1861 Springfield Rifle

An HMS American Cultures collaborative production


The Springfield Model 1861 rifle musket was the most common musket used during the American Civil War. It was 56 inches long. It Weighs 9 pound, shoots a single shot, its muzzle loaded, percussion lock fired the weapon. The choice of bullet for this weapon was a .58 caliber bullet, in other words a minie ball. Due to these factors the range was 100 yards; 400 yards for effectiveness. The original armory to make this was Springfield Armory, which in located in Springfield, Massachusetts. However the government needed more rifles for the war so they hired 20 other contractors to make similar rifles. An estimated 1 million rifles were manufactured to arm the infantry during the war. These were common among the Southern infantry because some were stolen from Harper's Ferry before the war. Also they were scavenged from Northern infantry and given to the South because of the short amount of supplies. The Northern infantry received the rifles from the armories. This gave them an advantage because the rifles could keep getting manufactured, so the North didn't have to worry about running out of supplies. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Springfield_Model_1861

Image Sources:

Online Sources:
  • Downey, Brian. "Model 1861 Percussion Rifle- Musket." Antietam: On the Web. 20 March 2009