Dominic S.

Okotoks, Alberta

Calgary Regional Heritage School Fair

The Flintlock Pistol

My project is on flintlock weapons technology. Using my hand-made replica of an 1812-era flintlock pistol, we will be exploring the people who used the gun as well as how to load it. Also, we will discuss who really used the weapon: the army for whom it was designed or the privateers!

What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

The most interesting thing I learned about this project was that the flintlock pistol was used mostly by the Privateers, who were pirates commissioned by the Crown or government. I was astonished that privateers could get away with legally being pirates. It was interesting to know that pistols where not used in military conflict as much as I thought they were.

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

Through this study I learned about the flintlock technology that was in use throughout the War of 1812. I had the opportunity find out how to load and use a flintlock pistol and how it was used by both the army and Privateers following the war. I enjoyed learning how officers such as Sir Isaac Brock and General James Wolfe would have carried these weapons.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

People had less medical advantages than today, which is a substantial advantage when it comes to warfare. If you had an injury caused by a flintlock pistol, the wound could become infected and still prove fatal after the fact. Today we can prevent infection and repair the injury, giving the soldier a chance at recovery.