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Any of several rifles that were standard infantry weapons of the U.S. Army from 1873 to 1936, all taking their name from the Springfield Armory. The most famous began as the Model 1903 Springfield, an adaptation of the German Mauser. After modifications to accommodate Model 1906 ammunition, it entered history as the Springfield .30-06, one of the most reliable and accurate military firearms ever. The principal U.S. infantry weapon until 1936, it was replaced by the Garand (M1) rifle of World War II, also designed at the Springfield Armory. When the Springfield .30-06 was retired, it was widely modified into a sporting rifle that is still prized for its accuracy. See also M16 rifle.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Springfield rifle, visit Britannica.com.