Clifton Hill Shot Tower – Clifton Hill, Australia - Atlas Obscura
THE GASTRO OBSCURA BOOK An eye-opening journey through the history, culture, and places of the culinary world. Just released! The Gastro Obscura book is here! Order Now

Clifton Hill Shot Tower

Clifton Hill, Australia

The largest shot tower in Australia is a unique reminder of industrial ammunitions history. 

134
78

At 263 feet tall, Clifton Hill Shot Tower vies with Taroona Shot Tower as the tallest in the world. Built in 1882, it is also the oldest of two remaining towers in Melbourne. The other is Coop’s Shot Tower, which now houses a museum dedicated to the history of Melbourne and shot production.

In the 19th century, shot towers were the most efficient mode of producing ammunition. Though ingenious, the technique was surprisingly analog: workers would ascend the precarious spiraling staircase to a small pavilion at the top of the tower.

From there, they would drop a ball of molten lead through a copper sieve into a basin of water at the bottom of the tower. The fall would cool and shape the lead into shot pellets. This method was used until the early 1960s, when a manufacturing style that required significantly less tower supplanted it.

Want to see fewer ads? Become a Member.
From Around the Web