• This community needs YOUR help today. We rely 100% on Supporting Memberships to fund our efforts. With the ever increasing fees of everything, we need help. We need more Supporting Members, today. Please invest back into this community. I will ship a few decals too in addition to all the account perks you get.



    Sign up here: https://www.muzzleloadingforum.com/account/upgrades

Early 1700's French "Woods Runner's" Long Arms?

Muzzleloading Forum

Help Support Muzzleloading Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

yellowhammer

40 Cal
Joined
Oct 1, 2022
Messages
298
Reaction score
480
Location
AL
Question for muzzleloader history buffs: If one were to stop his time machine in 1702-1711 or so at Fort Louis de La Louisiane at La Mobile, and encountered the coureur des bois, or "woods runner" in the attached pic, what long arm would he be bearing?

coureur de bois.jpg


Ignore the above. Properly dressed French Coureur De Bois:

coureur de bois 2.jpg




This time period doesn't get a lot of discussion.
 
Last edited:
The fusil de chasse was designed for hunting. Generally the muskets made at Tull were defined by models, but some hunting fusils were made to order. Differences were based on their intended purpose and market.[6] In 1695 and 1696 contracts for muskets from the Tulle factory each called for "five hunting muskets for the Indian Chiefs".[6] These models would later be called a Fusil fin (chief's grade musket). These muskets were to be caliber 28 balls to the pound (approximately .56 caliber), 45 inches (1,100 mm) long, "well filed and well polished with fine mountings and a flat lock".[6] These gifts to Indian chiefs were elegant hunting muskets.
 
Agree. I can see the jaunty independent guy in the picture preferring a Fusil Fin or maybe a Fusil Marine Ordinaire finagled off of some French sailor somehow. I'm not having any luck finding info on the weapons that D'Iberville brought with him. Sort of a dark period before the Spanish occupation by Galvez.
 
Last edited:
Agree with you about time period appearance of the sketch. Maybe this pic is more representative.


chasseur.jpg


Yeah, I can see the Fusil Boucanier in common use in the woods and bayous around 1700's La Mobile.
 
Question for muzzleloader history buffs: If one were to stop his time machine in 1702-1711 or so at Fort Louis de La Louisiane at La Mobile, and encountered the coureur des bois, or "woods runner" in the attached pic, what long arm would he be bearing?

View attachment 262003

This time period doesn't get a lot of discussion.
Frederick Remington who drew this was not even born until 1861.

A Courier des Bois in the mid 1700's close to civilization would have been dressed in European clothes, French ships were constantly landing at New Orleans with clothing, shoes and other goods that were intended for Mobile, Kaskaskia etc. Breeches, shirts, weskits, shoes, socks, hats etc. were all imported.

The same person would have adopted some native American clothing after wintering among them but in general it would have been a mixture of what they found not only comfortable but fashionable amongst their peers. The drawing by Remington would have been a much later time period.

Edit, also remember that the French were USUALLY not staying in the wilderness but returning to civilization to trade the furs they had acquired for more trade goods and resupplying.
 
Last edited:
I agree with you 100% that the Remington Courier de Bois sketch is not apropos 1700's Fort Louis de La Louisiane; pardon the faux pas. That brings back up my original quest; so little is shown or known about the D'Iberville efforts in La Mobile. One could deduce that heavy Nouvelle France clothing would be shed very quickly in the hot deep South climate in favor of more "sauvage" attire. But, their long arms would almost certainly have been similar - Tulle Fusil variants?
 
I agree ... that is certainly not a Frenchman!

I totally agree the guy in the original pic is dressed wrong for what we think of as French, y'all; LOL! I'm sorry I posted it - I'll fix the post. (Whew, tough crowd)

Now, back to the original question, which is what weapon would have been carried by one of D'Iberville's guys at Ft Louis de La Louisiane?
 
Last edited:
In the late 1600's the Tulle factory was turning out different guns

Fusil de Traite (trade gun)
Fusil de Chasse (for the chase, hunting gun)
Fusil Fin (Chiefs grade)

Depending on what he could come up with, he would not have been carrying a military arm as those belonged to the king.
 
If 17th century, I'd go with a Fusil de Boucanier. Otherwise if Milicien, from the 1690s to the 1740s the French musket carried was predominantly the Marine model made in Tulle. During the later 1740s, the Ministry of Marine then bought the 1728 style muskets from St. Etienne.
 
