The first production model bolt-action rifle was developed by Johann Nikolaus von Dreyse in 1824. Calling it the Nadelgewehr, or "needle gun," Dreyse designed the rifle after years spent working on new breech-loading rifle models.
The bolt-action rifle was a major step forward in firearms. With self-contained rounds held in a magazine, a bolt-action rifle rapidly fires multiple times before requiring reloading. Dreyse designed his needle gun with a pointed firing pin, or needle, that was capable of piercing the paper cartridge of a loaded round. The Dreyse needle gun had a rate of fire of between 10 and 12 rounds per minute.