CIVIL WAR Antique NORWICH Mowry Contract M1861 INFANTRY Rifle-MUSKET .58
James D. Mowry US Model 1861 Infantry Rifle Musket
Here we present an antique U.S. Model 1861 Rifle-Musket, made on contract by James D. Mowry of Norwich Arms Co. of Norwich, Connecticut circa 1864. Only about 22,000 of these rifles came out of this contract, quite a small number when compared to the total. The M1861 is representative of the “everyman’s” rifle during the American Civil 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 solid, round ball.
This .58 caliber rifle’s lock is dated “1864” and marked with a federal eagle and “U.S./NORWICH”. The left side of the barrel has the “V/P/eagle head” proofs. Inspector cartouches are very clear and makes this scarce contract variant even more special. The maker has put his own stamp of approval on the rifle which reads “JAS’D MOWRY/NORWICH/CONN.” also on the right side of the lock.
The overall condition is very good. The bore is bright with sharp rifling. The action is excellent. A great example of the Everyman’s Musket!
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 40 inches.
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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