The Lamar Rifles


Fix Bayonet!

In 1853, at the urging of Secretary of War, Jefferson Davis, Hardee, then a Major, with the brevet rank of Lt. Colonel, began work on a new, updated manual, specifically designed to utilize the advantages of the improved rifles available. In 1855, Hardee's Rifle and Light Infantry Tactics became the standard instructional manual for the U.S. Army.

Hardee's work assumed that troops would be armed with the model 1841 "Mississippi" rifle, a two band weapon that had achieved popularity during the war with Mexico. He revised his work for the popular three band rifled percussion musket, which became the standard shoulder arm of the American Civil War. This revision was published in Mobile in 1861, and again in an edition for North Carolina Troops, in 1862. This version has been reprinted, and is now usually referred to as the "1862 Hardee's", or the "Confederate Hardee's".

 

Hardee 1855

187. The recruits being at shoulder arms, when the instructor Shall wish to fix bayonets, he will command :

Fix- BAYONET.
One time and three motions.

188. (First motion.) Grasp the piece with the left hand at the height of the shoulder, and detach it slightly from the shoulder with the right hand.
189. (Second motion.) Quit the piece with the right hand, lower it with the left hand, opposite the middle of the body, and place the butt between the feet without shock ; the rammer to the rear, the barrel vertical, the muzzle three inches from the body; seize it with the right hand at the upper band, and carry the left hand reversed to the handle of the sabre-bayonet.
190. (Third motion.) Draw the sabre-bayonet from the scabbard and fix it on the extremity of the barrel; seize the piece with the left hand, the arm extended, the right hand at the upper band.


Hardee 1862

Present- ARMS
One time and two motions.

143. (First motion.) With the right hand bring the piece erect before the centre of the body, the rammer to the front; at the same time seize the piece with the left hand half-way between the guide sight and lower band, the thumb extended along the barrel and against the stock, the fore-arm horizontal and resting against the body, the hand as high as the elbow.

156. (First motion.) Same as the first position of present arms No. 143.
(Second motion.) Carry the piece to the left side with the left hand -butt upon the ground- barrel to the front-piece inclined to the right and front resting upon the left thigh, muzzle six inches in front of the centre of the body-right hand grasping the piece just below the upper band, and left hand extended upon the piece.
(Third motion.) Seize the piece with the left hand at the muzzle and carry the right hand to the cartridge box.

187. The recruits being at shoulder arms, when the instructor shall wish to fix bayonets, he will command :
Fix- BAYONET.
One time and four motions.

188. (First, second, and third motions.) Same as in first, second, and third motions in the first time of loading, except in the third motion, the right hand is carried to the bayonet, grasping it, with the little finger up.
189. (Fourth motion.) Draw the bayonet form the scabbard, fix it, seize the piece with the right hand at the muzzle, the left hand resting on the barrel, arm extended.


Further reading …..

Shoulder- ARMS.
One time and two motions.
190. (First motion.) Raise the piece with the left hand and place it against the right shoulder, the rammer to the front; seize the piece at the same time with the right hand at the swell of the stock,
the thumb and fore-finger embracing the guard, the right arm nearly extended.
191. (Second motion.) Drop briskly the left hand by the side.
192. The recruits being at ordered arms, if the instructor should wish to fix bayonets, he will give the command:
Fix Bayonets,
when the pieces will be brought to the left side at one motion, and held as prescribed in No. 188. At the second motion the bayonets will be fixed as in No. 189; immediately resume the position of ordered arms.

Ed's note: It appears that when we are at shoulder arms and the command is given to fix bayonets, we shall fix bayonets and end in the position described above in #189. We then would wait for the order to go back to shoulder arms as given in #190 and #191. But, if we are at order arms and the command to fix bayonets is given, we should fix bayonets and immediately return to order arms, #192. Both 1855 and 1862 Hardee's and 1860 Gilliams have different procedures for fixing the bayonet when at order arms and when at shoulder arms. If you want to read more, or just need something to help you fall asleep, go to this link and enjoy! http://home.att.net/~Cap1MD/Drill.htm



 

 

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