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Hello,

I did a quick search on this forum in regards to a new purchase I have on the way but didn’t get too far before time cut me short.

I have an “Alexander Henry” Volunteer Rifle coming soon and after asking some generic questions over the phone I was a bit surprised to discover the only thing stamped on top of the barrel was “Parker Hale, Birmingham”. Knowing this I bought the thing!

Just as another member expressed desire to recreate a CSA sharpshooter’s rifle for theirs, I want to do the same for mine. I want to recreate the shots made from Lookout Mountain down into Chattanooga.

That said, my questions are:
- What is the TRUE range from one of these recreated 2 band beauties (if I do indeed have a bonafide Parker Hale barrel)? Anyone know the estimated distance?
- When I visited Lookout Mountain for a 150th CW event, I recall seeing (somewhere) a Kerr rifle that had a tang long range sight and no scope. Does anyone know that type of sight is affixed to the tang? I’d like to get one. And is the front sight an accurate copy?
- If a 2 band sharpshooter rifle such as this was imported and then given to a particular soldier, what accoutrements accompanied it - if any (cartridge box, powder flasks, cap box)?

I have more questions but would like to limit my first post to these. I look forward to this new arrival and any of your tips, help or wisdom. Target shooting is a new hobby of mine and I’m excited to get going.

Most humbly and sincerely,
James
 

zimmerstutzen

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Apparently during the civil war there was sniper fire from the mountain across the river into the town of Harper's Ferry. I don't think accuracy was all that great, because only a few deaths resulted. IIRC one was a guy carrying a lantern to find his way to the privvy. Also IIRC the distance was about 3/8 mile. There was also a documented case of a rebel sniper striking and killing a Union Soldier on the Maryland side.
 

TFoley

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Here in UK, and, of course, wherever long range muzzleloading rifles are shot in competition, we shoot this style of rifle in .451cal out to 1200 yards using Soule or similar vernier tang sights.
 

Rudyard

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Dear James Though I couldn't say what the Civil war soldiers /snipers had . Likely just what they got hold of or where used to , No such being issued in the normal sense, i e not a US arsenal product. Though either side might acquire such as your Parker Hale Volunteer . Well mostly their sighted to 1.000 yards at least and I have shot such at that distance. Ide say yours should hold up once you get used to it but hitting some individual is not so assured . Not remotely assured but your in with a chance and bound to upset a group of men or horses . Much beyound that your battleing to SEE an individual . Elaberate sights are found even optical ones at that date I'me sure they picked able shots. Rather a cold bloody assassin's outlook, but its war
.Nobody shot at me deliberatley but add campaine stress to the effort to shoot well even in ideal conditions . Be bound to affect most mortals .. .Figure 2 & 1/2 drams good course to medium grain powder a sweeper card & a lube felt wad followed by 500 grain or so conical be it channelured or paper patched . Might up a bit on both and your in the hunt shooting supine or prone ( The bruises will go away ) And lots of luck. The Alex Henry is a good rifle . I believe cartridges came with the rifles or that was normal The Volunteer's where trained as troops. But flasks or weighed out charges are normal on a range . You Must have a good spotting scope and good markers in the butts in contact by phones and the usual codes "Message number four on target three " Ect. and a big target . but maybe a dusty hill side and a good mate with a glass might be an option We have two members live on Bisley Ranges so they will know more on the fine points . Oh buy spare nipples with fine vents they get eaten out, The Berilium copper sort work fine & you can get then for the Number 11 cap will save you a few bob.
Regards Rudyard
 
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Apparently during the civil war there was sniper fire from the mountain across the river into the town of Harper's Ferry. I don't think accuracy was all that great, because only a few deaths resulted. IIRC one was a guy carrying a lantern to find his way to the privvy. Also IIRC the distance was about 3/8 mile. There was also a documented case of a rebel sniper striking and killing a Union Soldier on the Maryland side.
Well 3/8 of a mile or 660 yards is definitely doable with that gun. The top notch on the elevator sight on my 3 band is 900 yards.
For a hail Mary shot into a crowd - should be a very effective terror tactic.
 
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Thank you for the welcome aboard and replies. I appreciate not only your time but shared wisdom. This is a big help so far.

(I checked parcel tracking and I gotta wait until Monday before this beauty arrives. It’ll make the start of the week a bearable).

Regards,
James
 

TFoley

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Much of the work carried out by sharpshooters of both sides involved taking out crew-served artillery in the field at long [for a rifle] distances. Of course, with very few exceptions, all field guns and even mortars were muzzle-loaders, as we have all seen many times in both movies and re-enactments, and apart from the #1 with the lanyard, all of the others had to walk or run in front of the gun at some time.

The Crimean War, taking place just a few short years before the ACW, proved to be very hard on the Russian gunners who were slaughtered in front of their guns by long-range fire from British and French infantry shooting that new-fangled Minie bullet from a rifled barrel long arm.
 

zimmerstutzen

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Well 3/8 of a mile or 660 yards is definitely doable with that gun. The top notch on the elevator sight on my 3 band is 900 yards.
For a hail Mary shot into a crowd - should be a very effective terror tactic.
Big difference between volly fire and sniper fire. I had a rolling block made in Oviedo under license from Remington. to the left side of the adjustable ladder sight was a v notch that lined up with a little teat on the side of the front barrel band for volley fire to 1400 meters. At that point accuracy is not expected just hopefully a rain of death on a group that is stupid enough to stand together.
 
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