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69-caliber Ball Cartridge -- With the adoption of the U.S. Model 1795 69-caliber musket, this simple 69-caliber cartridge was used in every standard infantry arm of the United States until the introduction of the 58-caliber Model 1855 rifle-musket. The cartridge even survived the transition from flintlock to percussion; the only difference was a reduction in the powder charge because the M1842 smoothbore percussion musket did not require priming the pan. It soldiered on through the end of the Civil War, when the last smoothbore muskets were finally withdrawn from service.
These cartridges are faithful recreations of the originals, following the specifications in the 1841 US Army Ordnance Manual. They contain a single lead .662-caliber ball (same as the bullets shown at the top of the page) choked and tied in the paper cylinder, and the cartridges contain NO POWDER. You will have to add approximately 110 grains of musket powder for an M1842 smoothbore in safe shooting condition (adjust powder quantity accordingly for 69-caliber flintlocks) before putting the rounds in your cartridge box and going to the shooting range.
I can't resist mentioning one more item of historical significance about this particular cartridge: it remained in standard-issue front line service for well over 60 years, longer than any other caliber or cartridge used in the U.S. military history (5.56 NATO will break the record if still in service in 2023).
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