First machine gun
Who
Unknown
What
first
Where
USA ()
When
1862

In 1862, Richard Gatling (USA) produced the first workable, hand-cranked, multiple barrel machine gun. Loose cartridges were fed under gravity into the open breach from a top-mounted hopper. It was this feature rather than the multi rotating barrels that permitted unskilled operators to achieve high rates of fire. It was first used in warfare during the American Civil War 1861-1865. Although capable of continuous fire, it was not a true automatic weapon, as it required human power to turn it.