The National Rifle Association, barely two years old, was ill-prepared when in November 1873 the ‘New York Herald’ published a challenge to the riflemen of America from the riflemen of Ireland. Their Creedmoor rifle range on Long Island had opened in Spring that year, and there was growing sporting interest in rifle shooting notably from the Amateur Rifle Club of New York City. In Great Britain their National Rifle Association had been established for over a decade and riflemen regularly competed out to 1,000 yards. The premier ‘home countries’ long range rifle match between England, Ireland and Scotland, the Elcho Shield, was won for the first time by Ireland in 1873. Buoyed by their success Ireland wanted further laurels, and it was the Amateur Rifle Club that accepted their challenge on behalf of the riflemen of America. The subsequent match at Creedmoor in 1874 was the first in a series of international competitions fired at 800, 900 and 1,000 yards that took place during the remainder of the 1870s. It is the forerunner of the Palma Trophy match still held today.