The 12-pound Mountain Howitzer
The 12-pound Mountain Howitzer saw more frontier service than any other artillery gun. The lightweight bronze tube mounted on a prairie carriage made it portable and practical for rough terrain. In mountainous country, the mountain howitzer could be disassembled and transported by three mules or horses. One horse or mule carried the tube (cannon), the carriage was carried on another mule, and the ammunition was carried on a third.
Although it was disliked by artillery because of it's size and range, it was prized by the infantry and cavalry as being a lightweight and quickly advanced artillery piece. Since it required fewer horses or mules than a 4 or 6 horse hitch, cavalry used it as a mainstay in their mounted artillery units. Since it was a 12 pounder piece, it shot the same ammunition (solid, case and canister) as a Napoleon and field howitzer.
The mountain howitzer accompanied troops into the field, seeing valuable service all the way from the 1840s in the war against in Mexico, the Civil War and the Indian wars with the Apaches, the Nez Perce, and the Modocs of the 1870s.