Dating powder horns tuc watkins dating
It has engravings of several ships, a flowering vine, a school of fish, and the Moore House and gardens, where General George Cornwallis negotiated the British surrender after the Battle of Yorktown.
This horn also has an inscription with the name of the owner: “James Downae his horn, made by E.
Crosby – 1781.” In the 19th century, powder horns were eventually rendered obsolete with the development of new gun technologies, though apparently not before this photograph was taken during the Civil War!
Beautiful as well as practical, the nine powder horns in the Division’s collection can give us a brief glimpse into the lives of the soldiers and frontiersmen of colonial America.
The finely engraved horn below depicts two of the most important transportation routes of colonial times: the Hudson-Champlain route, following the Hudson River and Lake Champlain from New York to Canada, and the Mohawk Valley route, following the Mohawk River from Albany to near Lake Ontario.
Dated between 17, this horn shows the names of many towns and forts along these routes, punctuated with images of houses, windmills, and boats as well as the British coat-of-arms.
Powder flasks were made in a great variety of materials and shapes, though ferrous metals that were prone to give off sparks when hit were usually avoided.
The powder flask was finally rendered obsolete by the spread of breech-loading guns and the innovations brought about by Hall, Sharps, Spencer, and the later development of self-contained cartridges that were developed and marketed successfully by Oliver Winchester, after which manufactured cartridges or bullets became standard.
Various devices were used to load a precise amount of powder to dispense, as it was important not to load too much or too little powder, or the powder was dispensed into a powder measure or "charger" (these survive much less often).
requiring a container for the gunpowder, which came loose.
Unlike modern cartridges, these were not inserted into the gun themselves, but were rather a pre-measured amount of powder stored in a paper wrapper, sometimes with the ball included as well.
Loading the gun involved tearing open the package, emptying the powder into the muzzle and pan, inserting the ball with the paper doubling as wadding, and then ramming home the charge.
The Geography and Map Division’s collection includes five horns of British origin dating from the French and Indian War era, three American-engraved horns from during the Revolutionary War, and one believed to have been made or carried by a Pennsylvania frontiersman sometime between 17.