April 28 2009 marks 118 years of the Mosin Nagant battle rifle.
The first rifle I ever bought was M44 mosin-nagant
The Mosin-Nagant (Russian: Винтовка Мосина, ISO 9: Vintovka Mosina) is a bolt-action, internal magazine fed, military rifle that was used by the armed forces of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union and various other nations, most of them from Eastern bloc. Also known as the Three-Line Rifle (Трёхлинейная винтовка, ISO 9: Trëhlinejnaâ vintovka), it was the first to use the 7.62x54mmR cartridge.
As a front-line rifle, the Mosin-Nagant served in various forms from 1891 until the 1960s in many Eastern European nations, when the sniper rifle variant was replaced by the SVD (Снайперская винтовка Драгунова, ISO 9: Snajperskaâ vintovka Dragunova). The Mosin-Nagant is still used in many conflicts due to its ruggedness and the vast number produced.
 Initial design and service
During the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, Russian troops armed with mostly Berdan single-shot rifles engaged Turks with Winchester repeating rifles resulting in alarmingly disproportionate casualties. This emphasized to commanders a need to modernize the Imperial army. The Russian Main Artillery Administration undertook the task of producing a magazine-fed, multi-round weapon in 1882. After failing to adequately modify the Berdan system to meet the requirements, a "Special Commission for the testing of Magazine[-fed] Rifles" was formed to test new designs.
Sergei Ivanovich Mosin, a captain in the Imperial army, submitted his "3-line" calibre (.30 cal, 7.62 mm) rifle in 1889 alongside a 3.5-line design by Léon Nagant (a Belgian). When trials concluded in 1891, all units which tested the rifles indicated a preference for Nagant's design and the Commission voted 14 to 10 to approve it. However, more influential officers pushed for the domestic design, resulting in a compromise: Mosin's rifle was used with a Nagant-designed feed mechanism. Thus, the 3-line rifle, Model 1891 (its official designation at the time) was adopted.
Production of the Model 1891 began in 1892 at the ordnance factories of Tula Arsenal, Izhevsk Arsenal, and Sestroryetsk Arsenal. Due to the limited capacities of these facilities and the newly formed Franco-Russian Alliance, an order for 500,000 rifles was placed with the more capable French arms factory, Manufacture Nationale d'Armes de Châtellerault.
By the time of the Russo-Japanese War in 1904, approximately 3.8 million rifles had been delivered to the Russian army. Initial reactions by units equipped with the rifle were mixed, but any adverse reports were likely due to poor maintenance by undertrained infantrymen more familiar with Berdans.
Between the adoption of the final design in 1891 and the year 1910, several variants and modifications to the existing rifles were made.