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Gunsmoke in the Wolf River valley!

TeachTeach Senior MemberPosts: 18,428 Senior Member
It's time for another Alvin York Memorial Muzzleloader Shoot! This Saturday, to be exact. Son Doug and I are leaving tomorrow to drive to Pall Mall Tennessee and help set up the range. Anybody who happens to be in the East Tennessee/Kentucky/North Carolina/Virginia area is cordially invited to come by and watch us win our usual 2 pounds of hamburger!

The 40 best "shot strings" out of 200+ shooters win steaks, hams, pork tenderloins, etc., and everybody else gets 2 lbs. of pretty good ground chuck. The competition is limited to iron-sighted traditional muzzleloaders, flint or percussion ignition, 10 targets at 60 yards, with the total distances from center measured to add up to a "string". The traditional way a shooter's performance was measured back when York used to sponsor these events was to stretch a string from the center of the target to the bullet hole and tie a knot in the string. Next shot, tie another knot- - - - -etc. The shortest string after all the shots were taken wins!

The prize was a cow, pig, or other meat animal, purchased by the shooters' entry fees. 1st. Place got a front quarter, 2nd. place got the other front quarter,3rd. and 4th. got hind quarters, 5th. got the hide and tallow, and the 6th. place shooter got to dig the lead out of the backstop to melt down for more bullet casting. If a shooter won every match, he just might take the animal home on the hoof!

Fun stuff!


  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    Now that sounds like fun, Ifen weed a had somthin like that round here, I'd drag out one o my smoke poles and play!
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 8,320 Senior Member
    Going to the Alvin York shoot with you and Doug is at the top of my bucket list Jerry. One of these years I am going to turn up on your doorstep a couple of days before it and surprise you!

    Hope the shooting deities smile down on you both. I look forward to seeing lots of pics.
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • North ForestNorth Forest Member Posts: 358 Member
    Strange coincidence, I was just watching the "Sergeant York" film with Gary Cooper for the first time last night.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    Here's a few pics from previous shoots:

    Grandkids with Andy York, Alvin's son. He's an honorary Tennessee state park ranger, since the York farm is now a state park.


    Shooting Woodsrunner's flintlock chunk gun "Old T-Bone"

    Scoring targets- - - -dial calipers instead of a string!

    The "trophies"

    The firing line- - - -60 yards prone positon

    Fun for all!
  • gunrunner428gunrunner428 Senior Member Posts: 1,018 Senior Member

    Bucket list proposition right here, Teach.

    Iron sights only, I assume adjustable are OK?
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Y'all put the hamburger close enough to them Smoke Poles and you can cook it right on the firing line :guns::guns:

    Do percussion BP rifle shooters have any edge over Flintlock or vice versa?
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    The sights are "adjustable" once. We file the front sight for elevation, and drift the rear for windage, then once we're on paper the load is tuned to shoot the most consistent group. Powder gets weighed to 1/10 grqin accuracy and placed in glass vials, and the balls are weight-matched to +/- 1/2 grain or so. After some sighter shots, the targets get positioned where there's the best chance of a center hit. Most chunk guns are set up to shoot slightly low/right so the aiming point doesn't get blown away after a few shots. There are 10 relays, with one shot at each target. Final score is determined by adding up the distance from center for each target. If I shoot 10 targets at 1/2" from center each, that would be a 5" shot string. Most of the successful shooters are keeping their shots less than 1/4" from center- - - -quite an accomplishment with round balls and no optics!

    Dan, in the 20-something year history of the modern York shoot, a flinter has never won all the marbles. Last year was close- - - -flint took second place.
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 8,387 Senior Member
    I was on a motor cycle trip, a few years back, and I preferred to stay off the interstates so I could see the country better. Wound up in Pall Mall and remembered it was the home town of Alvin York so I stopped for a few hours and paid my respects. Beautiful area!!
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,457 Senior Member
    Went to the shoot several years ago to watch Jerry and Rich shoot. That is a sight to see all those muzzleloaders fire off a shot string! Gets a bit smokey on the firing line. And winning hamburger is no shame; some of those shooters are world class shooters that burn a LOT of powder at matches all over the U.S. And the difference in the shot strings when i was there was REALLY close!

    Lots of people dressed up in period clothes, too. And that includes the shooters.

    And if watching gives you the urge to have a rifle, there are a few vendors there that can supply the bits and pieces to make a rifle. So bring some cash! Just walking up and down the line and taking a look at all the rifles is worth the trip.
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