Henry Eichholtz Leman was born in Lancaster in 1812, son of a Huguenot farmer-cum Revolutionary War private-cum brewmaster. A preternatural metalsmith, Henry established a gunworks in the rear of his dad’s Lancaster brewery after a brief apprenticeship with a prominent Philadelphia gunmaker. He supplied arms to the U.S. Government from 1837 to 1860, but turned down a lucrative Union contract in 1861 to focus on the Western market, where his guns were wildly popular among the manifestly destined set. If you see a herd of ghost buffalo stampeding down Duke Street, he’s probably the reason why. His rifles were favored by settlers who decimated the country’s bison population in the 1870s and 1880s. These
genocidal marauders happy customers would often send hides back to his Lancaster factory, but is unknown whether Henry himself ever saw a Great Plains buffalo alive. He died in Lancaster in 1887.
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