History of Firearms (Timeline)
1232: The Chinese who invented gunpowder (black powder) first used it in a weapon - gunpowder filled tubes aka rockets.
1364: First recorded use of a firearm - shooter lit wicks by hand that ignited gunpowder that was loaded into the gun barrel.
1400: Matchlock guns - first mechanically firing of guns. Wicks were now attached to a clamp that sprang into gunpowder that was placed in a "flash pan".
1509: Wheel lock guns - wicks were replaced the wheel lock that generated a spark for igniting the gunpowder.
1630: Flintlock guns - the flintlock did two things mechanically, it opened the lid of the flash pan and provided an igniting spark.
1825: Percussion-cap guns invented by Reverend John Forsyth - firing mechanism no longer uses flash pan, a tube lead straight into the gun barrel, the tube had an explosive cap on it that exploded when struck
1830: Back action lock
1835: Colt revolver - first mass-produced, multi-shot, revolving firearms
1840: Pin-fire cartridges
1859: Full rim-fire cartridge
1860: Spencer repeating carbine patented
1861: Breech loaded guns
1862: Gatling Gun
1869: Center-fire cartridge
1871: Cartridge revolver
1873: Winchester rifle
1877: Double-action revolver
1879: Lee box magazine patented
1892: Automatic handguns invented by Joseph Laumann
1893: Borchardt pistol - automatic handgun with a separate magazine in the grip
1903: First automatic rifle a Winchester.
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