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Carbines and Fusils

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  • ronaldjdale@netscape.net
    A number of years ago I was looking at lists of stores in the arsenal at Quebec.?? There were a number of Black Muskets in stores just before the war.? These
    Message 1 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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      A number of years ago I was looking at lists of stores in the arsenal at Quebec.?? There were a number of "Black Muskets" in stores just before the war.? These later morphed into carbines and later?became India Pattern muskets.?? This all makes sense if the norm for the Canadas was still Short Land Pattern.? The India Pattern, originally for arming the East India Company army, could be referred to as a "Black Musket" not because of its colour but in reference to those expected to shoulder them.? The reference to carbine makes sense given the shorter barrel (39" vs 42").? However, whether or not these were ever issued to anyone other than Provincials or Militia escapes my memory.

      The Inspection Return for the 41st on Oct 11, 1809 indicates that there were no fusils issued to the regiment and that four were "wanting."? They were still "wanting" in the return of June 1810 but had been received by the time of the May 1811 return.? The 10th Royal Veterans showed that none were issued and none wanting in that regiment.

      In a?Return of Small Arms etc?at Fort George in June, 1812, ?the following are of interest:?

      1553 English Musquets
      1030 French Musquets
      16, 738 Flints Musquets
      60,000 English Musquet cartridge and ball
      140,000 French Musquet cartridge and ball
      666 Carbine Musquet cartridge and ball
      11.10 lbs of Dutch thread
      10.0 ditto of twine
      2, 140 Paper dozen sheets
      64, 200 English lead musquet balls

      French muskets are .69 calibre.? Obviously the carbine cartridges contain a ball that is neither .69 nor .75 calibre.?? No pistol balls are listed.

      Ron




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    • Jim Pierce
      Ron, I suspect the reference to Black Muskets probably referred to Sea Service Muskets that had been japanned . Japanning was a common Royal Navy practice
      Message 2 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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        Ron,

        I suspect the reference to "Black Muskets" probably referred to Sea Service
        Muskets that had been "japanned". Japanning was a common Royal Navy practice
        during the period for muskets borne aboard warships.



        Fair Winds,

        Jim Pierce
        "A drop of Nelson's Blood wouldn't do us any harm"





        >From: ronaldjdale@...
        >Reply-To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
        >To: WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com
        >Subject: [War Of 1812] Carbines and Fusils
        >Date: Thu, 06 Sep 2007 10:23:36 -0400
        >
        >A number of years ago I was looking at lists of stores in the arsenal at
        >Quebec.?? There were a number of "Black Muskets" in stores just before the
        >war.? These later morphed into carbines and later?became India Pattern
        >muskets.?? This all makes sense if the norm for the Canadas was still Short
        >Land Pattern.? The India Pattern, originally for arming the East India
        >Company army, could be referred to as a "Black Musket" not because of its
        >colour but in reference to those expected to shoulder them.? The reference
        >to carbine makes sense given the shorter barrel (39" vs 42").? However,
        >whether or not these were ever issued to anyone other than Provincials or
        >Militia escapes my memory.
        >
        >The Inspection Return for the 41st on Oct 11, 1809 indicates that there
        >were no fusils issued to the regiment and that four were "wanting."? They
        >were still "wanting" in the return of June 1810 but had been received by
        >the time of the May 1811 return.? The 10th Royal Veterans showed that none
        >were issued and none wanting in that regiment.
        >
        >In a?Return of Small Arms etc?at Fort George in June, 1812, ?the following
        >are of interest:?
        >
        >1553 English Musquets
        >1030 French Musquets
        >16, 738 Flints Musquets
        >60,000 English Musquet cartridge and ball
        >140,000 French Musquet cartridge and ball
        >666 Carbine Musquet cartridge and ball
        >11.10 lbs of Dutch thread
        >10.0 ditto of twine
        >2, 140 Paper dozen sheets
        >64, 200 English lead musquet balls
        >
        >French muskets are .69 calibre.? Obviously the carbine cartridges contain a
        >ball that is neither .69 nor .75 calibre.?? No pistol balls are listed.
        >
        >Ron
        >
        >
        >
        >
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        >
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      • J.Bruce Whittaker
        ... Service ... practice ... Greetings List, For those who may not know what japanning is: it was the painting wood or metal to copy the lacquer ware that
        Message 3 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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          --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Jim Pierce" <highlandpeat@...> wrote:
          >
          > Ron,
          >
          > I suspect the reference to "Black Muskets" probably referred to Sea
          Service
          > Muskets that had been "japanned". Japanning was a common Royal Navy
          practice
          > during the period for muskets borne aboard warships.

