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"Why Should Soldiers Know How to Shoot? Making Marksmanship in the Early Twentieth Century," lecture by Bruce Hevly
Marksmanship would seem to be a basic skill for a soldier. But the history of rifle marksmanship from the 1870s until the 1920s suggests otherwise: the militarization of target shooting took place in the context of profound changes in the relationships among industry, the federal government and state militias. As a product of these changes, civilian marksmanship programs made accurate shooting a hallmark of citizenship, in the last vestige of the tradition of the common militia.