Friday, January 30, 2015

Lancaster 4-Barrel Howdah Pistol : A Brief (From FireArm Blog

Lancaster 4-Barrel Howdah Pistol
The above pistol was made by Charles Lancaster of London and dates from the mid 19th century.  The pistol is chambered in .476 calibre centre fire, which possibly dates the pistol to the 1870s, and has four barrels which are fired in sequence by a rotating firing pin mechanism housed inside the pistol’s receiver.  Howdah pistols like this one, and those percussion pistols which preceded it, were extremely popular with British officers between the 1840s and the 1890s.  Typically they were large calibre pistols with two or more barrels.  The idea originated from the need for a large calibre defensive pistol for European hunters traveling in India - the word ‘Howdah' comes from the Hindi name of the platform which was mounted on an elephant's back during a hunt.  The early Howdah pistols were little more than sawn-off double barrel large calibre hunting rifles.


Cigarette card showing a Howdah during a Tiger Hunt (source)

However, Howdah pistols also became popular with serving officers who needed a reliable sidearm which was capable of stopping an attacker while on campaign in India or Africa.  As such they were often carried in the field as backup weapons, firing larger calibre bullets and generally being more reliable than early service revolvers.  
The example shown above has a break-open action with a robust locking latch and a built in automatic ejector.  Some other interesting features of the pistol are its trigger system which has a folding trigger extension which allows the firer to pull the trigger back actuating a hair trigger which allows the pistol to be fired more accurately - not unlike a single action trigger.  The other interesting feature is the pistol’s progressively twisting oval rifling - patented by Lancaster.
The Lancaster family were an established London gunmaking firm set up by Charles’ father.  The younger Lancaster was a proponent of oval rifling, a system which uses a slightly oval bore rather than rifling to impart spin on projectiles. This made the weapon less susceptible to fouling but does affect overall accuracy.  The system was popular in the 1850s with it being tested in everything from rifles to pistols to artillery.  However, it proved more successful in artillery than in small arms. Lancaster also designed the Lancaster carbine which was adopted in limited numbers by the British Army in the late 1850s.  Lancaster’s privately commissioned pistols, rifles and shotguns war finely crafted and extremely well made with many surviving today.
Image Source Lancaster 4-Barrel Howdah Pistol
The above pistol was made by Charles Lancaster of London and dates from the mid 19th century.  The pistol is chambered in .476 calibre centre fire, which possibly dates the pistol to the 1870s, and has four barrels which are fired in sequence by a rotating firing pin mechanism housed inside the pistol’s receiver.  Howdah pistols like this one, and those percussion pistols which preceded it, were extremely popular with British officers between the 1840s and the 1890s.  Typically they were large calibre pistols with two or more barrels.  The idea originated from the need for a large calibre defensive pistol for European hunters traveling in India - the word ‘Howdah' comes from the Hindi name of the platform which was mounted on an elephant's back during a hunt.  The early Howdah pistols were little more than sawn-off double barrel large calibre hunting rifles.


Cigarette card showing a Howdah during a Tiger Hunt (source)

However, Howdah pistols also became popular with serving officers who needed a reliable sidearm which was capable of stopping an attacker while on campaign in India or Africa.  As such they were often carried in the field as backup weapons, firing larger calibre bullets and generally being more reliable than early service revolvers.  
The example shown above has a break-open action with a robust locking latch and a built in automatic ejector.  Some other interesting features of the pistol are its trigger system which has a folding trigger extension which allows the firer to pull the trigger back actuating a hair trigger which allows the pistol to be fired more accurately - not unlike a single action trigger.  The other interesting feature is the pistol’s progressively twisting oval rifling - patented by Lancaster.
The Lancaster family were an established London gunmaking firm set up by Charles’ father.  The younger Lancaster was a proponent of oval rifling, a system which uses a slightly oval bore rather than rifling to impart spin on projectiles. This made the weapon less susceptible to fouling but does affect overall accuracy.  The system was popular in the 1850s with it being tested in everything from rifles to pistols to artillery.  However, it proved more successful in artillery than in small arms. Lancaster also designed the Lancaster carbine which was adopted in limited numbers by the British Army in the late 1850s.  Lancaster’s privately commissioned pistols, rifles and shotguns war finely crafted and extremely well made with many surviving today.
Image Source Lancaster 4-Barrel Howdah Pistol
The above pistol was made by Charles Lancaster of London and dates from the mid 19th century.  The pistol is chambered in .476 calibre centre fire, which possibly dates the pistol to the 1870s, and has four barrels which are fired in sequence by a rotating firing pin mechanism housed inside the pistol’s receiver.  Howdah pistols like this one, and those percussion pistols which preceded it, were extremely popular with British officers between the 1840s and the 1890s.  Typically they were large calibre pistols with two or more barrels.  The idea originated from the need for a large calibre defensive pistol for European hunters traveling in India - the word ‘Howdah' comes from the Hindi name of the platform which was mounted on an elephant's back during a hunt.  The early Howdah pistols were little more than sawn-off double barrel large calibre hunting rifles.


