Benjamin Franklin Joslyn was known as one of the most interesting gun designers during the U.S. Civil War, but he was known more for his constant clashes with sub-contractors and the Federal Government than he was for the quality of his arms. His disputes with the government lasted long after the Civil War had ended.
In 1855, Joslyn designed a breech-loading carbine. After successful tests, the U.S. Army ordered 50 of these rifles in 1857 in .54 caliber. The Army quickly lost interest in the rifle, but in 1858 the U.S. Navy ordered 500 of these in .58 caliber. Production problems resulted in only 150 to 200 of these rifles being delivered in 1861.
In 1861, Joslyn designed a modified version using a metal rimfire cartridge. The Federal Ordnance Department ordered 860 of these carbines, which were delivered in 1862. Most went to units from Ohio. In 1862, Joslyn received an order for 20,000 carbines. Delivery on these weapons started in 1863, but by the time the Civil War came to an end only about half of these had been delivered.
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