Benjamin Tyler Henry: The Forgotten History of the Inventor of the Legendary Henry Rifle

by Sam Jacobs
The Daily Bell

While he doesn’t have the same household recognition as Sam Colt or Smith & Wesson, Benjamin Tyler Henry is a towering figure in the world of ammunition and firearms – and those in the know, know. Henry invented the eponymous Henry rifle, which was the world’s first repeating revolver that actually worked.

Henry was born in Claremont, New Hampshire in 1821, to one of the most prominent families in the area. His grandfather, Colonel Benjamin Tyler, had been the town’s first millwright, who founded several successful mills in the town and invented the wry-fly water wheel. One of his cousins, James Tyler, likewise continued in the innovative spirit of their shared grandfather by perfecting this water-wheel design, creating much of the prosperity that visited the town during the early years of the Industrial Revolution, but allowing paper and textile mills to spring up throughout the town using the power of this perfected design.

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