Did you know the cannons in Hopewell Cape were not always painted the drab grey they are now, but multi-coloured in bright greens, browns and even orange? Quite often the camouflage used in World War One was not solely used to hide something, but to make it more difficult to determine its true distance and range for artillery bombardment. The term was Dazzle Camouflage, and it was developed to counter the newly devised optical (coincidence) range finder.
In 1890, US Navy Rear Admiral Bradley Fiske was granted a patent for an optical device that was to have enormous implications for both naval and land-based warfare in the next several decades: the range-finder.
Prior to the advent of the coincidence range-finder, deciding how high or low to elevate your guns in order to hit a distant target usually meant having to guess how far away it was. But thanks to Fiske's range-finder device, you could now determine precisely how far away an enemy ship was before wasting your first salvo. So how did the Coincidence Range Finder work and how did Dazzle Camouflage counter it? Come back next week for the answer.
Now that's a story worth exploring!
The Victory Cannon Campaign is raising funds to restore the two captured World War One cannons situated in the square in Hopewell Cape. These cannons were captured by Canadians during the Great War, and were awarded to the people of Albert County. You can donate online to the Victory Cannon Campaign here, and best of all you'll be sent a tax receipt! Click Here to Donate!