Historic Battle of New Orleans rifle stolen 35 years ago returned to museum (VIDEO)
By Chris Eger
Just in time for the 203rd anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans, authorities returned a historic rifle that disappeared from a museum in the city decades ago.
The Louisiana State Police, in conjunction with the FBI’s Art Crime Team, was able to return the only known weapon documented and traced back to the 1815 Battle of New Orleans to the Confederate Memorial Hall Museum.
The .38-caliber flintlock long rifle was made by in 1810 by gunsmith John Jacob Sheetz, Shepherdstown, Virginia, during the “Golden Age” of the Kentucky-style rifle. Its claim to the city and American history is that it was owned and used by a New Orleans citizen, flour inspector William Ross, who was a member of Capt. Thomas Beal’s Company of Orleans Riflemen, an area militia unit composed of local merchants, that served under Gen. Andrew Jackson in the battle for the city during the War of 1812 against the British.
The .38-caliber flintlock longrifle was made by in 1810 by Shepherdstown, Virginia gunsmith John Jacob Sheetz during the “Golden Age” of the Kentucky-style rifle. (Photos: LSP)
As noted by the New Orleans Times-Picayune, the gun had been donated to the museum in 1884 by Ross’ grandson, Elijah Steele Ross, and