It might be like an offset drum where the fire was in the outer ring and the smoke draws inside and up the drum. Might have had a lid with a flue even
Be worth experimenting some. Don't get rid of it.
I don't want to hijack this thread though.
Jim - Another transplanted Texan
Former KCBS CBJ
Large and Medium Big Green Eggs , Black 18.5" WSM, Blue Weber Performer - Stainless, Green Weber OTG Kettle , Brinkmann SnP Pro, and a Stainless UDS. One retired Portable Kitchen grill.
Red Thermapen, Maverick ET-732, EdgePro Apex Sharpener.
Avatar is the original 1951 Weber Kettle