How often have you heard the phrase, “The gun that won the West!” or perhaps, “The gun that won WWII” in reference to the Winchester lever actions (in the West) or the Garand for WWII? There are other catch phrases like, the “great equalizer” or, “God made men, Samuel Colt made them equal”.
Ever since I learned of the Gun maker Jacob Dickert, I became enamored with his rifles and the role they played in American history. There should easily be a phrase, “Dickert Rifles, the guns that changed the course of human events”. Is that far fetched? No I think not.
Perhaps the humble German immigrant, devout Moravian, was so very humble and quiet that he shied away from any historical attention or association with great accomplishments where his works were pivotal in their role. The hardworking, Lancaster gunsmith, unbeknownst to him would leave an everlasting impression on this continent and thus the world.
List of muskets furnished by local gunsmiths to the Lancaster County Committee of Observation in 1776 at the beginning of the American Revolution. Lancaster County Papers, Volume 1, Historical Society of Pennsylvania. (note: Dickert supplied 34 rifles)
Jacob Dickert Rifles were ordered several times, before and during the course of the American Revolution. He produced rifles from the time of the French and Indian War, the Revolution, the early years of the new nation, and the War of 1812.
The original Dickert rifle in the Alamo shrine.
Dickert Rifles are credited as the rifles carried by the men who turned the tide in the Revolution at the battle of Kings Mtn, where British Major Ferguson was killed and his troops defeated. A Dickert rifle is the only surviving rifle known to have been at the Alamo, and Dickert rifles are recorded to have been given to early makers of Fur Trade era rifles to, “copy” or make in a more affordable fashion.
This is why I chose to have myself a Dickert. The greatest rifle ever to grace God’s green earth.
The Dickert rifle repelled the French, freed a people from British tyranny, defended a young nation from foreign insult, expanded westward with free trappers, and fought Santa Ana in Texas. There is no tool of liberty, no fashioned steel, carved marble, written scroll that embodies the tenacity and vigor or American Liberty and our willingness to kill for freedom like the Dickert Rifle.