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Encyclopedia > LeMat revolver
LeMat Revolver

Type Grapeshot Revolver/Service pistol
Place of origin Confederate States of America
Service history
In service 1861–1865
Used by Confederate States of America
Wars American Civil War
Production history
Designer Jean Alexandre LeMat
Designed 1855
Produced 1856–1865
Number built approx 5,000
Specifications
Weight 3.1 lb (1.41 kg), unloaded
Length 13.25in. (356 mm)

Caliber .44 Ball, 16ga Grapeshot
Action Single Action revolver
Rate of fire 9 rounds/minute
Muzzle velocity 620 ft/s (190 m/s)
Effective range 40 yd
Maximum range 100 yd
Feed system 9-round cylinder, single-shot smoothbore secondary barrel
Sights fixed front post and rear notch

The LeMat revolver was a .42 caliber cap & ball black powder revolver invented by Dr. Jean Alexandre LeMat of New Orleans, which featured a rather unusual secondary 16 gauge smoothbore barrel capable of firing buckshot, and saw service with the armed forces of the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War of 1861–1865. Image File history File links Le_Mat_Revolver. ... Grapeshot was a kind of anti-personnel ammunition used in cannons. ... rEVOLVEr (2004) is the fourth studio album release by Swedish thrash metal band The Haunted. ... A service pistol is any handgun (revolver, or semi-automatic) issued to military personnel, or in some contexts, law enforcement officers. ... Motto Deo Vindice (Latin: Under God, Our Vindicator) Anthem (none official) God Save the South (unofficial) The Bonnie Blue Flag (unofficial) Dixie (unofficial) Capital Montgomery, Alabama (until May 29, 1861) Richmond, Virginia (May 29, 1861–April 2, 1865) Danville, Virginia (from April 3, 1865) Language(s) English (de facto) Religion... Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... LeMat revolver Dr. Jean Alexandre Francois LeMat (1824 - 1883) designed the percussion cap revolver that bears his name. ... The word calibre (British English) or caliber (American English) designates the interior diameter of a tube or the exterior diameter of a wire or rod. ... In firearms terminology, an action is the system of operation that the firearm employs to seal the breech (in a breech-loading firearm), and to load consecutive rounds. ... Rate of fire is the speed at which a specific firearm or artillery piece can ]] per minute (RPM or round/min), or rounds per second Note that heat and ammunition concerns mean that most automatic weapons are unlikely ever to sustain their cyclic rate of fire for a full minute... A guns muzzle velocity is the speed at which the projectile leaves the muzzle of the gun. ... rEVOLVEr (2004) is the fourth studio album release by Swedish thrash metal band The Haunted. ... The word calibre (British English) or caliber (American English) designates the interior diameter of a tube or the exterior diameter of a wire or rod. ... The percussion cap or primer was the crucial invention that enabled firearms to fire in any weather. ... Black powder was the original gunpowder and practically the only known propellant and explosive until the middle of the 19th century. ... LeMat revolver Dr. Jean Alexandre Francois LeMat (1824–1883), is best known for the percussion cap revolver that bears his name (see LeMat revolver). ... New Orleans is the largest city in the state of Louisiana, United States of America. ... The Gauge or bore (especially in British English) of a shotgun is the diameter (caliber) of the barrel. ... A shotgun shell is a self-contained cartridge loaded with shot or a slug designed to be fired from a shotgun. ... Motto Deo Vindice (Latin: Under God, Our Vindicator) Anthem (none official) God Save the South (unofficial) The Bonnie Blue Flag (unofficial) Dixie (unofficial) Capital Montgomery, Alabama (until May 29, 1861) Richmond, Virginia (May 29, 1861–April 2, 1865) Danville, Virginia (from April 3, 1865) Language(s) English (de facto) Religion... Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total...

