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Burnside, A.E.

Name Street Town State From To
Burnside, Ambrose Everett   Providence Rhode Island 1850s 1860s

Patent Date Remarks
14,491 March 25, 1856 Breech-Loading Fire-Arms
Patent drawing
Specification 2nd page
RE1,428 July 7, 1863 Improvement in Metallic Cartridges for Breech-Loading Fire-Arms
Patent drawing
Specification 2nd page

Contract for

Born on May 23, 1824, died on September 13, 1881.

Gradueted from West Point in 1847. With permission of the Secretary of War he developed the Burnside Carbine. He left the Army in 1853 but maintained a position in the state milita.

In 1853 the Army allowed the Springfield Armory to fabricate an example of Burnsides rifle. Partnership with William W. Bishop and George P. Foster in late 1853. At Christmas Eve the buildings of that new company were destroyed by fire.

Already in January 1854 he established the Burnside & Bishop company on Summer Street, Bristol. That factory was runned by Foster. They spent the year to refine his breech loader and manufactured some muzzleloader and spare part for the trade.

Interesting to know that he got his first patent from the British Government. Patent number 2581 issued November 15, 1855 in the name of G.T. Bousfield. Bousfield was Burnside's arent in London. The drawings matches that of the U.S. patent numnrt 14,491.

In 1855 they invited the experienced entrepreneur, Charles W. Jackson, Providence to join their company. The name of the former company was changes to Bristol Firearms Co.

The first Burnside's were manufactured in 1856 in .50 caliber. Trial of his guns at the Washington Arsenal in 1856 and first order of 200 guns for field trials.

Burnside ran for one of the Congressional seats in Rhode Island in 1858 but failed. The costs of that compaign as well as the destruction of his factory by fire let to his financial ruin. He was forced to assign his patens to others. He now left the gun business and started to work for the Illinois Central Railroad where he became friendly with George B. McClellan.

During the Civil War Burnside started as a brigadier general, his troups were engaged in the first Bull Run, North Carolina, Antietam, Fredericksburg, east Tennessee ...

After the Civil War Burnside was employed in numerous railroad and industrial companies, served as Governor of Rhode Island from May 29, 1866 to May 25, 1869.

Mediated between the French and the Germand in the French-Prussian War 1870-1871 when visited Europe in 1870.

He became the first president of the National Rifle Association (NRA) in 1871.

U.S. Senator from Rhode Island from 1875 to 1881.

See Bristol Firearms Co. and Burnside Rifle Co. and Foster, George Pratt. Foster had leading part in the developement of the Burneside's.