STARR PERCUSSION CARBINE NAMED TO 13TH ILLINOIS CAVALRY TROOPER WILLIAM J. MORROW

$3,795.00

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Item Code: 490-1599

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This weapon is identified by the name “W. J. MORROW” carved into the stock and by serial number through records at the National Archives.

Manufactured between 1862 and 1865, the Starr percussion carbines were all .54 caliber breechloaders fitted with 21” long, round tapered barrel. The carbine employed a split breech, drop block mechanism that allowed the trooper to insert a linen cased cartridge into the chamber of the breech. Upward motion of the operating lever / triggerguard closed the breech, and ignition was activated with the striking of a percussion cap by the external hammer. The weapon measures 37½.” The iron lockplate and frame were casehardened and the barrel blued.

The barrel on this Starr is a plumb brown with some scattered oxidation spots. It has the proper rear and front sights. Rear sight leaf is frozen. Stamped just forward of the rear sight is a very readable mark of “STARR ARMS Co. YONKERS, N.Y.” Bore has excellent rifling and is very clean. Barrel is held to the forearm by a single brass barrel band.

No sign of the original case colors remain on the lock and receiver. It is heavily mottled with light to moderate scattered surface pitting. Maker stampings on the lockplate are strong and read, “STARR ARMS CO. / YONKERS, N.Y.” in two lines. Receiver tang back of hammer is clearly stamped with “STARR’S PATENT / SEPT. 14th 1858” and also shows some pitting. Mechanics are good but hammer does not hold at half-cock. Breech block bears serial number 10875. Original nipple is present. Sling ring is attached to the left side of the receiver.

Forearm and butt appear to be untouched. Wood surface is in nice condition with only light wear that can be heavier in some spots. No inspector’s cartouche is visible. Butt has a brass plate and the top of the comb just forward of the butt tang has the faint initials “WJM.” Lightly carved into the left side of the butt is “W. J. MORROW.” Also, carved into the bottom of the forearm just forward of the receiver is a faint “W.” Stock does not show any cracks but just under the toe of the buttplate there is a 1.00 x 1.00 inch section of wood putty.

With the weapon are Xerox copies of records from the National Archives showing that carbine # 10875 was issued to Private William J. Morrow. There is also a letter from the Springfield Research Service attesting to that fact.

William J. Morrow first enlisted in Company K, 16th Illinois Cavalry on January 18, 1863 but never joined the regiment. He enlisted for a second time in Company F, 13th Illinois Cavalry on February 20, 1864. At the time he joined them the 13th Illinois was serving with the 7th Corps in the Department of Arkansas. While Morrow was in its ranks the regiment saw action at Arkadelphia, Okolona, Little Missouri River, Prairie d'Ane, Camden and Jenkins' Ferry.

Morrow was mustered out at Pilot Knob, Missouri on August 31, 1865.  [ad]

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