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Famous Match Rifle Shots 
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Post Famous Match Rifle Shots
COL J.K MILLNER.jpg [ 17.62 KiB | Viewed 697 times ]

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J.K Millner's Perfect score 15 /15 with no sighter shots at 1000 yards.
Scotland 3rd, Ireland 2nd, America 1st

At the Centenial Match of 1876 at Creedmoor, USA, Millner scored fifteen bull's-eyes at 1,000 yards for an unprecedented maximum score of 75 x 75. His target diagram is pictured and taken from the New York Tribune of 15 September 1876.

The target was as follows. Bull's eye, 36 inch circle counting 5; Centre, 54 inch circle surrounding the bull's eye, counting 4; Inner, 6 x 6 feet enclosing the centre, counting 3; Outer, the remainder of the target, being a strip 3 feet wide on each edge and counting 2.

In the 1908 London Olympics, shooting events were held at Bisley.

Millner won the 1000 yard Match Rifle gold medal with a score of 98x100.

Major Authur Leech founder of THE IRISH RIFLE ASSOCIATION & Captain of the Irish Rifle team challanged the rifle men of America in 1873.

To THE Amateur Rifle Club.

The Executive Committee to whom was committed the management of the International Rifle Match, respectfully report :

The International Rifle Match had its origin in the following letter from Major Arthur Blennerhasset Leech, the Captain of the Irish Rifle Team (then the holders of the Elcho Shield and the Champions of Great Britain), which was first published in the New York Herald, of November 22d, 1873 :

CHALLENGE TO THE RIFLEMEN OF AMERICA FROM THE RIFLEMEN OF IRELAND, REPRESENTED BY MEMBERS OF THE IRISH RIFLE ASSOCIATION.

Mr. A. Blennerhasset Leech, founder in 1867 of the Irish Rifle Association, will select from its members a Team which he will match against an equal number of the representative American rifle shots, to shoot in the United States, in the Autumn of 1874, on the following conditions :

Targets, /Scoring, <Sbc, — Same as adopted by the National Rifle Association of Great Britain, at Wimbledon, 1873 (when the Irish Eight won the International Match for the Elcho Shield, beating England and Scotland).

Ranges. — 800, 900, 1,000 and 1,100 yards.

Rifles, — Any, not exceeding ten pounds weight, but without telescope sights or hair triggers.

Position. — Any, but no artificial rest permitted either for the rifle or person of the shooter.

The American Team to be composed exclusively of riflemen born in the United States, and to shoot with rifles of American manufacture. The Irish Team will shoot with rifles by Rigby of Dublin.


As this challenge is given to decide title to the rifle championship of the
world, Mr. Leech will require a sufficient stake to be put down, not for the sake of a trifling pecuniary gain, but as a guarantee that the Irish Team will meet the representative shots of America. Mr. Leech desires to draw the attention of the American people to the act that the laws of Great Britian forbid the formation in Ireland of rifle corps similar to those which exist in great numbers in England and Scotland, and that any skill acquired by Irishmen in rifle shooting is the result of individual exertion under difficulties arising from discouraging legislation.

ARTHUR B. LEECH.
Dublin, Oct. Slst, 1873.

This challenge was brought to the notice of the Board of Directors of the National Rifle Association, but no action was taken by them in regard to it.

Shortly afterwards, and on Friday, December 5, 1873, this Club held a meeting, at which the matter was brought up and a resolution passed authorizing the Executive Committee to accept the challenge, provided satisfactory terms could be arranged.

At this time the Amateur Rifle Club consisted of but sixty three members. Although it had been organized since October, 1872, it had done nothing until the opening of the Range at Creedmoor, in June, 1873 ; and the meeting at which the challenge was accepted was really the first meeting of the Club ever convened since its organization. During the summer its membership had not only increased, but a gratifying improvement in marksmanship had been displayed. There had been however but one competition at distances over 500 yards, and the great majority of its members, including most of those who subsequently formed the Team and Reserve which represented America in the International Match, had never fired a shot at 1,000 yards. All were then using the common sporting rifie with the usual hunting sights; the pistol stocks, wind gauges, vernier sights, heavy charges and improved bullets now in general use, being then unknown in this country, except by reputation.

In accepting the challenge, the Club were conscious of their own weakness, and sought to act not for themselves but solely as the representatives of the Riflemen of America to whom the challenge was addressed ; their utmost hope being that they would be able out of their number to develop two or three sufficiently skillful to constitute a part of the Team, it being expected that the remainder would be composed of rifleuien from other sections of the country and not connected with the Club.

