Original U.S. Springfield Model 1822 Flintlock Musket by Springfield Armory - Dated 1826

Item Description

Original item: One Only. The U.S. Model 1822 Musket was a .69 caliber smoothbore flintlock, with a 42-inch barrel and an overall length of 58 inches. It replaced the previous model 1816 musket, and often is viewed as a further development of that design. 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.

The Model 1822 was produced by the Springfield Armory, Harpers Ferry Armory, and numerous other contractors. It was eventually replaced by the Springfield Model 1835, which is also considered by many to be a continuation of the Model 1816. These were sometimes referred to as "Whitney Flintlocks" due to the large number made in New Haven, Connecticut by Eli Whitney. Later, many were converted to percussion for further service, and many of these saw service in the U.S. Civil war.

This example however was never converted, and was originally manufactured at the Springfield Armory itself in 1826, as indicated by markings on the tail of the lock plate:


There is also a clear EAGLE over U.S. on the lock plate in front of the hammer, which is crisp on the excellent condition lock plate. The 42" smooth bore barrel is marked with P / Eagle's head / V on the top of the breech, the correct proof marks for this era. The tang is dated 1826, and the and the left side is marked S.M.Co., for the Springfield Manufacturing Company of Ludlow, Mass., who worked as a contractor for the national armories. There are also some other markings stamped, though they are not clear.

This example is in great display condition, with a lovely patina showing decades of careful cleaning. The lock is fully functional, and holds correctly at half-cock, firing at full cock. It has a very strong main spring, so some effort is required to cock it. The metalwork has a really nice patina, and the wood stock is in great shape with a very nice color, with only minor wear. There is even a visible cartouche on the left side by the lock screws, though we cannot quite make it out. The original cleaning rod is still present, and both sling swivels are intact and functional. We checked the bore, and is is clear, but there is dirt and probably some powder fouling.

An excellent example of an early stage in the evolution of the U.S. Musket! Ready to display!


Year of Manufacture: 1826
Caliber: .69"
Cartridge Type: Ball and Powder
Barrel Length: 42 Inches
Overall Length: 57 1/2 Inches
Action type: Side Action Percussion Lock
Feed System: Muzzle Loading

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.

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