Crank em out

Here we see a beautiful example of perhaps the best .45-70 chambered Gatling design, the Colt-produced Model 1890.

This wonder, fitted with 10 31-inch octagon barrels, could let those big buffalo-killer sized rounds rip at 525 rounds per minute, which would produce a giant billow of burnt black powder in the process. Weighing in at 200-pounds (sans bipod) this thing was a beast to run but had all the bells and whistles of a modern Gatling design including the Murphy Stop and the Bruce Feed.

This particular specimen sold last week at auction (Rock Island) for $54K.

Individual U.S. Army officers bought a few of Dr. Richard J. Gatling’s guns in the Civil War in .42-caliber and .58-caliber, and later the Army adopted the gun in 1866 and later morphed into the Model 1874, 1876, 1877, 1883 and 1889 guns chambered in .45-70.

On the lead-up to the Spanish-American War, the Army purchased 53 Gatling Guns in .45-70 over a three-year program: 18 M1890s, 17 M1891s, and 18 M1892s, and were the last in that caliber ordered by Uncle Sam.

The M1893 models and later were chambered in .30 Government (.30-40 Krag)– Lt. John “Gatling Gun” Parker famously took a quartet of M1895s to San Juan Hill in 1898 while the Marines had much lighter and more modern M1895 Colt–Brownings in 6mm. Not to be dissuaded, the Army ordered even more Gatlings in 1900 and even converted them to run the 30.06, keeping them in service until the cusp of WWI.

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