In pursuance of this action of the Club, the Executive Committee requested their President, Col. Geo. W. Wingate, to open a correspondence with Mr. Leech on the subject, which was accordingly done, and the letters from time to time submitted to the Committee and published in the newspapers.

This correspondence resulted in an agreement upon a programme for the match, which conformed to the terms of the original chal-lenge with but two exceptions ; the first being that the shooting at 1,100 yards was omitted, inasmuch as the range at Creedmoor would not admit of practice at over 1,000 yards, and the other, that the minimum number of competitors was fixed at six instead of four.

In the meantime a circular was prepared, addressed to the Riflemen of America, setting out the terms upon which the match would be conducted, together with full information in regard to the qualifications required of competitors, as well as to the rifles, sights, &c., to be used, and requesting such as desired to compete
for places in the Team to send to the Secretary of the Club before July 1st, 1874, a swom statement giving their full name, age, residence, &c., and such score as had been made by them in fifteen shots at 800, 900, and 1,000 yards, upon any occasion, together
with the style of rifle used, its weight, trigger-pull, &c.*

THE LEECH CUP winners & history. http://www.nrahq.org/compete/nat-trophy/tro-079.pdf

The New York Times. Published June 29 1875

Dublin, Thursday, June 17, 1875


NEW-YORK AMATEUR RIFLE CLUB V DUBLIN SHOOTING CLUB. IRELAND Dollymount Strand.


From a special correspondent.

DUBLIN'S GREETING.

A cordial feeling - Metropolitan sights And Characteristics - Quarrels of the Irish Newspapers- A Preliminary Match Description of the grounds.

From the article as the special correspondent walks around Dublin .... The Irish Way......Restriction is the way of life.......The small hamlet of Dollymount.... Dame Street- The Bank....Dame Street lined with magnificent Banking and Mercantile house...... The second great rifle match between representative teams of Ireland and America......will begin at 11 o'clock this morning.......The people of America have nothing to fear their.....

Creedmoor and the International Matches
http://www.researchpress.co.uk/creedmoo ... _irish.htm




[quote]


07 Feb 2012 18:42
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
"A very famous service rifle shot"

Robert MC Vittie born in Scotland 1839
Became know as the best all-round shot in the world after he took part in the centenial match at creedmoor new york 1867.

Scotland third place, Ireland second place and the USA first.
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http://www.mcvittie.co.uk/Bob%20the%20Shot.htm

Quote:
"If I were to condense into one word all the advice that I have given or may give, that word would be perseverance.

Cultivate a spirit of untiring energy. Just as "Rome was not built in a day," so neither can any famous marksman make his reputation by any one performance. It is only after years of steady perseverance, and with a spirit undaunted by difficulties or discouragements, that the tyro can become the "crack".



07 Feb 2012 21:29
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
J.K Millner International Rifle Shot & One of the founding members of Irish Red Setter Club 1882-2007
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http://www.irishredsetterclub.com/home/ ... &Itemid=67


Quote:
Col J K Millner went on to become Hon. Secretary of The Irish Red Setter Club. In 1908 he became Ireland’s first Olympic Gold medalist in Rifle Shooting at the age of 58, and one of the foremost sportsmen of his day. Millner wrote The Irish Setter, its History and Training in 1924 which was first and last book written by an Irishman on the breed, a matter which I hope change in the near future. He was the last commander of the Carlow Militia; he became legendary after losing Ireland an International long range rifle shooting match against America in 1874, when he shot a bulls-eye in the wrong target. He was born in 1850 and died in 1931. His interest in the breed spanned his long life. One of his first setters had a profound influence on the breed and became one of the foundation sires of the modern Irish setter. That dog was Frisco, who was born in 1877. Among his other noted dogs were Airnie, Aileen and Spalpeen. The experiences of his lifetime and his considerable research into the breed are contained in his valued book.

http://www.irishredandwhitesetterclub.org/millner.htm
http://www.goantiques.com/the-irish-setter-2206226

