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Interesting Ordnance-Related Letter on eBay

Posted by K Hannon on Sunday, 7 January 2018, at 3:41 a.m.

Now that I have added "Springfield" related searches to my periodic eBay and Craigslist searches, I am finding some interesting things.

There is an 1866 letter on eBay right now from a "Samuel Powell" to a "Captain Howard Stockton" in Springfield. The letter seems to be discussing experiments/development of a rifle, and a "reduction in calibre" is mentioned.

The main substance, to the extent I can decipher the handwriting, states:

"I am much interested with the details and the [illegible] you report [illegible]. I think the steps are taken int he right direction. I wish almost that the calibre had been reduced to .45 as the [illegible] in the weight of projectile would have counterbalanced the greater weight of the new tube. I hope [?] with the reduction fo the calibre the twist has been increased, especially as the same weight of projectile remains.

I believe too that a [illegible] head for the projectile will be advantageous especially of the twist of the grooves be not increased.

I shall indeed be glad to see the new [new being underlined] gun, as it will in fact be, when altered."

Could this be referring to the development of the M1866 and its reduction from a .58 to a .50 projectile?


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