Cigarette card showing a Howdah during a Tiger Hunt (source)

However, Howdah pistols also became popular with serving officers who needed a reliable sidearm which was capable of stopping an attacker while on campaign in India or Africa.  As such they were often carried in the field as backup weapons, firing larger calibre bullets and generally being more reliable than early service revolvers.  
The example shown above has a break-open action with a robust locking latch and a built in automatic ejector.  Some other interesting features of the pistol are its trigger system which has a folding trigger extension which allows the firer to pull the trigger back actuating a hair trigger which allows the pistol to be fired more accurately - not unlike a single action trigger.  The other interesting feature is the pistol’s progressively twisting oval rifling - patented by Lancaster.
The Lancaster family were an established London gunmaking firm set up by Charles’ father.  The younger Lancaster was a proponent of oval rifling, a system which uses a slightly oval bore rather than rifling to impart spin on projectiles. This made the weapon less susceptible to fouling but does affect overall accuracy.  The system was popular in the 1850s with it being tested in everything from rifles to pistols to artillery.  However, it proved more successful in artillery than in small arms. Lancaster also designed the Lancaster carbine which was adopted in limited numbers by the British Army in the late 1850s.  Lancaster’s privately commissioned pistols, rifles and shotguns war finely crafted and extremely well made with many surviving today.
Image Source
Lancaster 4-Barrel Howdah Pistol
The above pistol was made by Charles Lancaster of London and dates from the mid 19th century.  The pistol is chambered in .476 calibre centre fire, which possibly dates the pistol to the 1870s, and has four barrels which are fired in sequence by a rotating firing pin mechanism housed inside the pistol’s receiver.  Howdah pistols like this one, and those percussion pistols which preceded it, were extremely popular with British officers between the 1840s and the 1890s.  Typically they were large calibre pistols with two or more barrels.  The idea originated from the need for a large calibre defensive pistol for European hunters traveling in India - the word ‘Howdah' comes from the Hindi name of the platform which was mounted on an elephant's back during a hunt.  The early Howdah pistols were little more than sawn-off double barrel large calibre hunting rifles.

Cigarette card showing a Howdah during a Tiger Hunt (source)
However, Howdah pistols also became popular with serving officers who needed a reliable sidearm which was capable of stopping an attacker while on campaign in India or Africa.  As such they were often carried in the field as backup weapons, firing larger calibre bullets and generally being more reliable than early service revolvers.  
The example shown above has a break-open action with a robust locking latch and a built in automatic ejector.  Some other interesting features of the pistol are its trigger system which has a folding trigger extension which allows the firer to pull the trigger back actuating a hair trigger which allows the pistol to be fired more accurately - not unlike a single action trigger.  The other interesting feature is the pistol’s progressively twisting oval rifling - patented by Lancaster.
The Lancaster family were an established London gunmaking firm set up by Charles’ father.  The younger Lancaster was a proponent of oval rifling, a system which uses a slightly oval bore rather than rifling to impart spin on projectiles. This made the weapon less susceptible to fouling but does affect overall accuracy.  The system was popular in the 1850s with it being tested in everything from rifles to pistols to artillery.  However, it proved more successful in artillery than in small arms. Lancaster also designed the Lancaster carbine which was adopted in limited numbers by the British Army in the late 1850s.  Lancaster’s privately commissioned pistols, rifles and shotguns war finely crafted and extremely well made with many surviving today.
Image Source
(via historicalfirearms)

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Guns from First Indian Republic day

A salute of 21 guns and the unfurling of the Indian National flag by Dr. Rajendra Prasad heralded the historic birth of the Indian Republic on January 26, 1950; 894 days after our country became a dominion following withdrawal of British Rule. Since then, every year the day is celebrated with great pride and happiness all over the nation.


The seeds of a republican nation were sowed at the Lahore session of the Indian National Congress at the midnight of 31st December 1929. The session was held under the presidency of Pt. Jawarhar Lal Nehru.

The Lahore Session paved way to the Civil Disobedience movement.

It was decided that January 26, 1930 would be observed as the Purna Swaraj (complete Independence) Day. Many Indian political parties and Indian revolutionaries from all over the country united to observe the day with honour and pride.


Source: http://www.ndtv.com/photos/news/republic-finally-famous-words-6693/slide/1

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Maharana Pratap : Reasons Why Dheer Bai Bhatiyani Cannot Die by a Gun Shot

Interesting... take on the Firearms usage in the popular TV Serial MAHARANA Pratap.
 
