Dec 4, 2011


CLICK HERE FOR LINK to an interesting article about THE LOST TREASURE of ST. FRANCIS.

Nov 6, 2011

Britain’s Brown Bess

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to an interesting article about Britain's Brown Bess.

Oct 6, 2011

Flintlock Frizzen Bounce

In the Sept/Oct 2011 issue of Muzzleloader magazine, there's an interesting article about frizzen bounce. When a frizzen bounces (the author claims most do) the heel of the frizzen can hit the top of the flint and cause flints to go bad sooner than they should in some cases. You can test for this by putting masking tape over the top of the flint, from the top flint jaw to the sharp edge of the flint. They dry fire and look for a line that indents the masking tape. If you see a line in the tape, your frizzen is bouncing back and the heel of the frizzen is striking on top of the flint. The author of the article says to prevent flint damage, extend the leather that holds the flint in the jaws, so the leather goes a little past the line in the making tape, or in some cases clear down to the sharp edge of the flint. This cushions the blow of the frizzen heel when it hits on top of the flint.

I tested this on my Brown Bess, and sure enough my frizzen is bouncing too, I saw a line in the tape where the heel of the frizzen hit the flint about 1/8 of an inch back from the sharp edge. I haven't tried yet to extend the leather holding the flint so the leather goes down nearly to the sharp edge - but I'm going to do that soon and see what happens. In my case it may not be affecting my flints much, because Brown Bess flints are so thick and strong. Plus the frizzen is hitting my flint about 1/8" back from the edge where it's still fairly thick, and it may not be hitting very hard.

Anyhow, you might want to test your gun too. I guess nobody really knew much about it happening until some slow motion pictures showed it happening a few years ago - at least that's what the author said. And now we can prove it by looking for that line in the tape on top of the flint. If there's a line, the frizzen is bouncing and in worse case (for some guns) it's whacking and chipping the flint every shot - which can lead to short flint life - at least that's the theory.

Here's some more info about frizzen bounce and some interesting links to slow motion videos of flintlocks being fired at this link: http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?action=printpage;topic=14676.0

Sep 27, 2011

The Movie Crimson Bond

Crimson Bond is a 70-minute motion picture produced by Jas Townsend & Son. Crimson Bond is a fictional tale, not a documentary. Its theme of friendship, loyalty, and redemption, combined with a bit of lighthearted humor in the midst of darker circumstances, is intended to entertain the entire family. There are 14 episodes so far posted on YouTube. Three more episodes remain. You can also watch the entire production without interruption on DVD, available at Jas Townsend & Son web site. And if you search for Jas Townsend on YouTube, you'll find quite a few instructional videos they have created.

Jul 18, 2011

18th Centrury Healing

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to some great reading about both the history of 18th Century medicine & a number of misconceptions about it.

Jun 20, 2011

Tobacco use by Native North Americans

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to Google Books preview of "Tobacco use by Native North Americans: sacred smoke and silent killer" by Joseph C. Winter.

Apr 18, 2011

Apr 14, 2011

Flintlocks: How to Shoot Them

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to an informative article "Flintlocks: How to Shoot Them" by Paul Vallandigham.

 *** WARNING ***  Please note that one of our most knowledgeable readers says "This article has information that can be interpreted in the wrong way & thus be the cause of an accident.  Leaving a gap between ball & charge for the purpose of supplying more oxygen is not common sense, and it can result in the barrel bulging or exploding.  One is better off ramming too hard than too little.  Modern black powder does not crush easily outside of a mortar & pestle.  Experienced shooters may understand those instructions, but a novice is more likely to err on the light side after reading that info rather than the firm side."

We agree, unfortunately there are a few words in this article like "Leave extra air" & "extra oxygen" which could be interpreted wrong by an inexperienced shooter.  What the author really means in the article is to seat the ball on the top of the powder at a consistent depth with a marked ramrod, but don't ram it down too hard and crush the powder.
However most muzzleloader shooters recommend seating the ball firmly against the powder, even if it does crush some of the powder.

Mar 17, 2011

The Buffalo Trace Website

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to The Buffalo Trace website for enjoyable reading about many things including "chewed bullets flying" and otter skin bags.