Contents

History & design

The distinguishing characteristic of LeMat's revolver is that its 9-shot cylinder revolves around a separate central barrel of larger caliber than the chambers in the cylinder proper. The central barrel is smoothbore and can function as a short-barrelled shotgun, with the firing selecting whether to fire from the cylinder or the smoothbore barrel by flipping a lever on the end of the hammer. Flipping the lever down caused the moveable striker to fall upon the primer set directly under the hammer, discharging the lower barrel, whilst leaving it in the standard position would fire the chambers in the cylinder, much like any other revolver. The LeMat is sometimes referred to as a "Grapeshot Revolver". The word calibre (British English) or caliber (American English) designates the interior diameter of a tube or the exterior diameter of a wire or rod. ... A pump-action, a Remington 870, two semi-automatic action Remington 1100 shotguns, 20 boxes of shotgun shells, a clay trap, and three boxes of clay pigeons. ...


LeMat originally chambered his pistol for .40 (or .42) caliber revolver bullets, with a .60 (16 gauge) smoothbore barrel, and had a jointed ramrod (mounted on the right-hand side of the frame), which was used to load both barrels. Later, during the American Civil War, a lighter .35-caliber pistol with a .50 caliber (28-gauge) smoothbore barrel was produced, but as these were non-standard ammunition sizes (.36 or .44 caliber were most common for contemporary revolvers), LeMat owners had to cast their own bullets (as opposed to being issued them from general military stores). The final models of the LeMat were produced in .36 or .44 caliber in response to these criticisms, but too few of them managed to get past the Union blockade of the South during the Civil War to be of any real use. Look up ramrod in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... 1861 Cartoon map of the blockade // The Union Blockade refers to the naval actions between 1861 and 1865, during the American Civil War, in which the Union Navy maintained a massive effort on the Atlantic and Gulf Coast of the Confederate States of America designed to prevent the passage of...


Civil War use

LeMat hoped to market his adaptable revolver as a primary sidearm for dragoons and other mounted troops. He entered into a partnership with then-Major P.G.T. Beauregard in the April of 1859 to market his handgun to the U.S. Army. Beauregard—besides being LeMat's father-in law—was one of the first U.S. officers to join the Confederacy. French dragoon, 1745. ... Major is a military rank the use of which varies according to country. ... Pierre Gustave Toutant de Beauregard Pierre Gustave Toutant de Beauregard (BO-rih-gahrd) (May 28, 1818 – February 20, 1893), best known as a general for the Confederate Army during the American Civil War, was also a writer, civil servant, and inventor. ... The United States Army is the largest branch of the armed forces of the United States. ...


When war broke out LeMat received Confederate contracts for the production of five thousand revolvers, and plans were laid to manufacture the gun abroad and then import them into the Confederacy, which lacked the necessary facilities to produce the weapon locally. Confederate gun runners were able to slip shipments of the gun through the Union naval blockade and it is estimated that about 2,500 made it into Confederate service.


In addition to General Beauregard and Colonel LeMat, LeMat’s revolver was used by such famous Confederate officers as Major Generals Braxton Bragg, J.E.B. Stuart and Richard H. Anderson, and Major Henry Wirz. Braxton Bragg Braxton Bragg (March 22, 1817 – September 27, 1876) was a career U.S. Army officer and a general in the Confederate States Army, a principal commander in the Western Theater of the American Civil War. ... James Ewell Brown Stuart (February 6, 1833 – May 12, 1864) was an American soldier from Virginia and a Confederate Army general during the American Civil War. ... Richard H. Anderson Richard Heron Anderson ( October 7, 1821 – June 26, 1879) was a career U.S. Army officer and a Confederate general in the American Civil War. ... The execution of Henry Wirz before the US Capitol as the trap door is sprung Captain Henry Wirz (November 1822 – November 10, 1865) was the only Confederate soldier executed in the aftermath of the American Civil War for war crimes. ...

A close-up of the hammer on a LeMat Revolver, showing the pivoting striker that could be used to fire either the revolving chambers on the cylinder or the secondary smoothbore barrel.
A close-up of the hammer on a LeMat Revolver, showing the pivoting striker that could be used to fire either the revolving chambers on the cylinder or the secondary smoothbore barrel.

