This thoroughly documented, authoritative, and highly readable book not only details the weapons used during the settlement and westward expansion of America but also describes their use by fur traders, trappers, soldiers, and Native Americans. The result is a lively historical examination of the momentous events that were strongly influenced by the gun trade. The text is augmented and enriched throughout with clearly identified illustrations of everything from antique muskets, flintlocks, repeating rifles, and howitzers to bullet molds, powder horns, and other firearm accessories. “An outstanding contribution to firearms literature. It sets its own standard.” — The New York Times. “For collectors, museum curators, archaeologist-historians, this book is — in its field — an essential contribution.” — Kirkus. “A Glossary of Gun Terms, ample footnotes most skillfully arranged, and illustrations … complement the text which achieves the miracle of scholarship without tedium.” — San Francisco Chronicle.