1890 mfr. Antique WINCHESTER Model 1873 .38-40 WCF Lever Action SHORT RIFLE
Shortened Octagonal Barrel & Magazine
Here we present an antique Winchester 1873 Lever Action Short Rifle in .38-40 WCF, made in 1890 in New Haven, Connecticut. The Model 1873 is one of the most iconic of American rifles. Given the moniker “The Gun that Won the West”, the 1873 was there during the Indian Wars and Range Wars of the late 19th century. Cowboys, Natives, settlers, miners, law enforcement, express companies and hunters all found these rifles and carbines useful tools. These rifles made excellent companions to revolvers at the time as they were chambered for the same ammunition, meaning that the user only had to keep one type to feed both guns. One could easily defend the homestead and provide for his family with this versatile weapon.
The 1873 really was the quintessential Western rifle, handily outpacing all the muzzle-loading and Civil War surplus guns that also made their way to the frontier. Still an icon in the modern day, it was manufactured between 1873 and 1923. It was originally chambered for the .44-40 cartridge, which was the first centerfire cartridge which became immensely popular. The 1873 was later produced in .38-40, .32-20, and .22. The Model 1873 was produced in three variations: a 24-inch barrel rifle, a 20-inch barrel carbine, and a “musket”, which was aimed at military contracts and only made up less than 5% of production. In all, over 720,000 Model 1873s were produced.
This one features a shortened octagonal barrel and magazine tube. This modification was likely intended to make the rifle handier, though it also could have been necessitated by some kind of damage to the barrel or magazine tube. The front and rear sights have been replaced by Marbles sights. The original rear sight dovetail has been filled and blends with the barrel quite well. The new rear sight got a new dovetail and 4 even lines scored at the front. The right side of the forearm has six notches cut into it. The left side of the wrist has been spliced long ago. The letter “B” is stamped into the bottom of the receiver.
The overall condition is good. Strong, crisp action. Good bore for the age. The walnut stock is solid throughout with the noted repair. The top receiver tang is cracked around the screw but remains stable. An interesting old Winchester 1873 that has some modifications and shows lots of use.
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 20 inches.
Caliber: .38-40 WCF
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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