-page, 22 with full coloring, four with color highlighting; numerous tables. An appealing manuscript, probably completed by Menzies as a senior project or paper at military school (he graduated from the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich in 1837 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in May of that year). Chapters include General Construction for Brass Guns, for Iron Guns, Spiking Ordnance, General Rules for Elevating Field Guns, Examining & Proving Ordnance, Guaging Shot and Shells, Ricochet Firing, A Detail of Equipment for Field Batteries, and Remarks on Military Law. The expertly rendered drawings depict the general construction of iron guns, the horizontal boring machine at the Royal Arsenal in Woolwich, copper molds for driving rockets, a cartridge filler, a Gibraltar Gyn, etc. Engraved bookplate on front pastedown. Front joint cracking, but very good. Contemporary black half-leather and marbled boards, gilt title "Artillery" on spine.(9787). Item #62068
William Collier Menzies was a career British officer in the Royal Engineers, a 2nd Lt. by May, 1837. He had followed his father, Gen. Charles Menzies (1783-1866), commander of the Royal Marine Artillery from 1838-1844, into service. The younger Menzies was in the Office of Ordnance in 1838, with the rank of 1st Lt.; he was promoted to captain in 1846, to colonel by 1869 (commanding the Royal Engineers, 1875-1877), and to Lt. Gen. and commanding the Department of North Britain in 1881 (also retiring in that year). All of his service was in the British Isles and he died in 1890 as General, Royal Engineers. The Royal Military Academy at Woolwich was charged with training British artillery officers and engineers (Sandhurst graduates generally serving in the infantry and cavalry); it closed in 1939 and the responsibilities were merged with those at Sandhurst following World War II.