View single post by Albert Sailhorst
 Posted: Wed Sep 26th, 2007 08:27 pm
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Albert Sailhorst

Joined: Mon Sep 12th, 2005
Location: Aledo, Illinois USA
Posts: 559

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Stupid question, again due to inexperience, but why would fouling be an exception rather than a norm in an instance where entire regiments or brigades were firing continuously in a hot fight? Wouldn't a majority, if not all, the rifles begin to foul after a certain number of shots?

I digress to Michael's citations in an earlier post of his:

Col. William Hawley, 3rd Wisconsin Inf., wrote after the battle of Chancellorsville “For nearly three hours my command was thus under a heavy fire, fighting desperately and constantly gaining ground, until the arms of the men became so foul by frequent firing that they could be loaded but with difficulty.” (OR Vol. 25, 1:720)

Walthall’s Brigade, at Chickamauga, likewise had problems, not so much with fouling, even though that was part of the problem, but with improperly sized bullets. Lt. Harrison, brigade ordnance officer, wrote: “after the first few rounds, [some of the ammunition] was found too large, and frequently chocking the guns to the extent that they could [minies] could not be forced down...” (OR Vol. 30, 2:277)

According to these two sources both a regiment and a brigade had difficulty with fouling.

Sorry if I have become nit-picky, but I am compelled to believe the first person sources discussing fouling at a regimental/brigade level.

On the other hand, and here's my dilema, I know Johan is very knowledgeable and experienced, so I am confused as to what to think of the fouling issue!

This has turned in to a great discussion!

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