Original U.S. Civil War Era Springfield Model 1842 Percussion Musket by Springfield Armory - dated 1849
Original item: One Only. The US Model 1842 Musket was a .69 caliber musket manufactured and used in the United States during the 19th Century. It was a continuation of the Model 1816 line of muskets but is generally referred to by its own model number rather than just a variant of the Model 1816. All of these muskets were 58 inches long, with a barrel around 42 inches in length.
The Model 1842 was the last U.S. smoothbore musket produced. Many features that had been retrofitted into the Model 1840 were standard on the Model 1842. The Model 1842 was the first U.S. musket to be produced with a percussion lock, though most of the Model 1840 flintlocks ended up being converted to percussion locks before reaching the field. The percussion cap system was vastly superior to the flintlock, being much more reliable and much more resistant to weather.
The Models 1840 & 1842 were made with thicker barrel walls, with the intention that they could be rifled later, however this example is still in the original smoothbore configuration. It is marked with an "American Eagle" over US, and the lock plate tail is clearly marked SPRING / FIELD / 1849. Many of these muskets were produced under contract, however this example was made at Springfield Armory itself. The rifle side plate is thin and not bulged, as typical of the Model 1842 Musket. Previous iterations had had a more pronounced side plate with a bulge in the middle. The barrel nocks form still has V / P / Eagle's Head proof marks visible, though the barrel tang date has worn away.
With all iron mounts this .69 caliber musket is in very good condition, with the original ramrod present, along with both barrel bands and the nose cap. The butt plate is correctly U.S. marked. It still has both sling swivels present, one on the middle barrel band (repaired) and one on the front of the trigger guard. There is powder burn near the cap bolster, which has eroded away the stock near that area, and the metalwork shows deterioration in that area as well. The cap nipple cone looks to be original, and shows wear from oxidation and cleaning, and the lock still functions correctly, holding correctly at half cock and firing at full. We checked the bore, and it is still smoothbore, and was not rifled later, as many were.
The metalwork overall has a bright speckled finish from years of cleaning. It looks to have been lacquered at one point, similar to the original brown lacquer often used, but definitely a lighter shade. There are some spots still present on the metalwork, with the rest polished bright. There is definitely erosion around the barrel nocks form due to cleaned away powder residue.
The stock has a lovely lacquered finish, most likely applied after frontline service was completed. It gives the stock a lovely color and semi-gloss appearance. There are some minor cracks around the front of the lock plate and the rear lock screw, but no major structural issues with the stock.
Almost certainly this musket saw service in the U.S. Civil War, very possibly for the Confederacy. Ready to cherish and display!
Year of Manufacture: 1849
Cartridge Type: Ball and Powder
Barrel Length: 42 Inches
Overall Length: 58 Inches
Action type: Side Action Percussion Lock
Feed System: Muzzle Loading
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