The latest promos of Maharana Pratap is giving a shock to everybody – Jagmal is seen carrying a gun, and pointing towards his Rani Maa Dheer Bai Bhatiyani. It is still not clear whether Bhatiyani dies or not in this incident, but in reality we are sure Dheer Bai Bhatiyani did not die by a gun shot.
Now, since Bhatiyani is a lesser known person of the past whose history is a big question mark, Maharana Pratap CVs have creative freedom to play with the character. However, Jagmal killing her with a gun is a deliberate creative blunder. We tell you how:
The first question is, “Did 16th century India have hand guns?”
The Evolution of Artillery in Medieval India happened after the Battle of Panipat where Babur introduced heavy weapons. These guns were so heavy that it was first mounted on a cart, and then blown with the help of two hands. Shatrunal, Zamburak, swivel guns and Shahin were the names. 
canon weapons Maharana Pratap : Reasons Why Dheer Bai Bhatiyani Cannot Die by a Gun Shot
Swivel were carried on animal’s back, shatrunal were camel barrel guns shot from camel’s back, and zamburaks were long swivels. All these were used in Battle of Panipat by Babur where he defeated Ibrahim Lodi, and also in Batttle of Kanauj where he defeated Rana Sanga – Jagmal and Rana Pratap’s grandfather. North Indian rulers those days had no clue about these weapons and that is why Babur could easily defeat them at various occasions.
The Early Gun Arquebus was Used Then, but not in India – So where did this small Gun used by Jagmal come from?
Matthias Corvinus, a Hungarian ruler first used Arquebus during his reign from 1458 to 1490. It was also used by Russians in early 1500s and in Italian wars in 1600s. These arquebuses were used in Europe by various kings. Asians back then used only  snap matchlok which was introduced by Portuguese in Japan around 1543 and according to a book by Rainer Daehnhardt – The Bewitched Gun : The Introduction of the Firearm in the Far East by the Portuguese, it seems that these matchloks were manufactured in Goa, the capital of Portuguese in 1550
arquebus weapon maharana pratap Maharana Pratap : Reasons Why Dheer Bai Bhatiyani Cannot Die by a Gun Shot
Mughal Introduced Muzzle Loaded Musket in India, the one that produced huge smokes
It is said that Akbar introduced the matchlock musket in the 16th century India. If you check the photo of these muskets, it is very long unlike the one shown in Jagmal’s hand. Also, these muskets used gun powder and iron balls to hit the target. So, it is obvious if Jagmal had used these muskets, it would produce lot of smoke inside the palace. In addition, their would have been huge sound that would alarm each and every person in the palace.
musket weapon used by mughals Maharana Pratap : Reasons Why Dheer Bai Bhatiyani Cannot Die by a Gun Shot
Moreover, it is highly impossible that Jagmal could get a musket for himself because unlike the modern guns the firing from these muskets were highly unaccurate, it could go anywhere. Making it very clear that even if Uday Singh possessed the hand held muskets in his garage it would no way reach Jagmal’s dirty hands. Besides, we have not read Pratap or any Rajput in 16th century getting trained in using such hand helds musket.
There Is no Proof of Jagmal Hitting or Killing his Mother
It is a known fact that Bhatiyani wanted Jagmal to become the next heir which Udai Singh agreed upon. However, if Jagmal would have hit/killed his mother, Udai Singh would have never accepted her last wish to crown Jagmal as his next heir, for the sake of Mewar (No matter how highly influenced he would have been by her).
maharana pratap jagmal bhatiyani Maharana Pratap : Reasons Why Dheer Bai Bhatiyani Cannot Die by a Gun Shot
So, Dheer Bai cannot die by Jagmal’s gun shot. There has to be some other reason. Also, if she survives this attack in the serial, it proves nothing besides making a mockery of many things.
Reference:
The Evolution of the Artillery By Romesh C. Butalia
War and Society in Late Medieval and Early Modern Hungary
 The Bewitched Gun : The Introduction of the Firearm in the Far East by the Portuguese, by Rainer Daehnhardt
Source: http://indiaopines.com/maharana-pratap-dheer-bai-bhatiyani/
Image Source: 1, 2, 3,




Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Sher Shah's guns among 23 pieces of Indian history go missing!


A total of 24 centrally-protected monuments and artefacts including rock inscriptions of Satna in Madhya Pradesh are untraceable.
The list includes monument such as guns of Emperor Sher Shah at Sadia in Tisukia in Guwahati Circle and states in which the monuments were missing are Arunachal Pradesh, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.
Replying to a question, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Tourism and Culture, Mahesh Sharma, said Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has made efforts to locate the untraceable monuments through field offices based on old records, revenue maps and published reports.
The minister also said that the National Monuments Authority has not submitted any specific report to the government on disappeared or untraceable historical monuments under ASI.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Some of the best Canon Museums



Largest and oldest Military Museum : Austria, Vienna
http://www.hgm.at/en.html

General George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership, Washington
http://www.generalpatton.org/

Imperial War Museum, London
http://www.iwm.org.uk/

les invalides army museum paris
http://www.musee-armee.fr/en/english-version.html

National Museum of the USAF, Ohio
http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/


Books

The Evolution of the Artillery in India: From the Battle of Plassey (1757) to the Revolt of 1857
By R. C. Butalia
Published by Allied Publishers, 1998
ISBN 8170238722, 9788170238720