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History of U.S. Military Rifles

Fox News reports that “the U.S. Army’s upgraded M4A1 combat rifle is just the latest development in a category of weapons that American soldiers have carried since the country’s earliest days.”

“Even before there was actually a ‘United States’ there was what could arguably be considered the first true ‘American rifle.’ Known as the Pennsylvania rifle, the Kentucky rifle or simply the long rifle, it was designed for hunting and was characterized by an unusually long barrel, a unique development that was uncommon in the European rifles of the era.”

“Military history consultant and former United States Marine Corps Captain Dale Dye told FoxNews.com that, in the flintlock era, the long gun was the first to have grooves in the barrel. ‘These grooves, or rifling, along with the longer barrel, made the guns much more accurate than the British Brown Bess musket,’ he said.”

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