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Civil War killers
#1
There are scores of Civil War battlefields one can visit in the US.  Almost all have relics for sale.  They are, after all, all over the place.  Here are three: a 58 caliber minie, a 69 caliber minie and a chunk of shrapnel.  If you look closely you can see the concave shape.  This looks like a six pounder chunk to me, which  means it was fired by a Confederate field piece.  Very few six pounders were used by the Union forces.  These were found on the Fredricksburg battlefield, a huge Confederate victory.

I cannot think of a rifled .69 caliber musket, except possibly for a French one.  I guess, therefore; that they loaded conical bullets in smooth bore muskets.  On the inside of the .58 bullet is "US" saying, I guess; that the United States sent each round on it's way.[Image: GunStuff033.jpg]
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#2
The smoothbore US Musket in .69 calibre was converted by rifling in large numbers and used during the Civil War.

The British also rifled their .753 smoothbore percussion muskets Pattern 1842 into .758 Miniés and referred to them as Altered Pattern 1842 Rifle Muskets.  They were used by the Marines and shortened versions with 30 inch barrels were used by the sailors during the Crimean War.

The French converted their 1822 Flint Muskets into Percussion during the 1840s and designated them Mle 1822 T.  These were then shortened two inches and rifled in the 1860s and designated Mle 1822 T Bis (Transformed Twice).  Their new made percussion muskets Model 1842 were also shortened two inches and rifled with Pillar (or Tige) Breeches in time for the Crimean War and designated Mle 1842 T.  By 1860 these had the pillars taken out and became Minié Rifles.

Similar operations were carried out extensively throughout Europe pending the general tendency to copy the Enfield Pattern 1853 in some form or another.
W. S. (Bill) Curtis
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#3
Quote:The smoothbore US Musket in .69 calibre was converted by rifling in large numbers and used during the Civil War.

The British also rifled their .753 smoothbore percussion muskets Pattern 1842 into .758 Miniés and referred to them as Altered Pattern 1842 Rifle Muskets.  They were used by the Marines and shortened versions with 30 inch barrels were used by the sailors during the Crimean War.

The French converted their 1822 Flint Muskets into Percussion during the 1840s and designated them Mle 1822 T.  These were then shortened two inches and rifled in the 1860s and designated Mle 1822 T Bis (Transformed Twice).  Their new made percussion muskets Model 1842 were also shortened two inches and rifled with Pillar (or Tige) Breeches in time for the Crimean War and designated Mle 1842 T.  By 1860 these had the pillars taken out and became Minié Rifles.

Similar operations were carried out extensively throughout Europe pending the general tendency to copy the Enfield Pattern 1853 in some form or another.

I recall being offered one of the French .69's rifled and converted to percussion.  The rifle was like new, cost was $60, but at the time might as well have been a million.  I have not seen one since.

The American 1842 precussion conversion of the 1816 flinter were usually smooth bore, mine is, but I think some were rifled.
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#4
The sound of the shrapnel twisting through the air must have made a terrifying sound.  A minie ball makes a pretty loud buzz too.  I've stood behind firing lines when guys were shooting minie's just to listen to them as they buzz down range.  To stand there as they were coming and going close by took some nerve!
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#5
Over 14,000 U.S. 1842 muskets were rifled by the national armorys, (with over 10,000 of those fitted with long range sights).  Add to this over 20,000 Maynard conversions of the U.S. 1816 musket, and another 5,000 various other rifled conversions of U.S. .69 alone, then add foreign rifled .69s, (probably around 200,000-250,000) and we come up with a rather common arm issued to Volunteer Regiments.   

On January 2, 1863, the 11th. Pennsylvania Infantry turned in their .57 and .58 rifled muskets for U.S. 1842 .69 rifled muskets with long range sights.  These are the arms used on July 1 at Gettysburg to quite literally "mow down" Iverson's North Carolina brigade who marched into the trap as if on parade.  The spot is known as "Iverson's Pits" for the North Carolina troops who were burried there in long pits, row upon row, just as they fell.
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#6
Quote:Over 14,000 U.S. 1842 muskets were rifled by the national armorys, (with over 10,000 of those fitted with long range sights).  Add to this over 20,000 Maynard conversions of the U.S. 1816 musket, and another 5,000 various other rifled conversions of U.S. .69 alone, then add foreign rifled .69s, (probably around 200,000-250,000) and we come up with a rather common arm issued to Volunteer Regiments.  I am not questioning your post and thank you.  

On January 2, 1863, the 11th. Pennsylvania Infantry turned in their .57 and .58 rifled muskets for U.S. 1842 .69 rifled muskets with long range sights.  These are the arms used on July 1 at Gettysburg to quite literally "mow down" Iverson's North Carolina brigade who marched into the trap as if on parade.  The spot is known as "Iverson's Pits" for the North Carolina troops who were burried there in long pits, row upon row, just as they fell.

I thought that the carnage at Gettysburg was caused by massed fire by Union artillery which was placed along the long side of the "Fish Hook" and on Little Round Top.  However, I do not know where "Iverson's Pits" is located so they may have indeed been slaughtered by long range rifle fire.  Here's my converted 1816 musket in .69 caliber.  It is smoothbore.[Image: MoregunsJSmithandJohnJ098.jpg]
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#7
Old Hickory: when I purchased these two minie balls they were arrayed in a bin. There were hundreds of them, all picked up at Fredricksburg.  There were many .69 caliber bullets, both minie balls and round.  There were also some smaller balls, so some folks were shooting "buck and ball", these loads were always shot in .69 caliber weapons, probably smooth bore, I suspect by Southern troops.   
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#8
Interestingly, Civil War soldiers were ordered to "shoot low", since they tended to shoot high and over the heads of their querry.  So, being good soldiers they shot low and most wounds were in the lower belly and growing.  A very deadly place to be wounded.  OUCH!

When you see photos of the dead you see their trousers torn open and their shirt tails pulled out.  This was not caused by other soldiers rummaging through their pockets, but rather by the victim himself inspecting his wound.  If in the belly he'd just lay back and wait for the end, knowing the wound was fatal. A hit in the arm or leg might not kill, but a hit in the head or guts was curtains.
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#9
Quote:[quote]

I thought that the carnage at Gettysburg was caused by massed fire by Union artillery which was placed along the long side of the "Fish Hook" and on Little Round Top.  However, I do not know where "Iverson's Pits" is located so they may have indeed been slaughtered by long range rifle fire.  Here's my converted 1816 musket in .69 caliber.  It is smoothbore.


The action that caused the destruction of Iverson's Brigade happened to the West of Gettysburg on July 1, 1863 (the first day of the battle) near the "railroad cut".   The Union brigade of which the 11th was a part hid behind a stone wall waiting for Iverson's men to parade to within close range, (Iverson was drunk and in the rear, his brigade didn't even deploy skirmishers).  The Federals rose and fired when the Southerners got within 80 yards, mowing them down in formation.  Today, the 11th's memorial stands at the wall where they sprung the trap on Iverson's men.  July 2&3 were the days the artillery had their hands full. 

The .69 smoothbores were common on both sides, the Irish Brigade turned theirs in late in the war, only when ordered to do so.  Buck&ball proved deadly in the hands of either side. 
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#10
I would just like to mention that some of these rifled .69 muskets can be found and had at very good prices these days compared to U.S. M1861-1863 rifle mskets.  The 1816 Maynard conversions in particular, $1400-$1800 will buy an example in very fine condition.
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