Amusette

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ericb

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Been some time since I contributed anything to the Forum; life has been Hectic. But I have kept a voyeuristic Eye on the Forum all along - checking in several times a week and seeing what's going on. Hope to contribute a bit more here and there in the Future - more later.

Anyway, have always been intrigued by the Amusette since reading Johann Ewald's "Diary of the American War" many Moons ago. Anybody have any comments/references on this? I can see how it could be used to quite good Effect in many instances.

Eric

ps - Wasn't sure whether to put this under Rifles or Artillery, since some were simply large Rifles, and some were actually made & mounted as long thin "Cannons"....it's the the large Rifle version that particularly interests me.

pps - Anybody know where I can get a Copy Ewald's Book auf Deutsch?
 

Spence10

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General Charles Lee wrote from Williamsburg in 1776: "I am likewise furnishing myself with four-ounced rifle-amusettes, which will carry an infernal distance; the two-ounced hit a half sheet of paper 500 yards distance."

Check out this link, if you don't already have it.

http://www.history.army.mil/news/2013/130325a_amusettes.html

Spence
 

ericb

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Wow - Didn't know Rap Forge made them! Speaks volumes about how highly regarded they were at the time.

I can see how a Continental or Militiaman might feel somewhat smug taking Pot-Shots from behind a pile of Split Rails, or from the Window of a Brick Farmhouse, as Musket Balls splattered ineffectually about him, but...a 1" Rifle Ball carrying a Full Head of Steam would be a different matter altogether....and I would seriously consider, as we used to say back in the Day..."un-assing the A.O."

Would really like to see some specifics as to Bore Sizes, Rates of Twist, Service Charges etc. This bears further research....Thanks, Guys.

Anybody else?

E
 

Spence10

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I don't remember is this bit is from the link I posted, but it's something I collected.

Amusettes also were called boat, rampart, or wall guns. Used for protection on boats or in fortifications, these large, semi-portable but usually stationary muskets bridged the gap between shoulder-fire muskets and artillery. They weighed about 50 pounds, were mounted on a steel swivel, and could fire a four-ounce or 1.2 inch shot.
****

There are no known surviving amusettes from the Fredericksburg Manufactory. However, four examples from the Rappahannock Forge survived the war and are in the U.S. Army historical collection. The massive rifles are brass mounted, roughly five feet long, full-stocked, with a sliding wooden patch box and wooden ramrod.

Spence
 

coloradoclyde

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Check this one out Spence....

https://youtu.be/qb3M1Af0FR4

Or this one

https://youtu.be/UEyHZUW9LFE
 

SgtErv

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That second video you posted

"You'd need a second soldier, preferably one bulky enough to handle the weight and dim enough to not recognize the danger he's truly in"

:rotf:
 

coloradoclyde

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I laughed when I heard that too...... :haha:

He's also a human shield from enemy fire....
 

Many Klatch

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I had some friends that got the bug to build 4 bore "Wall Guns". They made two, one was rifled and one was smoothbored. The smoothbore weighed about 26 pounds. We shot it with a light load of 250 grains of powder pushing a 1/4 pound ball of soft lead. It would definitely push you back.

Another friend built one that was rifled. With a full charge of 500 grains of powder at 500 yards the ball penetrated the dirt backstop about 18 inches.

Tactics for the time seemed to use the Amusette in a similar way as the 50Cal Machine gun today. It helped set up strong points, anchor the end of a line and reduce enemy strong points.

I understand that as a Wall Gun they were used to keep artillery off at a respectful distance. The 1/4# ball could damage a cannon's carriage and eliminate the crew.
 

Loyalist Dave

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Several reasons...,

I checked and I think I can get the 8-bore cheaper..., maybe not..., trying to see if I can get it 36"-42" with a 1:108 twist, or a 1:120

It's cheaper to shoot ..., I am Scottish after all....


AND I don't think I'd like to wear a truss after moving the 4-bore about....

LD
 

Loyalist Dave

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Hey I found the following concerning "rampart" guns..., for Maryland...letters to and from Annapolis...

10 April 1781
There are in this city [Philadelphia] about 4000 Rampart pieces belonging to the public ”” they weigh from 16 to 20lbs each it is thought the lightest might be useful in the hands of the Militia, and the others on board of Vessels. If you think it proper we shou'd apply for any of them, on account of the state, it is probable a thousand or 1500 might be obtained, with some old cartouch boxes, belonging to them. There are likewise some Brass Field pieces mounted, three or four of which might possible be obtained on yr request

1500? :shocked2:

How the heck do the citizens of Philly have that many, especially in private hands? That's a lot of privately owned, crew-served artillery!!

I wonder if these were actually some sort of punt-gun for water fowl hunting, that were unshipped from their boats and employed by folks in the city???


31 May 1781:
Under these distressing Circumstances, we request you to make known our wants to Congress in the most earnest Manner and endeavour to obtain a Proportion of all Cloathing Arms & etc that Congress now or may hereafter have for this state. We do not think that the rampart Pieces will be of great use to us however we will take five hundred of them for our Gallies, and with Pleasure receive the two field Pieces and as many more as can be spared to us In great
Necessity for them.


SO..., I wonder if they were ever delivered, and if they were, what happened to them after the AWI.
A search from 1800-1849 has zero results.

LD
 

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