Fredericksburg Gun Manufactory N-7 The Fredericksburg Gun Manufactory was established by an ordinance passed by Virginia's third revolutionary convention on 17 July 1775. Built on this site soon thereafter by Fielding Lewis and Charles Dick, it was the first such factory in America. Its workers repaired and manufactured small arms for the regiments of numerous Virginia counties during the Revolutionary War. The factory's principal product was modeled after the British Brown Bess musket, the standard infantry arm of the day. Only a handful of the Fredericksburg muskets survive. In 1783 the factory closed and the General Assembly transferred the land and buildings to the trustees of the Fredericksburg Academy. The property was sold to a merchant in 1801 and later subdivided.