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 Posted: Wed Apr 15th, 2009 03:00 am
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Mark
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Over the last few years there has been a debate about the impact of rifle muskets on Civil War combat.  It seems to me that more and more historians are falling into the Paddy Griffith camp which argues rather convincingly that due to a varity of factors (minie ball trajectory, limited visibility due to terrain and black power, limited amounts of cartridges carried, the unlikeness of soldiers to utilize the backsights properly under battlefield conditions and the psychological value of a devestating first volley to name a few), there was a enormus difference between the theoretical range of a rifle musket (500-800 meters) and the actual battlefield range (100-200 meters).  Thoughts anyone?

Mark

P.S.  I heartily reccommend Earl J. Hess's recent book "The Rifle Musket in Civil War Combat" for anyone interested in this question

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