I bought this today. It belonged to her father and she is downsizing. The forward part of the stock has been cut down. It has some rust, but otherwise not too bad. It is an interesting part of the US history. It it the first percussion musket after the flint lock models and the last smooth bore. It is an 1842 model made in 1846. 69 caliber. Some were still in use during the Civil War.
The picture needed to be flipped to be correct. It is a right hand model, not a left. I shoot left handed, so did not catch the error right-a-way.
Actually, the M1841 percussion rifle (AKA the Mississippi Rifle) was developed and issued prior to the M1842. the M1842 musket was one of the first US muskets to be built at two separate facilities (Springfield and Harpers Ferry) with interchangeable parts. Yes, large number were used by both sides right up until the end of the Civil War. Shooting the 'buck and ball' load it could be devastating at close range. If it is safe, they are a ball to shoot.
I've got one dated 1844 with an uncut stock but it is badly rusted. The eagle on the lock is not legible, that's how rust ate it is. I've used it and done work on it since I got it over 20 years ago. I had the bore relined two years ago. It's possible to restore your stock if you wanted too. There are spare parts for the 42 some of which are original.
Boy!.....if that ol' musket could only talk,huh Darel? To my way of thinking, it could actually sorta' have three separate histories. About a 15 year history from when made until the Civil War, then possibly a Civil War history, and if I'm not mistaken, many of those with a cut-down stocks like yours were modified for use as a sort of "foraging gun" for hunting small game by pioneers moving out West by wagon train. A nice piece to own,.....harold
Correct me if i'm wrong, but weren't many model 1842 muskets actually model 1816 flintlock muskets that were converted to percussion cap? I thought i'd read something like that awhile back. Either way it is a very nice musket; i'm sure it has some very interesting history behind it. I've been thinking of picking up a springfield trapdoor I saw for sale at a local store.
Pulled this print out of U.S. Military Firearms.
My best guess is the musket was a Bannerman's special, a cut down musket sold as a shotgun after the war.
Matthew, To answer you question: no the M1842 was distinctly separate from the M1816. Most M1816's were made by private contractors like: Nippes, Whitney, Evans, among others. There were also made by Harpers Ferry and Springfield. However, they were largely hand built guns and parts interchangeability was minimal. You are correct that many of the 1816's were later converted to percussion by either cone-in-barrel method or bolster. Some were even rifled and sighted. Most were moved to reserve or secondary usage as soon as more modern rifled muskets became available in the Civil War.
That should clean up well if care is taken. A little BreakFree CLP and some 4/0 steel wool should do the trick. A couple good scrubbings with mineral spirits and red rag should clean up the stock well. Wait a couple of days and then an BLO oil scrub, then wipe down should spiffy it up well. Avoid sanding stock !!
George n L.A.
I was born and raised in Springfield, then moved one town East when I was six. I like anything "Springfield" cars, guns, planes, you name it. Interesting bit of history on Springfield guns. As the Armory made new guns and updated the old ones (or made repairs)they did something very interesting with the old rifle barrels. Anyone care to guess what use they were recycled for? It's a unique part of our Hampden county's history. They were sold off to land surveyors to be used as property marker pins. Most all property in the county that had been measured and pinned uses old rifle barrels. On the deed and plot plan the term "RBF" and "RBS" are almost always used. It stands for Rifle Barrel Found or Rifle Barrel Set. As you can imagine as a young boy who like cars and guns, if we came across one sticking up in the ground, we pulled them out to play cowboys and indians! I am sure there are a lot of people who got upset when they went looking for their property marker!