Brown Bess vs Baker Rifle

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by GinSlinger, Oct 2, 2003.

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  1. GinSlinger

    GinSlinger Member

    Dec 27, 2002
    Hill Country, Texas
    I am writing a term paper for my military history class (Napoleonic Wars) on the British use of rifles. I am using as much source material as possible, and as such I am looking for some first-hand observations from anyone who may have fired both a India Pattern Brown Bess replica and a Baker Rifle replica. If anyone here has, or can put me in touch with someone who has, I will mail a questionaire/interview complete with return postage in exchange for allowing me to cite them.

    Thank you,
  2. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 19, 2002
    Check out Aug. 2003 edition of Muzzle Blasts Magazine. There's an article in there about Jackson whupping the British. Among the British troops was the 3/95 (3rd Battalion, 95th Rifles). You might find it a good read.

    A good (Revolutionary War) book is "Devil of a Whipping" by Lawrence Babbit (sp). He examines the Battle of Cowpens where Ol' Daniel Morgan whupped Col. Banastre Tarleton & his British Legion. Lawrence has a lengthy discussion about the Brown Bess, it's accuracy and contrasts it against George Hanger's oft quoted statement about a soldier's musket being ill bored and how he doubts if anyone aimed at from 200 yards distance was ever hit. Babbit's book is good to get more perspective and "personal" insights into the Brown Bess.

    I hope you've read Surtees "Twenty-Five Years in the Rifle Brigade" for a good account of training with the Baker Rifle. It's available at bookstores or probably your library. Don't overlook E. Baker's own book, "Remarks on the Rifle-Gun" and it's available through second-hand (as opposed to underhand) booksellers. It's a must read if you want info on the Baker. Modernly, DeWitt Bailey's "British Military Flintlock Rifles" is perhaps the modern book on British rifles of the era.
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