Thursday, February 23, 2017

Manufactured by the Pennsylvania Committee of Safety gun factory at Lancaster, Pennsylvania circa 1776-1777.




Under direction by the Continental Congress, the Committee of Safety established the Lancaster factory in February of 1776, as well as the French Creek Factory and Continental Brass Foundry in Philadelphia, which supplied component parts to Lancaster.




The pistol has a pin-fastened, part-round/part-octagon French-made, 62 caliber, smoothbore barrel. The left barrel flat is stamped with a "Crown/FW" which is a French proofmark.
The lock plate bears markings associated with the French Creek Factory, flat with beveled edges and a distinct tail, a flat, reinforced cock with beveled edges, and a detachable brass pan.
The side plate and side plate screws are faintly stamped with a "7", the assembler's mark for armorer station #7 at the Continental Factory. 



The bottom of the trigger guard is boldly stamped "3. E./Arrow 3.", the mark of Pennsylvania ownership. Markings such as these were assigned to the States, so the arms could be returned to their State of origin after the Revolution, without giving away their point of origin to the British, if captured.
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Sunday, February 19, 2017

My 3rd post on Original Patchboxes. I added the first two posts to the end of this one so all 36 are in one post.















***********12/29/2016***********















*************11/09/2016************






























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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Battle of Kettle Creek




On this day in 1779, a Patriot militia force of 340 led by Colonel Andrew Pickens of South Carolina with Colonel John Dooly and Lieutenant Colonel Elijah Clarke of Georgia attacked the camp of 700 Loyalist militia commanded by Colonel James Boyd at Kettle Creek, Georgia.

The Patriots attempted a two-pronged attack. Pickens’ line engaged the Loyalists, while Dooly and Clarke’s men attempted to cross the creek and surround the Loyalist from both sides. Dooly and Clarke troops were soon bogged down in the swampy crossing.

The Loyalists had the upper hand until they saw their commander, Boyd, collapse from a musket wound. 
The tide turned. Panicked, they disintegrated into a disorderly retreat towards the creek as Pickens’ Patriots fired down upon their camp from above. Shortly thereafter, the two South Carolina commanders, Dooly and Clarke, emerged with their men from the swamp and surrounded the shocked Loyalists, who were attempting to retreat across the creek.

By the end of the action, the Loyalists suffered 70 killed and another 70 captured, compared to 9 killed and 23 wounded for the Patriots. The victory was significant in delaying British control of Georgia the largely Loyalist colony. 




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Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Model 1817 Common Rifle























The rifle was referred to as the "Common Rifle" to distinguish it from the breech loading Model 1819 Hall rifle that was also manufactured and used in the same period. 
All rifled military arms are relatively rare in this time period. Most of the U.S. and world military men were still armed with smoothbore muskets until the invention of the Minie ball/bullet increased the speed of loading rifles.
The U.S. was at the forefront of rifle use and even fielded riflemen units during the Revolutionary War and War of 1812.
The Model 1817 was the standard U.S. infantry rifle from 1817 until the adoption of the U.S. Model 1841 Rifle around the time of the Mexican War.

Interestingly, the rifle is one of the only primary U.S. muzzleloading longarms manufactured entirely by contractors instead of the national armories.
The Harper's Ferry Arsenal produced a pattern model, which was replicated by gunsmith Henry Deringer, of Philadelphia and supplied to the other four different gunsmiths to be copied. A total of 38,400 were manufactured by the five firms from 1817 to 1842.



The pictured rifle is one of 5000 that Robert Johnson of, Middletown, Connecticut, produced in the early 1820s. The lock plate has "R. JOHNSON/U [eagle motif] S/MIDDN CONN. At the center of the lock and a small vertical "1824" stamp on the tail offset towards the top.



As a side note
When converted to the percussion system, using the drum method, some of these rifles saw use during the American Civil War. Company ‘A’ of the 2nd Mississippi Infantry carried these rifles.


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Friday, February 10, 2017

The Treaty of Paris



On this date in 1763 the Treaty of Paris was signed ending the French & Indian War. 
The results of the war effectively ended French political and cultural influence in North America. England gained all French possessions east of the Mississippi, except New Orleans and vastly strengthened its hold on the continent. (All French possessions west of the Mississippi are given to the Spanish).
Though the war seemed to strengthen England's hold on the colonies, the effects of the French and Indian War played a major role in the worsening relationship between England and its colonies that eventually led into the Revolutionary War.
The war also had subtler results. It badly eroded the relationship between England and Native Americans and the colonies would feel their wrath. 

Preparing to Meet the Enemy by Robert Griffing



Image result for treaty of paris 1763 boundaries map


Sunday, February 5, 2017

A Contemporary Rescue of a New England School Flintlock



Love this rifle. It is a well done contemporary rescue of an beautiful original. It is impossible for my eye to tell where the old stops and the contemporary begins. I have no clue as to who may have done the restoring and my hat is off to him whoever he is.
It has been repaired in New England style like that found on rifles by Silas Allen, Melchoir Fordney, G. Feder, Abraham Schweitzer, and others during the American Long Rifle's Golden Age as well as later rifles built in the Northeast.
I’m thinking the stock may have originally been full length, wedges appear modern.
The barrel and lock appear contemporary and have been artificially aged to a dark brown patina with some texture and minor oxidation. The breech has an honest dark patina and moderate pitting. The brass and silver have an aged patina. 

I can't tell if all the silver inlays are new or not, so well done only an expert will know. (and that leaves me out)
This modified half stock rifle has so many attractive features. Certainly the patchbox finial is the most readily noticeable. However other points like the primarily floral designs among the engraving patterns, a pewter forend cap, silver wedge shields, silver wire scroll and floral designs. Also, attractive shaping of the breech section of the stock, an unmarked thumb plate, shallow cheekpiece with elaborate silver wire and plate inlays with scroll tips. All added to a finely figured curly maple half stock. The plain aged lock and trigger are overshadowed by the care and attention given to the restoration. Wish it was mine.