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Over 50 different long arms were government issued or privately purchased and used during the American Civil War. Weapons from Austria, England, France, and Germany as well as those manufactured in the Americas all found a place the the hands of both armies. Most were rifles, their barrels cored producing lands and grooves - channels cut into the inside of the barrel. These channels helped stabilize the flight of the ball from the barrel and through the air promoting greater accuracy than the common smoothbore musket. With the invention of the Minié ball, which was not a ball at all but rather conical bullet, the lands and grooves imparted even more of a stabilizing spin.