E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
means literally to spïn out; to put thread in [a needle], as enfiler une aiguille; to string beads by putting them on a thread, as enfiler des perles. Soldiers being compared to thread, we get the following metaphors: to go through a place as thread through a needleto string artillery by placing it in a line and directing it against an enemy; hence, to scour or rake with shot.