American Gun Company

Hopkins, Ezekiel—Sword cutler. Worked at Hope Furnace, Scituate, Rhode Island where he made swords as early as 1760 and continued through the Revolution. (Many references, "The State of Rhode Island and the' Providence Plantations at the End of the Century," Edward Field, Providence, n.d.)

Hopkins & Allen—Established in Norwich, Conn., 1868. In the first twenty years of production ending in 1888 they had supplied 6,000 rifles and about 30,000 pistols. Made but a few percussion revolvers which are now becoming scarce. In the early part of the World War they contracted with the Belgian government for military rifles. Taken over by Marlin-Rockwell about the time of America's entry into the war. On December 2, 1916 the government contracted for 5 Berthier automatic rifles which were delivered. A second contract for 2,000 of these weapons was awarded on February 2, 1918 but these were not made. (pg. 70, Navy Ordnance Activities of the World War, Government Printing, Washington, 1920.)

Horn, Conrad & William—Riflemakers of Hazelton, Pa. They were brothers and activc about 1820-^0.

Horn, Stephen—Riflemaker of Easton, Pa. Active 1770-80, quit gun-smithing to operate a powder mill.

Horstman & Sons, W. H.—5th and Cherry Sts., Philadelphia, Pa. Produced swords and side arms, 1858-66.

Hossley, T. J.—Riflemaker. His shop was located in the open woods between E and N Streets, Vicksburg, Mississippi, 1866-75, before and after.

Hotchkiss, Jenjamin Berkeley—Born WTatertown, Connecticut, October 1, 1826, son of Asahel and Althea (Guernsey) Hotchkiss.

Hotchkiss early displayed an unusual aptitude in mechanics and after a common school curricula he entered a machine shop as an apprentice.

Andrew, a brother, was experimenting with a new form of cannon projectile so after completing his apprenticeship, Henjamin joined him in perfecting it. In 1855 they gave a demonstration of this projectile at the Washington Navy Yard but failed to arouse the interest they expected. They continued their efforts and finally, in 1859, deliberately made a present of a supply to the government of Mcxico. in i860 several hundred were sold to Japan and toward the close of the same year a small order was sccurcd from the U. S.

With the outbreak of the Civil War, large orders for projectiles and other ordnance were received and a factory was established in New York. It is claimed that Hotchkiss supplied a larger number of projectiles than all other manufacturers combined.

Among the earlier Ilotchkiss inventions were: an improved fuse; a punch projcctile for use against ironclads; improved time fuse; improved cannon rifling and a vastly improved projectile. After the war an explosive shell was developed and a packing for projectiles.

Secured patent August, 1869, on bolt action rifle in use in the military service 1878-85. This arm, which first attracted attention at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia in 1876, was known as Model 1878. In use in both the army and the navy, it was produced by Winchester at New Haven in the rifle and carbine foxm. Hotchkiss secured patent on swinging brcechlock, January 2, 1872 #122465.

The Hotchkiss magazine rifle, Model of 1883, was submitted to the Board in 1882 and recommended for field trials. The five shot magazine, like the first model, was placed in the butt-stock and was the last of its kind to be used by the U. S. This arm, an improvement of Model 1878, was produced by Winchester in army models only.

With the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War he contracted with the French government to manufacture his metallic cartridge cases for small arms. While engaged in this work his attention was directed to the failure of the machine gun then in use and he set about designing a more practical model which was patented in 1872.

This arm was distinguished by having five barrels (rifled) grouped around a common axis which revolved in front of a solid breech-lock. This block possessed, in one part, an opening through which to introduce the cartridges and another through which to extract the empty shells. This arm was immediately adopted by the French government and subsequently by the larger nations.

I11 1882 the Hotchkiss & Company was established with headquarters at 113 Chambers Street, New York, and branch factories in England, Germany, Austria, Russia and Italy. Produced Hotchkiss multi-barrel, revolving cannon; single barrel rapid firing field and mountain guns; yacht cannon and ammunition.

Hotchkiss died suddenly in Paris February 14, 1885 while working on a machine gun.

cf. The Breech-Loader in the Service, Claud E. Fuller, To-peka, Kansas, 1933. Many references.

Army and Navy Journal, June 13, 1885, pg. 31.

Dictionary of American Biography, Scribner, New York, 1929.

Howard Brothers—Gunmakers of Whitneyville and New Haven, Conn., 1859-69.

Howell, C. W.—Riilemaker of Martins Ferry, Ohio, 1855-66, before and after. Produced sporting rifles of the "plains" type and heavy match rifles.

Howland, Rufus J.—Riilemaker of Binghamton, N. Y., 1840-70.

Hubalek, Arthur—Rifle-barrel maker, 1167 Myrtle Ave., Brooklyn,

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