16056 - 42nd Royal Highland Regiment Grenadier Standing Tearing Cartridge, 1760-63
Paper cartridges have been in use for nearly as long as hand-held firearms, with some sources dating their use back to the 14th century. A paper cartridge combines a pre-measured amount of powder with the ball in a sealed unit. This eliminated the operation of measuring the powder from a horn and need of a cloth patch to hold the ball snuggly in the musket bore. A typical cartridge consisted of a paper tube, tied off to form two compartments. The first compartment contained the projectile and the second compartment contained the charge of powder. Paper cartridges were often coated in beeswax, lard, or tallow, which: provided some degree of water resistance; lubricated the bore; melted upon firing making the resulting fouling easier to remove; and were not as hazardous handle in combat.