Ind. man finds artifact cannonball in sewer

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May 15, 2013, 10:31 am
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(NECN/NBC: Erin Meyer) - Shawn Fulkerson can tell you, when you explore city sewers for a living you never know what you'll run into.

"Oh, I've found soccer balls, kick balls, concrete blocks, cell phones."

Last week though, he made a discovery to top them all, 15 feet underground.

Shawn was down this old sewer line clearing out a pipe when all of a sudden...

"The water washed all the debris away and there was a cannonball. I had looked at pictures of 'em on the internet before and I was pretty sure that's what it was."

So once Shawn made his discovery he couldn't wait to show it off, but first he had to get out of this sewer with this cannonball and a pry bar. No easy feat. He had to be hand-cranked out!"

And when he made it up, it didn't take long for word to spread.

Cannelton, Ind. Mayor Mary Snyder says Shawn's find is making the rounds around Perry County.

"It's exciting, isn't it? To think you could actually find a memento from the Civil War days,” said Snyder. “Had a neighbor from Tell City call and tell me don't be drilling it in and don't be sanding on it because it just might explode."

"How it got there, Lord only knows," said Fulkerson.

That we'll likely never know. But Shawn's got an idea where this cannonball came from.

"There was supposed to have been a union gunboat firing back onto Hawesville. And Hawesville had confederate troops trying to get over to take over the cotton mill."

However it happened, this history buff's just happy he's the one who happened upon it.

"It's definitely a dirty job, but sometimes you find something worth keeping, I guess."

That cannonball has since been turned over to the Perry County Museum.

Tags: indiana, cannonball, Erin Meyer, artifact
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