Antique CIVIL WAR Contract COLT SPECIAL Model 1861 EVERYMAN’S Rifle-MUSKET
“1864” Dated Lock & Barrel with BAYONET!
Here we present an antique Civil War Colt Special Contract Model 1861 Percussion Rifle-Musket, produced in 1864 at the Colt’s Patent Fire Arms Manufacturing Company of Hartford, Connecticut. Production began in September of 1862 while the war was in full swing. The Union was still trying to make up for arms shortages and the destruction of the Harpers Ferry Armory with production at Springfield, supplementing this with contracts with over 20 other contractors, like Colt, for rifle-muskets.
The M1861 is representative of the “everyman’s” rifle during the war. About 1.5 million rifle-muskets were made in the U.S., over 800,000 of which were made by the Springfield Armory. This was the last hurrah of the rifle-musket as arms development and tactics rapidly advanced during the short period of the American Civil War. Nevertheless, the 1861 represented new technology as it was made for use with the Minié ball, a hollow based, conical projectile that was small enough to quickly push down the muzzle of a rifled barrel and expanded to create a good gas seal unlike a solid, round ball. Almost immediately after the war, the US military switched from the old muzzle loading type weapons to the newer breech loading rifles, bringing an end to the musket as a standard frontline firearm in American history.
The American Civil War raged from April 12, 1861 to May 9, 1865 in which roughly 130,000 Special Model 1861 muskets were produced by Colt for the US government. Like the Springfield production of the Model 1861, the Colt could be considered the “everyman’s” infantry weapon.
The overall condition is very good. Strong action. Nice bore with strong rifling. The walnut stock is solid with cartouches remaining on the left stock flat. “MNM” is marked on the left barrel flat. “WV” is marked on the back of the butt plate. “1864” is dated on the lock and barrel. “US” stamped on the lock and butt plate tang. The included bayonet is in good shape.
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 40 inches.
Caliber: .58 Percussion
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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