VERY NICE WINCHESTER LEE MODEL 1895 STRAIGHT-PULL RIFLE BAYONET AND SCABBARD POSSIBLY EARLY ISSUE WITH NAVY INSPECTOR’S MARK

$675.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 1037-370

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The Winchester-Lee 1895 Straight-pull rifle was the primary issue long arm of both the US Navy and Marine Corps from 1895 to 1900 and thus at the forefront of American expansion to a global power. An initial contract for 10,000 rifles for the navy in 1898 was followed by another for 5,000 in 1899. Of the first contract, some 1,800 were marked and issued to the Marines. (It was a Marine battalion armed with these that first landed and came under fire in Cuba and a group of them was found aboard the USS Maine when the ship was salvaged.) They also saw service in the Philippines, China, and other “little wars” of the era in the hands of navy landing parties, etc. The bayonet led the way in its reduced length. The 8 5/16 inch blade was the shortest in US service until the introduction of the M1 bayonet. Hardin, p. 154, calls it, “short, lightweight, and effective.”

This is example rates very good to excellent. The wood grips are excellent, have nice color and fit the hilt perfectly. The pommel and guard are smooth metal and in the bright, with some graying to the bottom edge of the tang. The blade is very good with smooth metal, light silver gray in color, with good edge and point, with just small gray spots overall and slight freckling at the tip. The scabbard is excellent, with slight wrinkling to the black leather body and nice blue to the mounts. The swivel belt loop is present and very nice, showing brown in tone and the style sewn most of the way up, leaving a narrow loop at top for use with a wire belt hook.

This bayonet is a known variant with no Remington marking, but with a T in a triangle mark on the ricasso, a stamp that also shows up on some bayonet scabbards. The mark is the U.S. Navy inspector’s stamp of Ensign Nathan C. Twining and collectors theorize that this stamp appears on the earliest delivered batches of the bayonets, those made before Remington had fully geared up and began stamping them with the company name lengthwise in the fuller. The pattern of scabbard on this one is said by Hardin to be the second type, but that is only an assumption on his part and Janzen has them in the opposite order.   [sr]

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