THE IRISH SETTER ITS HISTORY AND TRAINING By Colonel J.K. Millner. A VINTAGE DOG BOOKS CLASSIC REPRINT
http://www.alibris.com/booksearch?autho ... id=3396902
Originally published in 1924, this was the first book to be solely devoted to the Irish Setter. It is now extremely rare and very expensive in this first edition. VINTAGE DOG BOOKS have now republished it using the original text and photographs, as part of their CLASSIC BREED BOOKS series. The author was a well known judge and breeder, his dogs winning many prestigious prizes during his long career. He was also an experienced shot, and used his Irish Setters to good effect on the grouse moors of Scotland. One hundred and twelve pages contain six detailed chapters: - The Author's Statements. - Some Old Strains. - The Setter up to Dog Show Times. - Irish Setters of the Nineteenth Century. - The Irish Red Setter Club. - Training. There are a number of excellent photographs of famous dogs of the day and also some of their pedigrees. The Publisher has also added an additional gallery of famous dogs at the rear of the book. This is a fascinating read for any Irish Setter enthusiast or historian of the breed, but also contains much information that is still useful and practical today. Many of the earliest dog breed books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. VINTAGE DOG BOOKS are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.



22 Aug 2012 20:52
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Black Adder thanks for posting the above very interesting stuff.


Sikamick


23 Aug 2012 19:04
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Interesting from the historical prospective, even more so, if you were able to try your hand at it for real. Did you know, some shooting bodies here in Ireland hold claim on it, or so it appears.
To settle it, a challenge match should be mandatory. Before any of that though, there is the small matter of propellant & suitable competition ranges to front the proposal from 300-600 yards +/- ;)
http://www.countrysideallianceireland.o ... s-shooting


20 Jun 2014 13:10
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Blackadder wrote:
Interesting from the historical prospective, even more so, if you were able to try your hand at it for real. Did you know, some shooting bodies here in Ireland hold claim on it, or so it appears.
To settle it a challenge match should be mandatory. Before any of that though, there is the small matter of propellant & suitable competition ranges to front the proposal from 300-600 yards +/- ;)
http://www.countrysideallianceireland.o ... s-shooting


Well, the usual long-range rifle compeitions of yore BEGAN at 600 yards, and went on out to 1200 yards - as, indeed, they still do when the MLAGB and HBSA shoot in UK, and the Long-range shooters of USA and Canada. Europe, in particular Germany, with the withdrawal of the British and their lovely long military ranges at Sennelager, Hoehne and Arsbeck has to come over to the UK to shoot long range rifle of ANY kind, let alone historical guns in context.

There IS a long range in the southern part of Ireland where such a match would be possible - however, to my knowledge - there are no suitable black-powder muzzle-loaders like the Gibbs, Metford or Rigby in actual use in the RoI, due to the almost total absence of suitable BP to drive them. Even nitro-propellant cartridge-firing long-range rifles of the classic kind, the Remington Rolling block, Winchester high and low wall, even the Sharps, are uncommon to say the least, as their very calibre - usually .45-70 or bigger - makes them restricted in the Republic. I know of maybe two Sharps rifles in the RoI, but I have no idea where or how they get shot in a country where such firearms are so uncommon as to be invisible.

I think that we may all be building snowmen in hell before we ever see such a turn of events in the Republic of Ireland.

Pity, eh?

tac


20 Jun 2014 21:14
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Put it on in winter and be happy snowmen aside from the insurance yeah decided at the last minute

Ray


21 Jun 2014 11:53
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
What you wonder reenactor use in Ireland to make cannon & muskets bark. Any licensed black-powder specialist can in theory supervise proceedings.
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http://www.discoverireland.ie/Whats-On/ ... ent/508593


21 Jun 2014 18:41
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
There I was thinking .303 was a tiny bit inadequate. I am guestimating tac but wouldn't Rigby heavy grainers orbit at height,800 or so inches over their target. Back Powder can only generate so much velocity :mrgreen: Metford Trophy, fired at 1000, 1100 and 1200 yards http://www.longrangerifles.co.uk/


24 Jun 2014 15:26
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
SMLE 303 wrote:
There I was thinking .303 was a tiny bit inadequate. I am guestimating tac but wouldn't Rigby heavy grainers orbit at height,800 or so inches over their target. Back Powder can only generate so much velocity :mrgreen: Metford Trophy, fired at 1000, 1100 and 1200 yards http://www.longrangerifles.co.uk/


Well, I used to shoot my Whitworth with the hexagonal Polisar 600gr bullets, paper-patched, to the same distances, loading 90, 95 and 100gr of FFg BP.

