James Paris Lee and His Guns

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Probably Lee’s most notable designs were the 14 million Lee-Enfield rifles, detachable box magazines and the semi-rimmed cartridge (6mm Lee Navy,…380ACP).  Lee made his first gun at 12 “…, using an old horse-pistol barrel, a newly carved walnut stock, and a priming pan made from a halfpenny. The gun failed to function effectively when first fired but started Lee’s interest in gunsmithing and invention.” [Wikipedia] (Reporter: Lee is one of my favorite gun designers.  If you did not go up and look at the guns on display – or missed the meeting – you missed seeing some you will never see again including his 1862 Single Shot Side-Swing Breech loading rifle and 1875 Single Shot Vertical Action Rifle, for example)  The two most common US arms of Lee were the later designs: the Remington-Lee M1885 and the Winchester-Lee or Lee Navy M1895, which were adopted militarily and also sold commercially.  The Lee Navy, although considered a straight pull, is a unique design.  It uses a cam-action and not the rotating bolt head of the other straight pulls.