MUSKETBALL #5 - French Charleville musketballs and other calibers - NC


Jr. Member
Apr 2, 2014
Wake Forest, NC
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Garrett Sea Hunter PI
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A faint signal turned out to be a 5th musketball located on a militia campsite in northern Wake County (Wake Forest/Rolesville area) of NC. Interestingly enough, when the musketball was being excavated from the hole, out popped a small triangular arrowhead made of rhyolite. That was a nice surprise too! Displayed are the 5 musketballs located to date including one chewed 1oz musketball, a fired American rifle ball weighing in at 12.1 grams, and 3 buck and ball shots. The smaller shots are consistent with a buck and ball shot from a French Charleville musket. Two of the buck shots weigh in at 3.1g and the remaining third buckshot weighs in at 2.2g. This diminished weight is due to being rodent chewed. A microscopic view and picture displays small rodent teeth marks on the buck shot. The largest of the musketballs, weighing in at 27.6g, displays teeth marks surrounding the musketball. It is thought to be have been human chewed with molar marks on the rear side. There is some debate as if this musketball was a true "BITE THE BULLET" musketball or if it was chewed by a wild boar or pig looking for acorns. In the future a forensic dentist may be consulted for further verification. The other pictures are in-situ as found.

The French .69 caliber Charleville muskets were imported in large quantities as early as 1777 and issued to Continental Infantry troops throughout the war.

American musket cartridges typically included a musketball with 3 additional .30 to .32" diameter lead buckshots, this is known as the famed "Buck and Ball" shot.

Thanks and enjoy, please check out "Rolesville Revolution" posts that include many of the other colonial artifacts from this site. Merry Christmas and hope 2015 will be good to all of us.


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Upvote 3


Hero Member
Aug 20, 2008
The US not only imported them, but built US guns based on the French patents. My family used to have a US made Charlieville musket that had been converted to percussion for the Civil War. It was a big, long gun with the ability to act as a formidable bayonet spear.


Jr. Member
Apr 2, 2014
Wake Forest, NC
Detector(s) used
Garrett Sea Hunter PI
White's Surfmaster II VLF
Tesoro Bandido II VLF
Tesoro Cibola VLF
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #3
Nice, thanks for the info, the more the better. Only if I could see the person carrying that through the wilderness.


Bronze Member
Aug 21, 2013
Eastern N.C.
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Teknetics T2 SE, Tesoro Sand Shark,Nautilus DMC 1, Garrett Grand Master Hunter,Garrett Master Hunter 5 , Whites Coinmaster 5000/D
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I know buck&ball was used by the Confederates at the battle of New Bern, as I have found several complete sets. All were .69 cal. with 3 pieces of buckshot. I think most people would pull out the big lead and not recheck the hole. Congrats man!

Carolina Tom

Gold Member
Apr 4, 2014
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XP Deus V3.2 9" & 11" Coils, AT Pro, ProPointer AT, Lesche 55, 75 & 80LT
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Very nice finds. Good to see treasure coming out of NC. GL&HH!

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