tac


24 Jun 2014 18:27
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
whistle dixie,gibbs percussion restricted in ireland :evil: :evil:
http://www.davide-pedersoli.com/rivista ... steyn.html
The Pedersoli Gibbs long range percussion rifle is a replica of the original 1865 target rifle made by the English gunsmith, George Gibbs. His rifles competed against other custom built target rifles of the era and in the right hands it proved capable of beating the costly custom built target rifles of that time. Today, the Pedersoli Gibbs rifle has proven to be the most successful rifle of it's type and has won most of the Gold medals in international and domestic (US) shooting matches for this type of rifle. The Pedersoli Gibbs rifle holds several NRA of America and international long range records out to 1000 yards as well as records for shorter ranges. The shooters who win with the Gibbs have offered tips and suggestions which will help you to develop accurate long range accuracy for your own Gibbs rifle and this instruction sheet is their way of welcoming new Gibbs shooters to the challenging sport of muzzle loading match competition. Because the Gibbs uses long heavy bullets of the type used in .45 cal. cartridge rifles it is capable of being used for big game hunting at ranges beyond that at which "round ball" rifles can be used.

Pedersoli High Wall rifle http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLcw-Q1F ... ew&index=3

Pedersoli Gibbs .451 http://youtu.be/GRPZeSHlHZ4
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25 Jun 2014 09:50
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Yup, J.K MILLNER, we expect would 'turn in his grave' on learning of his single-shot black powder, 32" barreled Rigby Muzzleloader, was made restricted in 2009, precisely one hundred and thirty three years, on from the Centenial Match of 1876 at Creedmoor, U.S.A. Let us hope paying due regard to the past, the new man or woman, put in charge of ballistics, has an idea or two of sporting firearms & ammunition. Granted Benny, when the recent firearms act was introduced, one or two issues came to dominate soon after its implementation. It appears a few of these matters never had their creases sucessfully ironed-out. Meanwhile, for the first time in the modern age of firearm ballistics the new act consigned, antique, historical & vintage caliber into restricted items [ EU, category B ] for a class of firearm in the opinion of the EU that carries an increase danger to public safety for the citizens of Europe. Restricted here in Ireland perhaps was one of those untended lapses of judgment, that is to say, unexplainable, impossible to fathom reasons why.

It is believed some of our shooting associations are to recieve an invite from a government minister shortly, where talks are expected to discuss the fall-out from the firearms act 2009..

An Interesting comment from the continental European shooting enthuiast to the size of that slow moving, low-power, 1870s era projectile!
Bisley 1000 yds long range shooting BPC back position ( x 5 approved positions)
http://youtu.be/nrCkYT0KpOc


25 Jun 2014 13:22
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Flattered as I am that Mr.Benny has posted some of my photographs above (the 3 below the flags), I would have preferred it if he had sought permission, or at least linked to the source.

A few years ago I put an overview of long range shooting in the UK (using m/l and b/l black powder rifles) on my blog. You may find it of interest.

With reference to Millner the following was published in the NRA(GB) Journal, March 1932.

Quote:
Colonel J.K. Millner
"News has just come to hand that Colonel J.K. Milner died on November 16th, 1931. He was a distinguished match rifle shot, and represented Ireland in the Elcho Match for thirty years and captained the team in 1919, although he did not shoot.

In 1874 Colonel Millner was a member of the Irish team which visited the United States. Ireland lost by three points, and Millner began his score at 900 yards with a bull's-eye on the wrong target. In 1877 he was a member of the British tem at Creedmoor which was beatne by 93 points. In the Olympic games of 1908 he won the individual match rifle competition at 1,000 yards.

A member of the Council from 1907 to 1914, Colonel Millner did much valuable work, and until a few years ago was a regular visitor to Bisley. In his later year he devoted much time to the breeding of sporting dogs and published a very valuable book on the subject. He was an inimitable mimic, and those who heard the corncrake or other unusual birds cry during the Bisley Meeting were listening to "Josh" Millner indulging in a little fun at their expense."

_________________
David Minshall
Research Press - www.researchpress.co.uk
Firearms, long range target shooting and associated history


26 Jun 2014 19:15
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
mr Benny bad links he thinks got in a bit of twist ;)
http://www.researchpress.co.uk/shooting ... /gibbs.htm


26 Jun 2014 22:12
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
Quote:
those who heard the corncrake or other unusual birds cry during the Bisley Meeting were listening to "Josh" Millner indulging in a little fun at their expense."

call of the corncrake runnin through the long grass brings back memories :roll:


13 Jul 2014 11:03
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Post Re: Famous Match Rifle Shots
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