>US troops were told to "TAKE AIM". In the Northwest, when relieved from guard'Tis true, the colonial rebel always did have an air of independence about
>duty, soldiers were required to discharge their muskets at a target to improve
>their aim. the closest to the centre mark was rewarded with an extra gill of
>whiskey. Whether US troops, in general, were better marksmen for this, I have
him that was wholly without fashion. :-) :-) :-) :-)
When a US trooper was told to take aim was is in the literal sense or was
it with a note to taking a particular target into account to fire on. I'm
not sure but I wonder if this command was more with regards to aiming your
weapon in the general direction of the enemy. Any thoughts?
My reasoning is that aiming seriously reduces speed in line firing and
speed is what counts at this point. I can understand aiming in an
individual or pair firing scenario as it is more accuracy that counts then.
In a line situation there is so much smoke created after the first few
volleys that you would have no enemy to take aim at.
Also I thought the American soldier really became effective when they
adopted European fighting styles under the command of Winfield Scott in the
Niagara. Up to this point in the war the Americans were generally beaten
when it came to a line to line fire fight (this is an "in general"
statement as I'm sure people can come up with several instances that would
contradict this). It was a source of pride for Americans to say that they
were able to stand up and faced the best equiped, best trained, most
disciplined army the world had to offer and do so with marked skill and
As for them being better marksmen for this, I too can not say. The British
army did the most live fire practice of ANY army of the period which was
one of the main contributors to them being the best army in the field. I'm
sure the rifle regiment and most likely the light infantry did their live
fire practice with targets in mind as well although I personally don't have
any info on this...
Lance Corporal Sean Hirst
Royal Newfoundland Reg't, Lt. Coy