Ezra Curry retrieved this grenade fragment from a French battlefield while he was serving with the ambulance corps. A grenadier, a soldier whose job was to bomb trenches with grenades, would run past a trench and quickly throw grenades into every dugout he passed. The intent was to kill enemy soldiers or frighten them into surrender.
Grenades were detonated in two ways: by percussion (when they hit something) or by a timed fuse. The idea of pulling a pin out of a grenade to activate the timed fuse became more common in World War I.