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Original U.S. Springfield M-1822 Percussion Converted Shortened Musket by Harpers Ferry - dated 1830

Item Description

Original item: Only One Available. Well these do not come out of the attic that often but here it is. We received this shortened percussion conversion musket along with about 200 other guns, from a collection that sat in an attic for close to 100 years. 

The US Springfield Arsenal Model 1822 Musket was a .69 caliber musket manufactured and used in the United States during the 19th Century. It is a continuation of the Model 1816 line of muskets but is generally referred to as its own model number rather than just a variant of the Model 1816. One of the most noticeable differences in the Model 1822 is the attachment of the lower sling swivel. The forward part of the trigger bow was provided with an enlargement which was drilled to receive the sling swivel rivet. Previously, the sling swivel had been affixed to a stud in front of the trigger bow. All of these muskets were 58 inches long, with a barrel around 42 inches in length.

This example however was shortened by 9 inches at some point, and was also converted to percussion. Most likely it was converted in the 1840s or 50s, though it is possible it was done for use in the Civil War. Definitely an interesting musket with some real history!

This example was originally manufactured at the Harpers Ferry Armory in 1830, as indicated by markings on the tail of the lock plate:


There is also a very faint EAGLE over U.S. on the lock plate in front of the hammer, though unfortunately the barrel proofs have been worn away. The musket's mounts are all of iron and the iron lock plate shows old rust speckling, which actually is not bad at all. There is some powder burn and surface oxidation, as expected for a musket that saw long service. The ramrod is still present, but has been shortened, or could be a working life replacement.

The lock functions correctly, though is a bit finicky. Also the cap lock bolster is present, but the cap nipple is unfortunately missing, but could easily be replaced.

A very nice display piece, ready to hang on the wall is, or dress up a bit to make a real showpiece.

History of the Model 1822 Musket:

The War of 1812 had revealed many weaknesses in American muskets. The Model 1812 Musket was created in an attempt to improve both the design and manufacture of the musket. The Model 1816 made further improvements, and replaced the Model 1812. The Model 1812 had borrowed heavily from the design of the French Charleville model 1777 musket, and this design was retained for the Model 1816. The Model 1816 had a 42 inch long .69 caliber smoothbore barrel, similar to the Model 1812, but had a longer lock plate, a shorter trigger guard, and a longer bayonet than the Model 1812. The Model 1816 also had a more straight lined stock. The overall length of the weapon was 58 inches.

The Model 1816 musket was originally produced at the Harpers Ferry and Springfield Arsenals between 1816 and 1844. Around 675,000 were made, more than any other flintlock in U.S. history.

The Model 1816 was originally produced as a flintlock musket. Like many flintlock muskets, many of these were later converted to percussion cap, as the percussion cap system was much more reliable and weather resistant.

This model of Springfield musket was used by Texans during the Texas Revolution and by the US Army and militia during the Mexican-American War. During this conflict, the flintlock version of the Model 1816 was preferred by U.S. regular forces, due to percussion cap supply concerns.

It was also used during the early years of the American Civil War until around 1862.

Many improvements to the Model 1816 were made, producing the Model 1822, Model 1835, Model 1840, and Model 1842. U.S. Ordnance Department referred to these as different models, but in other U.S. government documents they are referred to as a continuation of the Model 1816. Modern histories are similarly inconsistent in the nomenclature of these weapons.


Year of Manufacture: 1830 - Shortened Later
Caliber: .69"
Cartridge Type: Ball and Powder
Barrel Length: 33 1/2 Inches

Overall Length: 49 Inches
Action type: Side Action Percussion Lock
Feed System: Muzzle Loading

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