          Greetings List,
          For those who may not know what "japanning" is: it was the painting
          wood or metal to copy the lacquer ware that was coming from Japan
          during the period. It was usually black paint and varnish. It copied
          the look of the lacquer ware that was coming from Japan. The Japanese
          had the lacquer trees to make the lacquer finish but were not inclined
          to disclose the secret of its manufacture to the West. Or so I have
          been told. Of course it protected the muskets from rusting aboard ships.
          Regards,
          Bruce Whittaker
        • BritcomHMP@aol.com
          In a message dated 06/09/2007 10:22:26 Central Standard Time, ortheris@rogers.com writes: The Japanese had the lacquer trees to make the lacquer finish but
          Message 4 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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            In a message dated 06/09/2007 10:22:26 Central Standard Time,
            ortheris@... writes:

            The Japanese
            had the lacquer trees to make the lacquer finish but were not inclined
            to disclose the secret of its manufacture to the West. Or so I have
            been told. Of course it protected the muskets from rusting aboard ships.



            -------------------------------------------------

            This process was also used on metal sword scabbards on campaign. I have a
            very nice 1796 pattern Lt. Cavalry sword with a scabbard treated in this manner.
            I was extremely lucky in that when I bought it I was about to clean this off
            until I did a little research. Still that was 25 years ago!

            Cheers,

            Tim



            ************************************** Get a sneak peek of the all-new AOL at
            http://discover.aol.com/memed/aolcom30tour


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Dale Kidd
            Bruce, et al: If I may take your explanation a step further... The japanning on muskets was a coating which was brushed and then baked onto the metal parts.
            Message 5 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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              Bruce, et al:

              If I may take your explanation a step further...

              The japanning on muskets was a coating which was brushed and then
              baked onto the metal parts. When finished, it was shiny black in
              appearance, similar to the black laquered pottery imported from Japan.
              Sea Service muskets used by the Navy (except Marines, whose muskets
              were kept "in the white")often had all of the external steel except
              the pan cover japanned... barrel, lock plate/pan, hammer, trigger, and
              ramrod (on later model with steel rammer). In some cases, there is
              even evidence of brass fittings having been japanned as well.

              I am actually quite looking forward to getting myself a Sea Service
              pattern musket at some point down the road, and blackening the steel
              parts to a "japanned" black finish (though I will doubtless take the
              easy way out, and duplicate the effect with a modern heat-resistant
              spray paint). It should make maintaining the darn thing a great deal
              less onerous. In fact, if anyone has a good reliable Sea Service
              pattern Bess they're looking to dump, I'd be willing to trade a Third
              (India) Pattern for it.

              ~Dale

              PS. Bruce, it was great to finally meet you, and I look forward to
              seeing you again in the future.


              --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "J.Bruce Whittaker" <ortheris@...>
              wrote:
              > For those who may not know what "japanning" is: it was the painting
              > wood or metal to copy the lacquer ware that was coming from Japan
              > during the period. It was usually black paint and varnish. It copied
              > the look of the lacquer ware that was coming from Japan. The Japanese
              > had the lacquer trees to make the lacquer finish but were not
              inclined
              > to disclose the secret of its manufacture to the West. Or so I have
              > been told. Of course it protected the muskets from rusting aboard
              ships.
              > Regards,
              > Bruce Whittaker
              >
            • Patrick Schifferdecker
              The original formula for Barrel Black this was: To one gallon of vinegar add a quarter of a pound of iron rust, let it stand for one week; then add a pound of
              Message 6 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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                The original formula for Barrel Black this was: "To one gallon of
                vinegar add a quarter of a pound of iron rust, let it stand for one
                week; then add a pound of lamp black and three quarters of a pound
                of copperas; stir it up at intervals for a couple of days. Lay five
                to six coats on the gun with a sponge, allowing it to dry well
                between each application; polish with linseed oil and soft woollen
                rag; it will look like ebony."

                --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "Dale Kidd" <ucpm_gunner@...>
                wrote:
                >
                > Bruce, et al:
                >
                > If I may take your explanation a step further...
                >
                > The japanning on muskets was a coating which was brushed and then
                > baked onto the metal parts. When finished, it was shiny black in
                > appearance, similar to the black laquered pottery imported from
                Japan.
                > Sea Service muskets used by the Navy (except Marines, whose
                muskets
                > were kept "in the white")often had all of the external steel
                except
                > the pan cover japanned... barrel, lock plate/pan, hammer, trigger,
                and
                > ramrod (on later model with steel rammer). In some cases, there is
                > even evidence of brass fittings having been japanned as well.
                >
                > I am actually quite looking forward to getting myself a Sea
                Service
                > pattern musket at some point down the road, and blackening the
                steel
                > parts to a "japanned" black finish (though I will doubtless take
                the
                > easy way out, and duplicate the effect with a modern heat-
                resistant
                > spray paint). It should make maintaining the darn thing a great
                deal
                > less onerous. In fact, if anyone has a good reliable Sea Service
                > pattern Bess they're looking to dump, I'd be willing to trade a
                Third
                > (India) Pattern for it.
                >
                > ~Dale
                >
                > PS. Bruce, it was great to finally meet you, and I look forward to
                > seeing you again in the future.
                >
                >
                > --- In WarOf1812@yahoogroups.com, "J.Bruce Whittaker" <ortheris@>
                > wrote:
                > > For those who may not know what "japanning" is: it was the
                painting
                > > wood or metal to copy the lacquer ware that was coming from Japan
                > > during the period. It was usually black paint and varnish. It
                copied
                > > the look of the lacquer ware that was coming from Japan. The
                Japanese
                > > had the lacquer trees to make the lacquer finish but were not
                > inclined
                > > to disclose the secret of its manufacture to the West. Or so I
                have
                > > been told. Of course it protected the muskets from rusting
                aboard
                > ships.
                > > Regards,
                > > Bruce Whittaker
                > >
                >
              • ronaldjdale@netscape.net
                Thanks Jim amd Bruce, But the point is that the same muskets in stores were progressively known as black muskets, then carbines and finally India
                Message 7 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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                  Thanks Jim amd Bruce,



