What Is a Hawken Rifle?


Quick Answer

The Hawken rifle is a muzzle-loading rifle that was produced from 1823 to 1870. It is sometimes referred to as the buffalo gun, plains rifle or fur trapper's gun.

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Full Answer

The rifle was originally designed by Samuel Hawken, who manufactured and sold the gun with his brother Jacob in their St. Louis shop. The rifle weighed from 10 to 15 pounds, took round shot and had an effective firing range of 400 yards. The rifles were widely used throughout the United States during most of their production life, especially in the West. Production eventually ceased as breech-loading rifles became widely available and supplanted the muzzle loader.

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