Riot Shields


October 11, 1776 LONDON, May 18.

One of our correspondents has favoured us with the following intelligence: Ever since authentic accounts were received of the rifle men in America, Government has been casting about for some expedient to frustrate their skill. [??]… mantelets made of raw hides have been adopted. Six, seven, or more of these hides are nailed together, in an oblong figure, of about four feet in length, and about two feet in breadth, fixed upon a sort of axle tree which joins two small spokes, whereby the whole machine is easily moved by the man who fights from behind it. The mantelet is held erect by two curved steel rods, reaching from the top of the mantelet to the wooden spokes. The gun is fixed on a moving spring, so that when discharged, the soldier turns it about to charge again, without altering his situation.

The same correspondent, in a subsequent letter, informs us, that Government ordered 500 of these to be got ready with all possible despatch, under the direction of Colonel C—lls. And that last Tuesday the first 100 of them were proved at Woolwich. Twelve out of the number were condemned, the rest were really proof against all small shot, even at the distance of 50 yards. So that 500 men, behind these, are this summer, to dispute the point with our brethren the rifle -barrel-men.
The British are going to resort to riot shields to deal with the feared “Riflemen”.

Provided by: Ken #3

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