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A technical outline of the history of the sniper rifle, from its introduction in warfare during the Napoleonic wars, through the US Civil War to its current apogee as the most frequently used combat rifle in Iraq and Afghanistan. This book details the development of ammunition, different weapons types including single shot, magazine loading and semi-automatic, as well as the introduction and use of optical sights. Martin Pegler, a leading expert on the history of sniping and former Senior Curator of Firearms at the Royal Armouries Leeds, also details the current advances in technology, such as laser range-finding sights and night vision devices. Using first-hand accounts, the book brings the dangerous world of the sniper to life revealing their training and concealment techniques as well as their mastering of their weapon of choice.
Martin Pegler has a BA Hons in Medieval and Modern History and an MA in Museum Studies, both from University College, London, and was for many years the Senior Curator of Firearms at the Royal Armouries Museum, Leeds. He now lives in the Somme, France, where he and his wife run a small bed and breakfast, which is situated on top of the old German front line! Martin has established The Somme Historical Centre (www.martinpegler.com), where visitors can see the technology used in the 1914-18 trench warfare. Martin enjoys shooting historic firearms, and has participated in many shooting competitions. He is currently an author and firearms consultant and he also lectures at local WWI museums. In his spare time Martin runs motorcycle tours of the battlefield. He is the author of a number of books including The Military Sniper Since 1914 (Osprey, 2001), Firearms in the American West 1700-1900 (The Crowood Press, 2002), and the highly acclaimed Out of Nowhere: A History of the Military Sniper (Osprey, 2004), and he has also contributed to a number of magazines. In the 1980s he had the privilege of interviewing many World War I veterans about their wartime experiences, and the recordings are now part of the sound archives of the Imperial War Museum, London. Martin is the series editor for Osprey's Weapon series.