It is common historical fact that most American laws of 1700’s were derived from British Common law and that much the “thinking” of America’s forefathers and lawmakers at that time, is still applicable today.
As a prime example, The State of Texas recently reverted back to basically the same laws regarding firearms as was prevalent in the 18th and 19th century, i.e., What was normal then is now referred to as “open carry.”
The significance of the early “Out West” was that the Sheriff would carry, e.g., a Colt pistol and a repeating rifle and farmer McDonald of Old McDonald had a farm fame carried the same weapons generally for protection and hunting for food. According to common historical accounts, It is noted that cattle rustlers carried identical weapons for protecting what they did best to Farmer McDonald’s freedom and property.
In a cursory historical view of George Armstrong Custer and the Little Big Horn, Native-American Indians were skilled archers, but even they adopted the same pistol and repeating rifle as everyone else had for the extra leverage.
If you loved the “Spaghetti Westerns” with Clint Eastwood; In the movie “Hang ’em High.” it was an historical fact that most judicial districts, including that of the hanging Judge Roy Bean were so vast and law enforcement so scarce that it was a “no brainer” that most ordinary folks needed to protect their freedom, property and families as it may be weeks or months before a lawman would pass through their territory..
Winding the clock even further back:
Soldiers of the Colonial Militia
By Kevin Stanley
“Many soldiers of the British regular army believed the colonial militia consisted of low-quality soldiers who came from the dregs of society. Most were sure the militia would make little difference in the outcome of the war. In reality, the soldiers of the colonial militia came from all walks of life, endured many hardships, and contributed greatly to the war effort. All of this was done according to strict terms set by the colonials.[ Let there be no doubt that this is true today].
The ranks of the colonial militia were usually filled by average citizens. They came from all walks of life and different ethnic groups. Many of them were native-born colonists, British immigrants, as well as free blacks. However, a majority of the men were Scotch-Irish, as seen in the Pennsylvania regiments (Stephenson-205). The average soldier of the militia served alongside Rangers, Highlanders, Iroquois Indians, and British regulars (Dillard-50).
Much of the British regular army was recruited from the lowest social classes. The enlisted were often petty criminals, beggars, common laborers or subsistence farmers (Anderson-499). Because the British officer’s own troops often consisted of these types, they were more than willing to believe the same about the colonial soldier. British officers showed contempt for both the colonial enlisted soldiers and colonial officers alike (Anderson-50).
In understanding the origin of pertinent American laws, the why and wherefore is to take a sentimental historical journey.
Finally, it is an historical fact that the Militia were personally armed in like manner to the regular soldiers.
P.S. ( This is my story and I’m stickin with it!)
This was originally posted on Google plus (by a veteran). I found the information interesting.