Weaponry of the Civil War
SSM Civil War
December 18, 2010
During the Civil War, like all wars produced a variable amount of weapons that were manufactured to help war efforts. Basic categories of these weapons include rifles, pistols, canons, bladed weapons, and advances in rapid-firing arms such as the newly developed Gatling Gun. Of course there are several weapons in each of these categories and they will be brought up as well.
The first weapons to be brought to light are rifles. Rifles were the main arms of both sides’ soldiers during the war. Rifles provided accuracy over a distance and in large number could create a wall in which as long as ammunition held up, the opposing side would not be able to breach without heavy losses. Rifles can be classified in two categories know as bored and smooth-bores. Smooth bore rifles had smooth bores as the name implies and would fire ammunitions over distances. Rifled bores are a technological advancement in which a rifle’s barrel had grooves cut on the inside it in a spiral that would spin the round as it traveled through and out of the barrel. This made the rifle more accurate and more powerful over all. This advancement was seen for the first time around the fifteenth century, but it wasn’t seeing much action until the time of the Civil War. Rifles of the time however, took a while to load and those lingering seconds of loading cost many men their lives. This chronological issue was fought by commanders aligning troops in volleys which would fire a round while the previous volley reloaded. This tactic somewhat made up for the time spent loading and unloading, but didn’t fully make up for the delay within the volleys which left the company open for return firing or a charge which would leave them without their rifles.
Another weapon that played a major portion in the Civil War was the handgun. From Colt’s Army Model 1860 to the French-made Lefaucheux to the combination of blade and gun know...