The LeMat revolver was manufactured from 1856 to 1865, with approximately 5,000–10,000 being produced. The first models were manufactured by John Krider of Philadelphia, with the second model (the first overseas model), being produced by Charles Frederic Girard and Son of Paris. Quality concerns prompted LeMat to investigate production at the Birmingham Small Arms Company in Birmingham, England, but this was not proceeded with. However, LeMat revolvers from France were shipped to the Confederate forces via the United Kingdom, and all firearms landed in the UK were (and still are) required to be proofed, the LeMats which found their way through the Union blockade were stamped with British proof marks from the Birmingham Proof House, leading to the misapprehension that the pistols were actually manufactured in the UK. Having said that, a handful are known to have been made in the UK by an unknown manufacturer, believed to be the London Armoury Company, but only two examples survive to the present day and it is doubtful any of the English-made LeMats ever saw service during the U.S. Civil War.[1] Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... 1865 (MDCCCLXV) is a common year starting on Sunday. ... Nickname: City of Brotherly Love, Philly, the Quaker City Motto: Philadelphia maneto (Let brotherly love continue) Location in Pennsylvania Coordinates: Country United States State Pennsylvania County Philadelphia Founded October 27, 1682 Incorporated October 25, 1701 Mayor John F. Street (D) Area    - City 369. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) Paris Eiffel tower as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... The Birmingham Small Arms Company (BSA) was a British manufacturer of vehicles, firearms, and military equipment, and still exists as an airgun sport manufacturer and distributor. ... Birmingham (pron. ... Motto (French) God and my right Anthem God Save the Queen England() – on the European continent() – in the United Kingdom() Capital (and largest city) London (de facto) Official languages English (de facto) Unified  -  by Athelstan 967 AD  Area  -  Total 130,395 km²  50,346 sq mi  Population  -  2007 estimate 50... A proof test is a test wherein a deliberately overpressure round is fired from a firearm in order to verify that the firearm is not defective and will not explode on firing. ... Birmingham Gun Barrel Proof House The Birmingham Gun Barrel Proof House was established in 1813 by an act of Parliament at the request - and expense - of the then prosperous Birmingham Gun Trade. ... The London Armoury Company was a London arms manufactory that existed from 1856 until 1866. ...


The original revolver, constructed of blued steel with grips of polished walnut, was not considered to be a very accurate weapon although it was deadly at close range; Civil War cavalrymen, particularly in the South, preferred to carry several pistols anyway as it was faster to draw another loaded weapon than it was to try and reload a cap and ball revolver in combat. Bluing is a passivation process in which steel is partially protected against rust, and is named after the blue-black appearance of the resulting protective finish. ... “Walnut Tree” redirects here. ...


After the introduction of cartridge-firing firearms, the LeMat system appeared in pinfire, but this version is exceedingly rare. This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... An assortment of modern hand-held firearms using fixed ammunition, including military assault rifles, a sporting shotgun (fourth from bottom), a tactical shotgun (third from bottom), and a sporting rifle (top). ... A pinfire firearm cartridge is an obsolete type of brass cartridge in which the priming compound is ignited by striking a small pin which protrudes radially from just above the base of the cartridge. ...




Modern reproductions

The firms of Armi San Marco, Pietta, and Navy Arms manufacture modern reproductions of the LeMat revolver, chambered for a .44 caliber ball and with a 16 gauge smoothbore barrel.


References

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/b/b0/Lemat.jpg

External links

  • Article from American Handgunner, July 2002, on the Navy Arms reproduction LeMat Revolver

  Results from FactBites:
 
LeMat Revolver - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (245 words)
The LeMat, a 9-shot revolver from the Civil War era with 8 revolving chambers firing bullets and a center barrel firing shot.
The LeMat revolver was a.42 pistol invented by Dr. Jean Alexandre of New Orleans.
LeMat revolvers were set apart from the common Colt and Starr revolvers of the day (1860s) by a single smoothbore barrel affixed to the bottom of the main barrel that fired a.63 buckshot round that could blow a man's head off.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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