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Chris Goerner




Location: Roanoke, Virginia
Joined: 19 Sep 2004
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PostPosted: Sat 13 Oct, 2007 4:23 am    Post subject: Question on use of Highland Firearm Accoutrements         Reply with quote

I recently purchased a reproduction Scottish powderhorn from Donnie Shearer. I have seen photos of several originals, and the maker did a nice job with the horn and the celtic scrimshaw work that adorns it.

I started wondering how a Highland noble would have carried the musketballs and tools needed to fire his musket. I am certain that some involved in the Jacobite uprisings actually carried cartridge boxes to service their muskets, but that would not have required the use of a powderhorn at all.

I have not been able to locate any 18th century artwork that depicts a Highlander wearing a powderhorn. Does anyone have any such artwork they can post for me? Short of that, any ideas on how/where the musketballs and tools were carried? The sporran comes to mind, but that solution just doesn't sit right with me for some reason.

Chris

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Alex McCracken




Location: Columbus, Ohio
Joined: 03 Sep 2003

Posts: 107

PostPosted: Sat 13 Oct, 2007 2:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chris,

There are numerous images of powderhorns in the book "Culloden,
The Swords and the Sorrows", but I'm not finding any artwork either.
Best I can find is a leather powder flask.

Check out this image of Lord Atholl, circa 1780, by David Allan. Looks
mostly like some type of rope to me.

http://hometown.aol.com/macdonaldimages/images/athollbonnet22.jpg

Also, note attached image of James Morray, from the 1740s. The powder
container has a similar treatment to Atholl's.

Alex



 Attachment: 25.2 KB
James Moray in Tartan 22.jpg


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annulled in behalf of a single petitioner
confessedly unworthy.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)
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Alex McCracken




Location: Columbus, Ohio
Joined: 03 Sep 2003

Posts: 107

PostPosted: Sat 13 Oct, 2007 2:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chris,

One more thing. Here's an image of a powder horn, circa 1780, used
by an officer of the 81st Aberdeenshire Highlanders, stationed in
Ireland. Almost certainly the owner was in the Light Infantry company
of this regiment. The powderhorn has rings, rather than buckles,
which indicates to me that some sort of rope, or braided cord,
was used to carry it. I think you'd be safe using a double-braided
linen, or silk cord to carry your new horn. Roy Najecki sells various
types of cords, as does Burnley and Trowbridge.

Alex

http://hometown.aol.com/macdonaldimages/images/81stpowderhorn.jpg

Pray, n:. To ask that the laws of the universe be
annulled in behalf of a single petitioner
confessedly unworthy.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)
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Konstantin Tsvetkov




PostPosted: Sun 14 Oct, 2007 12:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Alex,

Thank you for a very nice picture of the horn.

Do you have any idea of nozzle construction? To me it looks very much like a springed dispenser of Paterson type, but I was sure those came in use only in the second quarter of 19th century.

Konstantin.
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Sun 14 Oct, 2007 1:29 am    Post subject: Re: Question on use of Highland Firearm Accoutrements         Reply with quote

Chris Goerner wrote:
Short of that, any ideas on how/where the musketballs and tools were carried?


I wonder about that too. I wonder wether they díd. I mean carry tools. The ramrod was shoved neatly under the barrel and how much shooting did they do?
Also, on a hunt the gentry would probably have personel to hand them a fresh weapon and get on with the tools to clean the barrel.

Same thing on the battlefield. How many shots would a cavalryman fire, how many the infantry before they engaged? Did they have to carry cleaning tools? Would they have needed any more than a bandolier with paper cartridges, pan primer and the ramrod in the field?

Same thing the woodsman. Wouldn´t he better leave his gear on his mule or in base camp? After all half a dozen shots is not thát few for a guy who will have to carry his game back too.

What would yoú do?!
I guess Í would carry a cartridge pouch with a two half dozens of different ball&charge prepared, vent pick&brush, panprimer and nothing more.

peter
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 7:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Maybe they used cartridges for the musket (since it, as the primary arm, must be reloaded quickly) and the horn for a pistol (which, as a secondary or last-ditch weapon, need not be reloaded quickly). Maybe also used the horn for musket when speedy reloading was not called for. Or maybe one always carried cartridges but also a horn, balls and paper for making more as needed. Just speculating.
-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Mon 15 Oct, 2007 9:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Sean!

The use of pistols was rather varied anyway.
Militia riders could carry some five of them and so have 5 shots.
The gun had a far longer reach and I guess that is why this arm could and would be reloaded and the realy quite close quarter pistol better rapidly replaced by a loaded one.

A hunter on foot would likely carry only óne if at all.
A hunting rider would carry two and a rifle and even then the two pistols in their pommel holsters may have been an inheritance of cavalry withou much practical reason.
The pistol served a completely different role in hunting.
Aelbert Cuyp paints a lot of riding scenes of which quite a few are hunting scenes. It is an open question how acurate the scenes are. The depicted ´props´: saddles, arms, clothing are known to be véry accurate but shooting accessories are ... not prominent in their presence Laughing Out Loud and also known is that the landscapes are just as surely imaginative.
The same will apply to most other illustrations of the time. We know that most paintings were produced to please the customer and not neccessarily depict reality in the field.

peter
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