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The AMERICAN SOCIETY OF ARMS COLLECTORS was founded in 1953 to promote the preservation, study, and sharing of information on collectable firearms, edged weapons and accoutrements. Meetings are held twice annually where members gather to share their interests, collections and present scholarly papers on subjects of interest. Meeting locations vary and are hosted by local members who arrange tours of local museums, historical sites and other venues of interest.
Looking Back (and Forward) This issue marks the start of our eighth year of publication. When we started, very few people felt that an on-line magazine could succeed. We chose that format because, starting from a zero subscriber base, there was no way we could enter the realm of paper magazine—our limited resources prohibited it. While we wish we could have a larger audience, the reality is that many arms enthusiasts are older and many eschew the use of computers. As media technology...
Franford Arsenal conducted an extensive series of experiments with metallic cartridges from 1860 to 1873, including the Crispin wrapped metal case. Maj. T. J. Treadwell reported that the 1867 experiments used cartridges consisting of a .002”-thick strip of brass, hand rolled with paper. Using two turns of metal and three of paper, this puts a layer of the latter inside the case to minimize corrosion from the powder.
IN A WORLD WHERE COLLECTIBLE ARMS CAN REACH SIX FIGURES IN VALUE THERE ARE, BELIEVE IT OR NOT, AREAS OF COLLECTING THAT ARE STILL AFFORDABLE. THIS COLUMN WILL REGULARLY FEATURE AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION THAT ARE INEXPENSIVE, FUN, CHALLENGING AND HIGHLY REWARDING IN COLLECTOR SATISFACTION.
We all make mistakes. We’re only human, after all. We are especially mistake-prone when we try to do something for the first time, but mistakes still happen when we are doing something we’ve done many times before, even when we’ve gone to great efforts to avoid them. This was true with the Colt Patent Firearms Company when they marked serial numbers on their percussion-period revolvers. Overstruck numbers and even up-side-down numbers are common, but this article is about a different kind of...
The Palmetto Rifle, (Figure 1), and the short-lived Palmetto Armory (1851-1853) were a direct result of the Secession Crisis of 1850 and the victory of the “Fire Eater” Radicals in the South Carolina elections of 1850.
The maker of the unique Needham Patent American breech loading musket conversions has long been a mystery. They are well known for their use by the Irish-American Fenian Brotherhood in their aborted invasion of Canada in 1871, but who made them had remained unknown. Now, a newly discovered example finally identifies the maker, and a connection with a famous firearms inventor. Also, a connection to use by U.S. militia has now been discovered.