 1702: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from renewed 1696 contract for additional 5-years with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1702: Things needed for establishment of Mobile River.
2 fusils with their sheaths at 30L [each] (Brain).
 1702: Included in a shipment from France to merchant Martel in Quebec:
2 - very fine guns, brass furniture, 4-1/2 foot barrel, in fashion at 26L4s
3 - very fine guns, 3 foot 8 inch barrel at 16L2d
6 - very fine guns, flat lock at 14L4d
6 - very fine guns, at 13L8d
18 fine guns, brass furniture at 12L6d
5 - fine carbines, brass furniture at 10L8d
10 carbines, brass furniture at 10L8d
1 - pair of fine pistols, brass furniture at 30L
(Kent)
 1703: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1703: 500 muskets sent by Navy [Canada] (Cassel).
 1703: Expenses for Mississippi included:
500 trade guns at 14L apiece (Brain).
 1704: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1705: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1705: 500 promised but only 139 muskets arrived [Canada] (Cassel).
 1705: Saint- Etienne succeeded in selling hunting guns for Canada, but the quality was so poor that Vaudreuil and Beauharnois asked the King that future shipments come from Tulle (Bouchard, Museum, p 12).
 1705-16: Correspondence with Tulle shows that production was concentrated on hunting muskets for Canada and later on Grenadier muskets (Bouchard, Museum, p 11).
 1706: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1706: 361 muskets, rest of 1705 order [Canada] (Cassel).
 1707: 475 muskets [Canada] (Cassel).
 1708: First socket bayonets sent to New France was an order of 200 shipped aboard the Charente bound for Plaisance (Placentia, Newfoundland). (Goldstein).
 1708-45: For the years between. New muskets for recruits & small amounts for rest – no larger than 200 [Canada] (Cassel).
 1709: from the inventory of Marillac, a married soldier at Fort Pontchartrain, Detroit after his death, one carbine. (Kent).
 1711: Cadillac’s inventory at Detroit (Michigan Pioneer…)
3 large muskets, English make. 4 large muskets, French. 1 ditto, newly put together, without a trigger-guard. 2 ditto, spoilt. (Kent)
 
If 17th century, I'd go with a Fusil de Boucanier. Otherwise if Milicien, from the 1690s to the 1740s the French musket carried was predominantly the Marine model made in Tulle. During the later 1740s, the Ministry of Marine then bought the 1728 style muskets from St. Etienne.
1683: Regulations required each French merchant ship to carry 12
buccaneer guns to be sold at 15L each to the inhabitants of the various French colonies upon whom they called. (Moller).
 
Wou
 1702: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from renewed 1696 contract for additional 5-years with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1702: Things needed for establishment of Mobile River.
2 fusils with their sheaths at 30L [each] (Brain).
 1702: Included in a shipment from France to merchant Martel in Quebec:
2 - very fine guns, brass furniture, 4-1/2 foot barrel, in fashion at 26L4s
3 - very fine guns, 3 foot 8 inch barrel at 16L2d
6 - very fine guns, flat lock at 14L4d
6 - very fine guns, at 13L8d
18 fine guns, brass furniture at 12L6d
5 - fine carbines, brass furniture at 10L8d
10 carbines, brass furniture at 10L8d
1 - pair of fine pistols, brass furniture at 30L
(Kent)
 1703: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1703: 500 muskets sent by Navy [Canada] (Cassel).
 1703: Expenses for Mississippi included:
500 trade guns at 14L apiece (Brain).
 1704: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1705: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1705: 500 promised but only 139 muskets arrived [Canada] (Cassel).
 1705: Saint- Etienne succeeded in selling hunting guns for Canada, but the quality was so poor that Vaudreuil and Beauharnois asked the King that future shipments come from Tulle (Bouchard, Museum, p 12).
 1705-16: Correspondence with Tulle shows that production was concentrated on hunting muskets for Canada and later on Grenadier muskets (Bouchard, Museum, p 11).
 1706: 600 hunting muskets with barrels 3’-9” for Canada and Acadia and 5 fine hunting guns for Indian Chiefs, to be provided from contract with Tulle. (Bouchard, Museum, p 9, 24)
 1706: 361 muskets, rest of 1705 order [Canada] (Cassel).
 1707: 475 muskets [Canada] (Cassel).
 1708: First socket bayonets sent to New France was an order of 200 shipped aboard the Charente bound for Plaisance (Placentia, Newfoundland). (Goldstein).
 1708-45: For the years between. New muskets for recruits & small amounts for rest – no larger than 200 [Canada] (Cassel).
 1709: from the inventory of Marillac, a married soldier at Fort Pontchartrain, Detroit after his death, one carbine. (Kent).
 1711: Cadillac’s inventory at Detroit (Michigan Pioneer…)
3 large muskets, English make. 4 large muskets, French. 1 ditto, newly put together, without a trigger-guard. 2 ditto, spoilt. (Kent)
Are these be replacements or were they still arming the citizens? Sounds like a lot of guns each year. Would soldiers be issued from these stores or where they issued guns while still in France?
 
Back
Top