MICHIGAN CAVALRY BRIGADE OR OHIO SHARPSHOOTERS’ SPENCER RIFLE

$9,500.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 766-1727

This Model 1860 Spencer Army Rifle #2340 falls squarely in the third purchase lot of 1,200 Spencer rifles with serial numbers estimated by Sword as running from 2201/51 to 3401/51. Two hundred of these were drawn off to complete those ordered for the 5th Michigan Cavalry, which ended up shared by the 6th Michigan Cavalry as well. The remaining 1,000 were shipped to Columbus, Ohio, on January 19, 1863, for the First Battalion of Ohio Sharpshooters, the 5th through 8th Independent Companies, who were assigned to the headquarters of Rosecrans and Thomas. This rifle is bracketed by two Spencers, #2325 and #2343 recorded on February 25, 1863, in the hands of, the 7th Company OVSS, which went on to become Sherman’s Bodyguard as well, though the numbers are incomplete, with only about 237 showing up the Springfield Research record tables we have looked at, which cover only the 5th, 6th and 7th Companies in brief snapshots, and the Michigan numbers are known only as falling within the range of the first three purchase lots (See Marcot and Sword.)

Most early Spencer rifles saw hard service. Their revolutionary 7-shot repeating design made them much sought after and guns might also be turned in a reissued to other units for further field service. This is complete and all original, a very good example compared to most. All sights, bands, springs, swivels and magazine tube are in place. The metal is smooth, with crisp markings: the Spencer address and patent markings on top of the receiver and the serial number on the wrist at the hammer. The barrel shows lots of blue-turned-plum brown mixed with muted silver-gray, with some blue on the rear sight. The receiver shows a typical mix of mottled gray, brown, with some faint bluish tones from faded case hardening, with some shallow salt and pepper pitting on the lower edge of the receiver and sides of the wrist. The two forward bands have good color. The rear band has some color but also shows rubbing, which is natural from resting in the soldier’s left hand in firing. The wood has nice matching color, but does show handling marks, dings and a divot/shall shallow chip on the left forestock below the rear sight. The buttstock has some dings along the top of the comb, shallow scratches and dings on the flats, and an old chip out at the toe. There is a very slight shrinkage gap and slim chip at the wrist. There are no visible cartouches left, but we do note the presence of ten small, narrow notches, that are certainly a record of something by the gun’s user. The mechanics are good. The magazine tube is present. We note also the rifle does not have the common “Spencer crack” in the buttstock- a hairline that often shows up on Spencers following the line of the drilled out cavity for the buttstock.

Given the serial number, this would make a great addition to either a cavalry or infantry display, as well as being a good example of one the first Spencers reach the army in very early 1863. [sr] [ph:L]

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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