                  But the point is that the same muskets in stores were progressively known as "black muskets, " then "carbines" and finally India Patterns, if I recall correctly.? I will have to dig through my filing cabinet to refresh my memory on the exact reference.? If I recall, in the same batch of information was a reference to cutting down highland swords for issue to Provincial dragoons.



                  Ron




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                • Jim Pierce
                  But the point is that the same muskets in stores were progressively known as black muskets, then carbines and finally India Patterns, if I recall
                  Message 8 of 12 , Sep 6, 2007
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                    But the point is that the same muskets in stores were progressively known as "black muskets, " then "carbines" and finally India Patterns, if I recall correctly.?

                    Ron,

                    I, for one, would enjoy seeing the reference you have in your files. It may make things easier. As for my original assertion that I suspect the muskets you refer to as "black" being sea service models...I'll stand by that guess for now on the premise that Quebec is, after all, a port and Sea Services, while varying in length, did tend to be shorter than army issued muskets (could that account for them being referred to as carbines?).

                    As to the contention that they were India Pattern Bess's? They absolutely could be technically, as Sea Service patterns were really just simpler versions (less hardware etc) of the various Bess patterns.

                    Fair Winds,

                    Jim Pierce
                    "A drop of Nelson's Blood wouldn't do us any harm"

                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • ronaldjdale@netscape.net
                    My excavations into my files has begun and it seems that the files trump my aging memory. I see in a Return of Small Arms, etc., Quebec, June 30, 1812, (RG
                    Message 9 of 12 , Sep 7, 2007
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                      My excavations into my files has begun and it seems that the files trump my aging memory.



                      I see in a "Return of Small Arms, etc.," Quebec, June 30, 1812, (RG 8, C-386, p. 61) that there were 600 English Musquets, 660 Black Musquets,? and 521 Carbines in stores.?? Ammunition was of two types:? English musquet and Carbine.?Thus, my memory that the carbines were in fact India Patterns is proved mistaken.?? The carbines are a different calibre and the "Black" muskets are obviously the same calibre as the English musket.?? In May of that year, the Ordnance stores in Quebec had shipped off "Five hundred carbines directed to be browned on the barrels" to be shipped to the Canadian Voltigeurs.? (C-386, p. 50).



                      On November 24, 1813, the Ordnance Office?at Quebec reported? that they had in stores 170 French musquets, 6,551 English musquets, 958 Black musquets, and 190 carbines.? They also had almost 5,000 sets of buff accoutrements.

                      I have a note to the effect that India Patterns had been sent out and lodged in the Quebec Stores in the spring of 1813 and this led me to believe that the Black muskets were India Patterns.? However, I must keep digging to find a document on that.? In the meantime, they may very well have been sea service muskets that had been japanned.

                      Ron

                      ?

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                    • Larry Lozon
                      Patrick Schifferdecker wrote: The original formula for Barrel Black this was: To one gallon of vinegar add a quarter of a pound of iron rust, let it stand
                      Message 10 of 12 , Sep 7, 2007
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                        "Patrick Schifferdecker" wrote:

                        The original formula for Barrel Black this was: "To one gallon of
                        vinegar add a quarter of a pound of iron rust, let it stand for one
                        week; then add a pound of lamp black and three quarters of a pound
                        of copperas; stir it up at intervals for a couple of days. Lay five
                        to six coats on the gun with a sponge, allowing it to dry well
                        between each application; polish with linseed oil and soft woollen
                        rag; it will look like ebony."



                        Or for those who wear modern shoes and polyester uniforms


                        "Two coats of TREMCLAD (RUSTOEUM) Paint and a good coat of floor
                        paste wax"

                        Yrs.,
                        L2
                        PS: Or for those who wear modern shoes and polyester uniforms


                        Two coats of TREMCLAD (RUSTOEUM) Paint and a good coat of floor paste
                        wax

                        I was prodded into posting this

                        Yrs.,
                        L2
                        Or for those who wear modern shoes and polyester uniforms


                        Two coats of TREMCLAD (RUSTOEUM) Paint and a good coat of floor paste
                        wax



                        Yrs.,
                        L2
                        PS: I was prodded into posting this, but have used this method and it
                        works!
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