Original U.S. Lancaster County Pennsylvania Percussion Rifle with Half Stock & Set Trigger - circa 1850

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. Just purchased out of an old Pennsylvania collection! Here is an octagonal barreled very nice "Pennsylvania" style rifle, often referred to as a "Kentucky" Rifle. The design developed in Pennsylvania, and then spread down the Ohio River Valley to Kentucky, where it was very popular. It has a substantial .39" caliber octagonal barrel with 7 groove rifling, one of the standard calibers we usually see these in. This example is typical of the style of rifle made in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, and is a bit more utilitarian in design. It has a more substantial butt stock, and is overall more heavily built in the stock than earlier examples from other areas.

There are no markings on the rifle except for US 5781, which looks very much to be a museum inventory number, so this rifle at one time was probably part of a local museum. Definitely some interesting research potential!

We estimate that this octagonal barrel rifle was made about 1850, and it features mostly "German Silver" cupronickel alloy mounts, with the patch box and lock screw escutcheon being made from brass. It has a lovely half length stock in very good condition, which is made of walnut that shows some lovely figuring, including an area of "burl" in the butt stock. There is no cracking or other damage that we can see, and it really is in great shape. The left side has a lovely cheek piece carved in, and the brass patch box on the right side is also very nice. There are some "German Silver" plates under the fore end to be used as rest or hand guard.

As with most Pennsylvania rifles, this example is fitted with a "set trigger", where depressing the rear trigger first until it clicks and just touching the front trigger discharges the weapon, hopefully with great accuracy. It is fully functional at present, this example does not have any provision for a half cock position. The rear trigger must be set, and then the hammer can be pulled back to full cock, after which a very light touch of the front trigger discharges the lock.

The bore is in very good condition, with with clear rifling and a partly bright finish, showing wear to the lands from use, as well as some powder fouling and oxidation. There is a simple brass fit wooden cleaning rod installed, which is most likely a working life replacement.

A very nice utilitarian example of a mid 19th Century "Pennsylvania" rifle, ready to add to your collection!


Year of Manufacture: circa 1850
Caliber: approx .39" seven groove rifling
Cartridge Type: Ball and Powder
Barrel Length: 38Inches

Overall Length: 53 Inches
Action type: Back Action Percussion Lock
Feed System: Muzzle Loading

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    New Jersey

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