Turner Rifle Update

by Fred Ray on June 2, 2018 · 0 comments

My previous post on the Turner rifle has been updated to reflect the fact that it will in fact take a standard P53 Enfield bayonet, which would make it a fully functional military rifle.

It has turned out to be a fine shooter.

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Short Takes

by Fred Ray on May 20, 2018 · 1 comment

Rethinking U. S. Grant seems to be the in thing right now. History has no judgment, but historians do, and these tend to run in cycles (witness views of the Confederacy). So it is with Grant, who seems to be on the upswing. Claremont Review of Books reviews some of the latest scholarship, including books by Ronald White and Ron Chernow.

Chernow’s conclusion that Grant “got the big issues right during his presidency, even if he bungled many of the small ones” is perhaps too generous; dividing the Republican Party over side issues like Santo Domingo, retaliating against honorable critics, overlooking corruption among his friends and appointees, and waffling on civil rights were not “small things.” And yet Chernow is no apologist. He acknowledges Grant’s flaws and makes them understandable by examining not only his subject’s psyche but his times, placing Grant in proper historical perspective.

In keeping with the times, director Steven Spielberg and and actor Leonardo DiCaprio are in talks to produce a biopic of Grant. DiCaprio as Grant, I dunno…

Meanwhile, the historical cleansing of America continues. A statue of a settler standing over a defeated Native American has been deemed offensive and removed in Michigan.

“Silent Sam” — the statue of a Confederate soldier at the University of North Carolina—has been defaced and continues to be a magnet for vandalism. The name is derived from the statue’s suppose magical power. Sam’s gun is said to fire whenever a virgin walks by, and it hasn’t fired yet.

General Lee may be coming down, but don’t worry about Comrade Marx—he’s doing just fine. A massive statue of him went up in his home town of Trier, courtesy of the Chinese (who, ironically, didn’t get rich until they started practicing capitalism). Hard to think of anyone who caused more misery, poverty, and death in the 20th Century than Marx, yet he continues to be revered.

Perhaps Seattle will put one next to their Lenin statue.

 

 

 

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Check out the Siege of Petersburg Online for daily posts on battle accounts in newspaper articles, diary entries, letters and more!

What are your Top 10 Gettysburg Books? See what a panel of bloggers said recently.

Want to read some interesting Civil War content from amateurs and pros alike? Check out the Top 10 Civil War Blogs and Top 10 Civil War Blogs: 11-20.

The Guns of 1866—The P53 Enfield vs. the Snider-Enfield

by Fred Ray May 9, 2018

Rob at Britishmuzzloaders does a practical demonstration of the differences of the P53 Enfield and the Snider Enfield. The Snider was basically a P53 that had been converted into a cartridge firing breech loader by adding a “shoe” at the breech designed by American Jacob Snider. As such it was comparable to the American “trapdoor” […]

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Short Takes

by Fred Ray April 23, 2018

Apologies for the blogging hiatus but it’s been tax time and one has to give unto Caesar what is his or he’ll do bad things to you. Anyway, just a short update on the historical cleansing of, well, just about everywhere. Here in tolerant Asheville Robert E. Lee’s face was scratched off a memorial plaque, […]

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Free Access to Fold3’s Civil War Collection (limited time)

by Fred Ray April 9, 2018

Business pressures and tax time have not left much for blogging, for which I apologize. Have some posts in the works, but until then here’s something from Fold3 that might interest readers. For a very limited time (until April 15th) Fold3 has their entire Civil War collection available for free access (you do have to […]

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The Confederate Cook & Brother Rifle, and a Lorenz Reproduction

by Fred Ray March 22, 2018

Ian at Forgotten Weapons examines two products of the Confederate Cook & Brother manufactury. Cook and Brother was one of the largest and most successful of the private ordnance factories in the South during the Civil War. It was formed by two British brothers who had moved to New Orleans, Frederick and Francis Cook. They […]

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Then They Came for General Hooker…

by Fred Ray March 19, 2018

Being in New England Massachusetts suffers from an acute shortage of Confederate monuments, giving activists little to do. However, creative ones will find a way, and you can always go after Union heroes. One Massachusetts lawmaker has a problem with General Joseph Hooker (a native son) because an entrance named in his honor insults “women’s […]

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