Although initially developed in 1868 by American Firearms Innovator Hiram Berdan, his later Model 1870 was specifically contracted by The Imperial Russian Army. Berdan had great experience in Firearms designs. He is considered the "Father" of the Modern Sniper. His creation of a Sharps-Pattern Rifle was issued to the first US Sharpshooters Regiment (of which he commanded in The American Civil War of 1861-1865). Berdan eventually sold his licensing concerns for The Model 1870 to many European Countries eager to retire their standard Muskets. It is estimated that 3 Million of his Rifle designs were manufactured in Europe between 1872 and 1891.Weighing 9-pounds and only 50-inches in length, they were easy to carry and fire. They used a paper/semi-jacketed round. They were highly accurate up to 300-yards. Imperial Russian would quickly replace it's Nagant Rifle with Berdan's. So popular, some of these Models could still be seen on the battlefields of the early years of World War I.