Weapons of the British Army

Pattern 1839 Musket

The flintlock Long Land Pattern Musket (Brown Bess) and its derivatives, were the standard firearm of the British Army until 1838, when they were replaced by the smooth bore percussion cap musket.

Many of the Brown Bess flintlock muskets were to be converted to the new percussion system, which was known as the Pattern 1839 Musket. A fire in the Tower of London in 1841 detroyed many muskets before they could be converted.

The overall length of the musket is 55 inches (140 cm), and a barrel length of 39 inches (99 cm).

In 1838 the British War Department signed a contract for the production of 30,000 flintlock muskets; however before they could be assembled the War Department adopted the percussion ignition system, and ordered that the new units complied with the new specification.

The gun was obsolete by 1861; however large numbers were purchased by the Southern Confederacy and imported for use in the American Civil War (1861 to 1865).