• Rifle Regiment arriving at Belle Point, 1817. Artwork by Michael Haynes

    Fort Smith

    National Historic Site AR,OK

There are park alerts in effect.
show Alerts »
  • Road Construction I-540

    Traveling West on I-40? To avoid construction delays, do not take Exit 7 (I-540 S). Stay on I-40 west and take Exit 1 Dora. Stay on Hwy 64D for 6 miles and follow signs to Fort Smith. After crossing over the river, turn right on 4th ST & right on Garland. More »

1854 Austrian Lorenz Rifle


1854 Austrian Lorenz Rifle

Caliber: .54

Barrel length: 37 ½"

The Lorenz rifle was imported from Austria by both Union and Confederate governments during the Civil War due to the shortage of weapons. This rifle was a muzzleloader that used a percussion cap for ignition. The bullets fired by this rifle were inferior to the mine ball and the barrels were inconsistent in quality making these poorly performing weapons. Private Henry Strong of the 12th Kansas Infantry who latter was stationed at Fort Smith disliked the Lorenz due to the poor and inconsistent quality of the weapon. Strong claimed he was glad when they replaced his Austrian rifle with a British Enfield.

Back to Weapons of Fort Smith

Did You Know?

Park staff and volunteers demonstrating using lindstock and slowmatch to ignite the cannon's primer

The soldiers who came to Fort Smith in 1817 were still using some 18th century technology and drill. The cannon was discharged using a lindstock and slowmatch to ignite the primer, which originally was loose powder or a turkey quill filled with powder.