Most rifles brought to this country by the early settlers were German made Jaegers.  These heavy, short-barreled guns shot a .70 caliber or larger bullet.  The birth of the American made long rifle changed the look of the rifle due to the geography and circumstances in America.  An accurate rifle with a longer range was needed.

The rifle has spiral grooves cut in a long barrel to start the round ball spinning unlike the smoothbore barrel of a fowler.  This rifling and length of the barrel create a more accurate weapon up to a range of 300 yards.