Mr. Jefferson’s Assault Rifle

High-capacity magazine? Check.

Capable of firing 22 aimed shots in a minute? Check.

A military weapon? Check.

Manufactured during the American Revolutionary War? Check.

The Girandoni was 22-shot, magazine-fed, nearly silent .46 caliber repeating rifle issued to elite Austrian troops from 1780-1815. Thomas Jefferson purchased two of these rifles, which he sent west with Lewis and Clark.

Remember it the next time some know-it-all—perhaps someone who used to have a cable show before he was fired for low ratings—says that the Founding Fathers only knew of muskets.

Hat tip to Bob Owens over at Bearing Arms. Bob’s got a great video on his article. Head on over to to check it out. Well worth your time in my opinion.

Name Game

Personal Defense Weapons
Assault Weapons

All three refer to the same thing. The name and connotation varies based on who has the firearm.

The Department of Homeland Security just put in a requisition for 7,000 PDW (Personal Defense Weapons) — and these would actually more accurately fit in to the Assault Weapons category because they are select fire. Meaning they can be in safe, single fire, and 3 round burst. Oh, and they are specifically asking for magazines with a 30 round capacity.

What’s good for them is bad for you.