Alexander John Forsyth LLD
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Alexander John Forsyth LLD (1768 - 1843)

Rev. Alexander John (Alexander John) Forsyth LLD
Born in The Manse, Belhelvie, Aberdeenshire, Scotlandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Died at age 74 in The Manse, Belhelvie, Aberdeenshire, Scotlandmap
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Profile last modified | Created 31 Mar 2009
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Notables Project
Alexander John Forsyth LLD is Notable.

Baptised by his uncle by marriage, Rev Alexander Johnson.

The Reverend Alexander John Forsyth, from Aberdeenshire, Scotland, was a pioneer in the development of modern firearms and his work led to the invention of the percussion lock in 1806, which replaced the flint lock in the eighteenth century. It proved to be swift but equally important waterproof. This greatly improved firing mechanism rendered guns less vulnerable to dampness as so making them more reliable. The percussion cap led to the the modern bullet where the primer is included in the cartridge. Rev. Forsyth did receive an English pension for his invention, but only after a long delay. Most importantly he declined an offer from France of £20,000 to take his invention there. (Approx. £1,000,000 at today's value).

After much reluctance by Wellington to adopt the new technology, a test in 1834 against flint muskets, found the percussion muskets to be superior in all weathers, fewer miss-fires, more accurate and more rapid.


LDS baptism record
Alexander John Forsyth - a biography by Major-General Sir Alexander John Forsyth Reid, Aberdeen: The University Press, 1909

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Categories: Presbyterian Ministers | Gunsmiths | Notables