US Henry Model 1860 ..44 Caliber Rifle

  • American West
  • 1 min

By Crusader1307

Manufactured by Benjamin Henry in 1860, The Henry Rifle was superior to both The Sharps and Spencers "repeating" rifles of the day. Noted for it's Brass reciever plating and small stock signature, The Henry Rifle was still not successful in winning a major Government Contract over Sharps and Spencer. The US Government only purchased 1,360 Models (for Cavalry use). Henry Rifle's used a revolutionary "breech loading tube system", in which 16 brass cartridge fitted rounds were pre-packed in aluminum tubes. The tubes were loaded through the rear Stock. Lever action cocking initiated the cyclic rate of fire. Using a .44 Cal. Round, it was jokingly referred to as the "Rifle that was loaded on Sunday, and fired all week".

 

Many soldiers in The Union Army would purchase their own, figuring that they could increase their "life expectancy" with only in combat. The Henry weighed 9-pounds and was 46-inches long. They had an effective range of 900-yards and a maximum of 1,200-yards. 14,000 were produced until 1866, but versions remained on use well into the 1890s. Made famous as the unofficial Rifle used during The Battle of The Little Big Horn (1876) during The Sioux Indian Wars, even Native American Warchief Crazy Horse carried one.