M1863 BRIDESBURG RIFLE-MUSKET -- NEEDHAM CONVERSION

$950.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: G3696

This is a Model 1863 Bridesburg Contract rifle-musket with a Needham conversion system in very good original condition. Before its alteration from .58 caliber cap and ball to a breechloading centerfire system in 1869, this longarm was a product of the Philadelphia firm of Alfred Jenks & Son, owners and operators of the Bridesburg Machine Works in Pennsylvania.

This Needham-altered, single-shot longarm is one of an unknown quantity that were modified and retains a pleasing appearance.  Barrel is clean and has a smooth surface with a mottled plum patina. In complete condition, this musket retains its original stock, “S”-shaped beveled hammer, straight-shank ramrod, all barrel bands, and sling swivels. Mechanics are strong and crisp. Bore is bright with good rifling. Frame screws are not buggered. Black walnut stock is in excellent condition overall with just a few dings from age and storage. No cartouches visible.

Face of the lockplate stamped with a strong “1863” stamp behind the modified hammer. Upper right area of the lockplate in front of the hammer was cut to accommodate the unique Needham swing-out breech for the sideloading receiver. The spread-winged eagle and “BRIDESBURG” are still visible. Receiver area retains much of its factory bluing. Original tulip-head, steel ramrod is complete with threaded end. Buttplate tang stamped with a light “US”.

Needham conversion long arms have an interesting history involving an Irish-American secret society. Immediately after the Civil War, the Fenian Brotherhood plotted to invade Canada to pressure England to grant independence to Ireland.

A very nice example of post-war conversion with interesting footnote in history.  [jet]

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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