This Day in History: 1691-03-19

At Portsmouth, where they await transportation to Europe to fight for William of Orange in the Nine Years War, Castleton’s Regiment ( later 30th Foot and then 1st East Lancashires) exchange their old matchlocks for modern firelocks and bayonets. This upgrade increases their rate of fire fourfold, from one round every two minutes to two per minute, and, by replacing the smouldering match with a flint, enables them for the first time to deliver a unified volley.