A 9 page paper that relates the history of weapons creations and development in the 19th century to three major points in history, the American Civil War, the Napoleonic Wars, and the Industrial Revolution. The author suggests that these historical points effected the creation of different types of weapons and that the increased demand and increased technologies of this era pushed weapons inventors into the creative process, with a number of major results. Bibliography lists 8 sources.
Name of Research Paper File: D0_Weapons.doc
Unformatted Sample Text from the Research Paper:
utilization of new techniques and discoveries in terms of weapon development were significant to the Northern victory. At the same time, the Industrial Revolution that impacted the US, but
also spread throughout Europe, created new technologies for weapons improvements. Up until this time, flintlock firearms had been the primary weapons utilized for almost a hundred years. But
the needs of the military as well as significant increases in the civil uses of weapons lead to the development of the percussion cap around 1830, and this transformed the
focus of firearm developers (Ashdown 370). This change led to other major improvements within weaponry development, including the creation of breech-loaders, the invention of repeating guns, and the development
of revolving loading systems. II. FLINTLOCK In any study of the development of weaponry in the 19th century, it is important to look at the flintlock
musket as a starting point for the development of other weapons. Invented in France in during the 17th century, it utilized a hammer that struck flint to ignite gunpowder
in and create the explosion. Reverend Alexander John Forsyth, who was a Scottish clergy as well as a chemist, recognized the weakness of the flintlock system, especially the lag
in time between release of the hammer and the subsequent explosion, which resulted in inaccuracy (Reid 167). After a number of experiments, he succeeded in creating a fulminate mechanism that
instantaneously ignited the gunpowder, greatly reducing the time delay and increasing accuracy (Reid 167). This system was easy to install on most flintlock weapons with only minor costs.
He presented his discovery in London in April of 1807, and formed the Forsyth and Company to begin production (Reid 167). Developments in French gun making led many