Enfield Bullets

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 Enfield Bullets

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PostSubject: Enfield Bullets   11/10/2009, 11:46 pm

The Enfield 1853 Rifle-Musket was also used by both the North and the South in the American Civil War, and was the second most widely used infantry weapon in the war, surpassed only by the Springfield Model 1861 Rifled Musket. The Confederates imported more Enfields during the course of the war than any other small arm, buying from private contractors and gun runners when the British government refused to sell them arms after it became obvious that the Confederacy could not win the war. It has been estimated that over 900,000 P53 Enfields were imported to America and saw service in every major engagement from the Battle of Shiloh (April, 1862) and the Siege of Vicksburg (May 1863), to the final battles of 1865. At the Battle of Gettysburg on July 2nd, 1863, the 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry, led by Colonel Joshua L. Chamberlain, were armed with Enfield 1853 Rifle-Muskets during their famous bayonet charge against a relentless attack by Confederate Forces attempting to destroy the left flank of the Union Army on Little Round Top. Here is an excerpt from Chamberlain's Official Battle Report:

"The intervals of the struggle were seized to remove our wounded (and those of the enemy also), to gather ammunition from the cartridge-boxes of disabled friend or foe on the field, and even to secure better muskets than the Enfields, which we found did not stand service well."

The ferocious charge of the 20th Maine, with bayonets fixed to their Enfield Rifle-Muskets, was victorious against the stunned Confederates, and Colonel Chamberlain received the Medal of Honor for his day on Little Round Top.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pattern_1853_Enfield

Here are a few examples of Enfield bullets. These are flat based and some are stamped with a ".57" meaning they are .57 caliber.






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hang7575
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PostSubject: Re: Enfield Bullets   12/6/2009, 9:09 am

I am no bullet expert by any means just that Enfields and Gardners are my favorite bullets to collect. Actually the 57 stamped in the bottom of enfields bullets had nothing to do with caliber, there were 16 or more different numbers stamped inside the bases. they were done by the forming punch when bullet was made. They think that they were there to tell when the forming punches were worn and they also can help ID what company in England made the bullet. The confederates made there own enfield style bullets ,were nose cast and had a cone cavity with no lettering
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PostSubject: Re: Enfield Bullets   12/12/2009, 11:45 pm

hang7575 wrote:
I am no bullet expert by any means just that Enfields and Gardners are my favorite bullets to collect. Actually the 57 stamped in the bottom of enfields bullets had nothing to do with caliber, there were 16 or more different numbers stamped inside the bases. they were done by the forming punch when bullet was made. They think that they were there to tell when the forming punches were worn and they also can help ID what company in England made the bullet. The confederates made there own enfield style bullets ,were nose cast and had a cone cavity with no lettering

Thanks bud! We appreciate the info. I do remember there being different variations to the Enfield. Would you happen to know a good research source such as a book or website for Enfield bullets?

-Ian

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PostSubject: Re: Enfield Bullets   12/13/2009, 6:27 am

http://www.baymediapro.com/collection/bullet_search.asp is a good website for all civil war bullets. I use the Handbook of Civil War Bullets and Cartridges BY JIm and Dean Thomas you can get it at Thomas Publications
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PostSubject: Enfield Bullets   3/30/2010, 3:33 pm

R&R,

New member here and a confirmed leadhead. The "enfield", properly named "British Rifle Musket Bullet cal .577", is one of the most varied bullets in the collecting community. Marked base examples can be pretty pricey and some are getting really tough to find.

I have an article posted on my projectiles forum that might interest you. It concerns the British Anderson Bullet Press and shows how the bullet was actually made. The article also shows examples of many of the varieties of british basemarks.

http://www.civilwarprojectiles.com/articles/anderson_machine.htm

BTW: The 57 in the base of the bullets is not caliber but diameter. Originally, these bullets were designed to be .565 inches in diameter to fit the .577 Enfield Rifle Musket. After a study performed by Arthur B. Hawes concerning loading problems by British troops in India it was determined that a better fitting diameter would be .555 inches, allowing for easier loading when the wax/tallow cartridge lubricant was frozen in the mountains. Enfield bullets marked 57 are .565 diameter and those marked 55 are the later .555 diameter bullets.

Tom Henrique
(looking forward to some fun discussion on this forum)
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PostSubject: Re: Enfield Bullets   3/30/2010, 4:59 pm

Thanks Tom! I just checked out your site and Man, oh, man... You've done your homework. I really like the diagrams you have especially the Anderson Machine animation. It really puts everything into perspective as to how an Enfield is made.

Also, thanks for the explanation on the stamped 57 / marks on the cavity.

Guys, You should really check out Tom's site especially if you've ever wondered about Enfields. He has a great page on it!

-Ian
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