Poison Round Balls

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blackhorse

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This may not be the place to post this inquiry but to me it was the most appropriate. I just read a passage about the Mountain Men and the Blackfoot Indians. It was said that The Blackfoot would take a small piece of buffalo meat and have a rattle snake strike it over and over again, they would dry the meat and pound it into powder and coat their roundballs with it. It was said that if you were hit with it, it would cause severe infection/reaction. This is the first time I have ever heard of this.
 

sawyer04

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Most infections I have heard were from the patch and not the ball. I wouldn't bet the powdered ball wasn't used as the native Americans were very knowledgeable in concoctions of sort.
 

mushka

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People have died from infection from the horse hair stuffing in cushions if they accidentally got some of it into them.
 

DaveC

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In the Texas Revolution and Mexican War there was a naive pseudo-scientific belief that copper was toxic or poisonous but lead was not. Mexican forces manufactured projectiles such as metralla or canister and grape shot and round shot for cannon made from the slag produced by her silver mines. That slag typically contained a great deal of copper, and so the resultant brass or bronze projectiles would oxidize and turn green. People at the time thought that this was a fiendish and nasty attempt to make the wounds more lethal than the typical sepsis or peritonitis. Of course, the copper was not toxic.

Copper vessels were often used to cook with, since the metal is rather maleable for smiths to work with and it retains heat very well. Nonetheless, copper will leach out the Vitamin C in fresh vegetables and fruits if used for cooking. This may well have been a factor that promoted the onset of scurvy aboard ships that used copper kettles and basins to cook the sailor's rations.
 

Dr5x

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This may not be the place to post this inquiry but to me it was the most appropriate. I just read a passage about the Mountain Men and the Blackfoot Indians. It was said that The Blackfoot would take a small piece of buffalo meat and have a rattle snake strike it over and over again, they would dry the meat and pound it into powder and coat their roundballs with it. It was said that if you were hit with it, it would cause severe infection/reaction. This is the first time I have ever heard of this.
THAT'S A NEW ONE FOR ME AS WELL.MY EARLIEST SIMILAR FOLKLORE INVOLVED SCORING ANY LEAD projectile to rough it up and then rub fresh garlic pm itwith the result that It cause an incurable infection.
This worried me as a kid and I know not why as I lived far from flying lead balls with or without the deadly garlic.
Dutch Schoultz
 

Dr5x

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Yep. Mafia folklore.
Speaking of folklore,
I read that including garlic in your diet causes your blood vessels to be more like rubber and that they will expand rather than shatter from excess pressure. Having lost a few friends to exploding aneurisms over the past several years I follow that folklore closely.
Besides I like the taste of garlic and other folklore tells me that bugs tend not to bite garlic eaters. That seems to be the case because mosquitos seem to avoid me s well as attractive women.

Dutch Schoultz
 

tenngun

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Cause and effect. Cast magic over a projectile shoot projectile, person dies of infection, must be the magic.
It was well ‘known’ square ball killed Muslims better then round ball.
A writer wrote about the history of guns talked about germs on ball, that half the germs in Europe were on the ball and the other half on a shot fellows clothing. So infection was a big risk with even a survivable shot. Any one who died of infection after catching one of these balls was then killed by the magic treatment.
 

Nyckname

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In the Texas Revolution and Mexican War there was a naive pseudo-scientific belief that copper was toxic...
"Toxicology. Copper toxicity is a type of metal poisoning caused by an excess of copper in the body. Copperiedus can occur from eating acidic foods cooked in uncoated copper cookware, or from exposure to excess copper in drinking water or other environmental sources."
 

Allen L

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That slag typically contained a great deal of copper, and so the resultant brass or bronze projectiles would oxidize and turn green. People at the time thought that this was a fiendish and nasty attempt to make the wounds more lethal than the typical sepsis or peritonitis. Of course, the copper was not toxic.
This may actually have been based in some degree of truth. Copper metal itself is not toxic, but the green oxidation (called verdigris) is a result of a reaction with an acidic solution, most commonly rainwater, which is naturally slightly acidic. Verdigris is toxic if ingested or introduced into the bloodstream.
In the middle ages, English archers used artificially produced verdigris powder as an insecticide added to the glue on their arrows. This prevented insects from destroying expensive projectiles, but lead to accusations from the French that the English had poisoned their arrows.
Whether or not the verdigris would cause any more infection in a gunshot wound that normal is something I wouldn't know, but its interesting that an army would try it.
 

DaveC

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Very many tribal peoples have attempted to use magic and spells and incantations to avoid exposure to lethal missiles. Some of these are notorious, such as the case in the central African Maji-Maji rebellion, where magic and millennarian beliefs would somehow turn enemy bullets to water...

On the other hand, there are weird discoveries made in archaeological sites, such as musket balls completely transfixed by a square section nail and similar.
 

DaveC

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Ottoman Janissaries and other infantry would sometimes just hammer lead into a long rectangular, and then cut cubes of lead from the resultant bars and use them as bullets. It was done because it was quicker than melting the lead and making use of moulds. But it was not "poisonous" other than the usual lead poisoning.
 

tenngun

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I think it was in ‘pissing in the snow’ that the ozark legend was told that a coffin nail placed in a gun stock would keep it from getting hexed. But, if you didn’t put one in, your wife could hex your gun by tying a knot in her apron string just before her husband shot.
 

Erwan

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The most "poisonous" bullets are lead bullets, if nobody can extract the bullet and the time passing (relatively long time) the people gets lead poisoning that stay in the body and blood...
A lot of soldiers after the civil war for you or the Napoleone wars for us died of the lead very late after the battles and the end of the wars...
I don't think that the lead with some rattlesnake (or other) venom can be mortal...
 
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