Mar 16, 2011

Gutenberg EBook of Ponteach, by Robert Rogers

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to Robert Roger's stage play, Ponteach [Pontiac]: or the Savages of America (1766), significant as an early American drama and for its sympathetic portrayal of Americans Indians.

Mar 10, 2011

Fascine Knife

Jas Townsend sells a great Fascine knife, also called a "Bill Hook" or a Brush knife. Used for making fascines and clearing brush. They are a common item that shows up in Rev War site digs. This knife is made of a very sturdy, heavy blade with a riveted wood handle. Approx 16 inches long. Made in USA. Please note we have no interest in Jas Townsend other than you let you know they make great, reasonably priced products. CLICK HERE FOR LINK to Fascine knife.

Ranging, Pathfinding, Bushcraft & Survival Notes

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to a great blog called Ranging, Pathfinding, Bushcraft & Survival Notes.

Feb 22, 2011

Mascouten Bay Longrifles Spring Rendezvous

Date: April 16-17, 2011  Early Setup Date: April 15, 2011
Location:  Mascouten Bay Longrifles grounds, Kettering Lane, Rushville, IL 62681  CLICK HERE FOR LINK to map.   
Camp fee: $20 per lodge, allows on entry fee. Wood, water, latrines. Trader no additional if they shoot, otherwise a $20 prize plus camp fee. Shoot only: Rifle $20, trade gun $20, pistol $5 50/50 shoot flint or percussion or cap and ball revolver. No Pets, no dinner.   
Contact: Harold Tyson, Beardstown, IL - day 217-323-2319 - evening 217-323-1745

The Settlement of the Appalachian Frontier

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to some enjoyable reading about the settlement of the Appalachian frontier.

Feb 9, 2011

The Romance and Tragedy of Pioneer Life

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to USGenNet's section titled: "THE ROMANCE AND TRAGEDY OF PIONEER LIFE".  Please see CHAPTER V for Rogers' Rangers information.  For lots of great reading, please don't miss the other chapters like CHAPTER VI "THE ADVENTURES OF THREE CAPTIVES".

Plus, please CLICK HERE FOR LINK to even more great reading at USGenNet's section titled: "COLONIAL AMERICA".

Jan 30, 2011

Reminiscences of the French War

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to the website OPEN LIBRARY where many great books can be found, including:   Reminiscences of the French War containing Roger's expeditions with the New-England rangers under his command, as published in London in 1765; with notes and illustrations. To which is added an account of the life and military services of Maj. Gen. John Stark; with notices and anecdotes of other officers distinguished in the French and revolutionary wars.

Jan 21, 2011

Women and Pipes

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to a great web page that discusses Women and Pipes by Beth Maxwell Boyle.  There's also lots of other great information at Beth's website, including 18th century cooking ware and early lighting.  I promise you'll find a treasure trove of information there for both men and women - and Rogers' Ranger reenactors too.

Jan 15, 2011

Roger's Ranger Joshua Goodenough's Old Letter

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to Harper's magazine, Volume 95.  On page 878 there's a wonderful article " Joshua Goodenough's Old Letter" by Frederic Remington.  Not only is it a great story, but there's also some great art by Remington contained within the article.

Jan 5, 2011

Fire from Flint & Steel

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to a good article on starting fires from flint and steel.  Please note that it is not the historically correct way, but it should work well as a starting point for the inexperienced.

Jan 1, 2011

18th-century Military Reenactors Facial Hair

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to an interesting article on 18th-century military reenactors facial hair.

More Reasons For Bayonets

CLICK HERE FOR LINK to an interesting conversation on the Mohican WWWboard between Sarah M. and George A. Bray III - where George Bray said: "One other comment, regarding the loss of the use of a bayonet if a bayonet lug was not replaced. On May 6, 1759, the light infantry were initially given carbines without bayonets. Later, on July 5, 1759, they were were issued bayonets for them "as the want of ammunition may sometimes be supplied by that weapon, and because no man should leave his post under the pretense that all his cartridges are fired. In most attacks of the night, it must be remembered that bayonets are preferable to fire." This reference is in the orderly book of Major John Hawks & General Orders of Wolfe's Army."