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Item Code: 526-43
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This weapon was carried in the Civil War by Dem Youngers of Company C, 151st New York Infantry and bears a silver plaque on the stock attesting to that fact.
This rare Sharps is a New Model 1859 with a full stock. The scarce 36.00 inch barrel is .52 with an iron blade sight mounted on top and a lug mounted under the muzzle for the saber bayonet. The surface of the barrel has a plumb brown patina that is worn near the mid-point where the hand would normally grasp the weapon. Rear sight is single flip-up leaf with sliding peep. Barrel is marked forward of the rear sight “SHARPS RIFLE / MANUFG CO. / HARTFORD, CONN.” The base of the rear sight is marked “R. S. LAWRENCE / PATENTED / FEB. 15TH 1859.” Behind the sight base is “NEW MODEL 1859.” All markings are readable. Bore is clean and dark with good rifling. Some minor pitting about a third of the way down toward the breech. Serial #37402 found on the barrel tang clearly places it in the very earliest of that scarce model, the production of which was limited
Receiver and lock match the barrel in color. Hammer is a little lighter. Action works well as does breech. Both receiver and lock surfaces have some scattered pinprick pitting. Left side of receiver is marked “C. SHARPS PAT. / SEPT. 12TH 1848.” Right side of the receiver is marked “R. S. LAWRENCE PAT. / APRIL 12TH 1859.” Lock is marked “C. SHARPS PAT. / OCT 5TH 1852.”
Triggerguard, patchbox, buttplate and barrel bands surfaces match the rest of the iron on the weapon in color and wear patterns. Patchbox opens and is empty.
Light brown wood stock has inlaid silver diamonds between the barrel bands on each side. The diamond near the front band on the left side is missing. Stock is in nice condition over all with just minor dents and wear consistent with age and use. No inspector’s cartouche is visible. Left side of butt has a wonderful silver escutcheon with 19th Century style decoration and hand engraving that reads “DEM YOUNGERS / 1ST BRIG. SHRPSHOOTERS / 3RD DIV 6TH CORPS.”
Dem Youngers was born Dominic Dem Youngers in Germany on August 19, 1844. Some family histories give his birth place as Hachy, Luxembourg, Belgium. He and his family came to the United States sometime before 1849.
Dem was 18 years old when he enlisted in Company C, 151st New York Infantry at Batavia on September 2, 1862 as a Private. At the time of his enlistment he was described as being employed as a farmer. He stood 5’ 6” tall with blue eyes, brown hair and a dark complexion.
The 151st was assigned to the Middle Departments 8th Corps where it served quietly until July 10, 1863 when it was assigned to the 3rd Corps of the Army of the Potomac. Private Youngers was present throughout the regiment’s time in the Middle Department.
The 151st served with the 3rd Corps through Bristoe Station and Mine Run before being transferred to the 1st Brigade, 3rd Division 6th Corps with which it saw action at Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Hanover Court House, Totopotomy Creek, Cold Harbor, Monocacy, Opequan, Winchester, Cedar Creek, Petersburg and Sailor’s Creek. Private Youngers was present for all these engagements despite suffering illness. In Youngers’ pension file a comrade speaks of Dem being ill and mentions that at “Petersburg I think he went with the Brigade Sharpshooters.”
Dem Youngers was mustered out on June 26, 1865. Dem returned to New York where he married on November 27, 1867 but sadly he died on August 11, 1872 of a stomach ailment he contracted in the army. He was buried in Saint Cecilia’s Cemetery, Sheldon, New York.
A great museum quality item with fantastic provenance.
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