ALTERED U.S. M1841 WHITNEY PERCUSSION COLT CONTRACT RIFLE

$4,750.00
Originally $5,200.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 169-453

Presented is a contract rifle specimen of one of those “Good and Serviceable Arms” produced by the Eli Whitney company of New Haven, Connecticut, commonly known as the “Mississippi Rifle.” This arm, one of just 5,000 pieces, was altered by the Colt factory in Hartford during late 1861. The alteration included adding the Colt-style folding leaf rear sight, reboring the barrel to .58 caliber, and adding the Colt bayonet ring lug at the muzzle.

This shoulder arm features a single-shot, percussion-rifled barrel with a full stock in wonderful condition. Overall length of the weapon is 49” while the round, factory-browned barrel itself measures 33” in length. Weapon exhibits a small “US” stamped in the butt plate, a lockplate that is marked with small, but clear stamped letters of “E. WHITNEY” over “U.S.” in front of the hammer. On the lockplate in rear of the hammer are the two-line markings “N. HAVEN” over “1854”. Barrel left facet is stamped “STEEL” and has inspector marks “JH” on the left and “B” on the right facet. Original M1841 rifles were not fitted for any bayonet the iron lug muzzle ring was a later modification. Visible on the barrel tang are the proof marks of “US / JCB / V P.” Also seen on the tang is the thin barrel date of “1854.

Each of these M1841 longarms had black walnut stocks fitted with brass furniture and a brass patchbox. Originally oil finished, the stock surface exhibits pleasing patina, smooth and hard. Stock bears just normal dings and dents from use and storage. A single, light, oval cartouche visible on stock flat opposite the hammer. Other inspector marks visible on the barrel breech, side plate, and triggerguard. Lock plate and hammer have no case colors remaining. Band springs dark with no bluing. Barrel was browned and exhibits a very light peppery look along the stock from scattered fine rust pitting overall. Very good original brown finish remains on the piece. Mechanics, strong and crisp. Seven groove rifling is strong and sharp with slight grime. Weapon retains its original steel ramrod with its tapered brass head tip. Whitney’s well-made Model 1841 percussion rifle performed as a “Good and Serviceable Arm” for the U.S. military. Here is a seldom-seen, Colt-altered percussion rifle in excellent plus condition overall.

DISCLAIMER: All firearms are sold as collector's items only - we do not accept responsibility as to the shooting safety or reliability of any antique firearm. All firearms are described as accurately as possible, given the restraints of a catalog listing length. We want satisfied customers & often "under" describe the weapons. Any city or state regulations regarding owning antique firearms are the responsibility of the purchaser. All firearms are "mechanically perfect" unless noted, but again, are NOT warranted as safe to fire!

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