The Brown Bess family of muskets was used for over 100 years with minor alterations and most fired a .75 caliber ball. It was an essential weapon used during the expansion of the British Empire and acquired an iconic symbol of their imposing authority. The most common variants of the Brown Bess include the Long Land Pattern, Short Land Pattern, India Pattern, New Land Pattern Musket and the Sea Service Musket. The “2nd model” Short Land Pattern was similar to the final version of the 1st model (produced in 1756) except the barrel’s taper is less pronounced and its length was reduced to 42 inches. The Short Land Pattern saw extensive use throughout the American Revolution by both the British and the American Continentals lucky enough to capture them. The Brown Bess and its variations continued its dominance in the British Army until 1838. Variants of the Brown Bess still continued to be used by some regiments until the end of the Napoleonic Wars.
British (2nd Model) Short Land Pattern
.75 inch (19 mm) ball
Initial date of manufacture:
1796 to present1840