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Old April 15, 2005, 12:17 AM   #1
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Join Date: December 24, 1999
Location: College Station, Texas
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What type of rifle was used in 1820's Texas?

I am looking for the type of rifle that would have been common in Texas in the 1820's and 1830's. My guess is the Kentucky Rifle, but in what caliber?

I would also like to know if there is anyplace out there that would sell kits or complete rifles of this type.

Other questions I have about general firearms maintenance of the period are:

1. How did they keep the rifle from rusting (i.e.: What kind of oil did they use?)

2. What other accessories would have been common?

3. What types of wood would have been employed in making the stocks?

4. Were handguns common then or was it mainly rifles that were in use by common folks?
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Old April 15, 2005, 09:28 AM   #2
Mike Irwin
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
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Most Pennsylvania Long Rifles were in the .40 to .50 caliber range.

Exact calibers were often variable, as each gun was hand made, as were the bullet molds that went along with them.

Accompanying accessories would have included devices for carrying and measuring powder (horn, metal or wood flask, etc.), a knife for trimming patch material, patches, grease, flints (caps likely wouldn't be regularly seen this early), and assorted other small items, as well as a bag for carrying all of that.

Any oil or grease would have been used, as available. Remember, these were the days before oil wells. My guess, though, is that beeswax would have been a common metal protectant. Rubbed onto the metal while it was warm, and then buffed off, it probably would have offered pretty decent protection.

Lots of Pennsylvania Long Rifles were stocked with maple. It's a hard, dense wood with straight grain. Walnut, I don't know how common that was at the time, but I suspect that the trees were used more for their fruit and furniture than they were for stocking guns.
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Old April 17, 2005, 10:28 PM   #3
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Thanks a bunch!
Now if I can find out where to get a pretty good replica I'll be on my way. I'll take that question to BP/CAS forum.
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Old April 21, 2005, 12:06 PM   #4
Join Date: February 22, 2005
Location: Mobile, AL
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The Hawkens rifle and Harper Ferry Model were also from that time period however I dont know if they would have been used in Texas. Navy Arms made replicas of the Kentucky rifle as well as other guns of that time period as does Taylor's & Co, Inc. and are websites where you should be able to find information on replicas. Also Cabela's sells replicas but I don't know if they are working models.
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