Monday, December 13, 2010


[Excerpt from UT Tyler digital library]
Gen. J.E.B. Stuart was among the
Confederate generals who used the
LeMat revolver in the War for Southern
Independence. (Library of Congress)
LeMat Revolver (National Park Service)
HARRISON FLAG [MARSHALL, TX], December 15, 1860, p. 3. c. 1
            Le Mat's Grape Shot Revolver.—We had an opportunity yesterday of examining the most effective weapon in the shape of a pistol we have yet seen.  It is an invention of Le Mat, of Louisiana, and has received the emphatic approval of General Scott, the Secretary of War, and a board of Army officers appointed to test the merits of new inventions in arms.  It is about the size and weight of Colt's Army Revolver, upon which it is modeled, all the advantages of which it embraces, but has several more chambers, and a centre barrel upon which the others revolve, which (centre barrel) carries a heavy minie ball, or a cartridge of fifteen buckshot.  All of these are discharged by one hammer and trigger, and together deliver ten shots.  There is also an extra set of chambers, easily attached, which increase the discharge to nineteen.  The weapon is loaded and handled in the same manner as the Army Revolver, and carries the same distance.  The pistol is handsomely finished, and can be sold for $30.  The presence of so many military gentlemen in the city, the condition of the country, and the purpose of Virginia to embark in the manufacture of arms, render the visit of Col. Le Mat to our City very opportune, and we commend him to the courtesy of those whose position particularly demands that they should be looking to the defences of the State.—Richmond Whig.

[Editor's Notes: The LeMat Revolver was a favorite weapon among Confederates leaders. Generals J.E.B. Stuart, Pierre Beauregard, Braxton Bragg, Richard H. Anderson and Major Henry Wirz were among the notables who used it. Beauregard was one of the backers in New Orleans of the inventor, Col. Jean LeMat. There were 1,500 LeMats manufactured in London, England and Paris, France and were imported into the Confederacy. The upper 9-shot rifled barrel took .40-caliber ammunition and the .63-caliber cannon barrel was loaded with buckshot. The hammer could be redirected to either barrel.]

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