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Remington 1863 Contract Rifle

Remington 1863 Contract Rifle

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Description (Brief)
Also known as the "Zouave Rifle," the.58-caliber muzzle loading 1863 Remington was referred to as "Harpers Ferry Pattern" in official Army documents. Although over 12,000 were manufactured, exactly who used them and how they acquired the name Zouave are mysteries.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
rifle
rifle, percussion
date made
1863
associated date
1863
maker
Remington Arms Company, Inc.
place made
United States
Measurements
overall, rifle: 49 in x 2 1/4 in; 124.46 cm x 5.715 cm
ID Number
AF.22827
catalog number
22827
accession number
64127
subject
Firearms
Civil War
See more items in
Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military
Military
Civil War
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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Comments

The name "Zouave" was attached to the rife by a man named Bannerman after the civil war as a sales gimmick, and adopted by know nothing collectors and reenactors in the 20th century.IN FACT. Remington was one of hundreds of contractors who built and modified what the government documentation refers to as The HARPERS FERRY MODEL OF 1841/1855 altered. The so called 1863 Remington is just one of over 1000 known patterns of the 1841 rifle built or modified by different contactors between 1844 and 1864. MANY contractors built or modified as few as 500 or 1000 rifles. They are found with several different patch box sizes, several different barrel band configurations (always brass) , HUNDREDS of different bayonet styles ,and in both .54 and .58 CAL. ALL OF THEM saw wide spread use by both sides in the war of northern aggression. The Federals phased them out of service sometime in 1863-1864. The Confederate's used every one they could lay there hands on until the end of the war and beyond. BUT THEY NEVER AT ANY TIME had anything to do with the Zouave's and YES they saw wide issue and use.
Although I can not verify this, it's my understanding that this piece was issued to the Zouave regiment from New York state. The regiment wore red middle east style pantaloons. I have seen original photographs depicting that. I was born and raised in up-state New York, and learned this as local history.

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