Historic Firearms & Early Militaria: Live Auction

Historic Firearms & Early Militaria: Live Auction

Wednesday, May 3, 2017  |  10:00 AM Eastern
Auction closed.
Historic Firearms & Early Militaria: Live Auction

Historic Firearms & Early Militaria: Live Auction

Wednesday, May 3, 2017  |  10:00 AM Eastern
Auction closed.
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Our Spring auction will include fresh-to-the-market rifles, pistols, powder horns, edged weapons, uniforms and accoutrements. Featuring the final part of Mel Flanagan's Collection, plus NMLRA & more.

Cowan's Auctions


(513) 871-1670
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Pg : 1 of 19

Austrian Elliptical Blunderbuss

Lot # 1 (Sale Order: 1 of 458)      

1.9" x 1.24" elliptical bore, 25.9" octagonal-to-round iron barrel. 41.1" in overall length. Flat, bevelled, stepped iron lock with flat reinforced cock. Original flint configuration. Iron furniture and sling bar. Brass blade front sight, iron band at stock tip. Pinned Austrian beech stock. Circa 1790.

Condition: About fine overall. Lightly cleaned metal with smooth gray color with a thin layer of surface oxidation developing. Mechanically functional. Good bore with moderate oxidation. Stock with good edges and lines, some wood loss around pins, and one pin loose.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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British Cannon Barrel Blunderbuss

Lot # 2 (Sale Order: 2 of 458)      

1.581" diameter canon barrel muzzle, 18" round brass barrel with baluster turned rings at the breech and 5.25" and 7.5" from the breech. 7.25" long flat iron British military lock marked TOWER to the rear of the hammer and with a CROWN/GR forward of the hammer as well as with a British military Crown/Broad Arrow mark. Flat, reinforced cock, unbridled, faceted iron pan, original flintlock configuration. Brass furniture with 2nd Model Brown Bess type serpentine sideplate. Barrel marked LONDON and Minories in an arc. London commercial proof marks. Walnut stock with raised carved "beaver tail" around breech tang, barrel pinned to stock. Flat brass buttplate secured by nails. Wooden ramrod a replacement. Circa 1750-1770.

Condition: Fine. Brass with attractive patina, lock with smooth brown, un-cleaned look. Markings mostly crisp and clear. Mechanically functional. Stock fine and crisp, with expected handling marks and dings and some minor wood loss around the pins.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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British Tower Brass Barrel Blunderbuss

Lot # 3 (Sale Order: 3 of 458)      

1.6" diameter muzzle with 20.125" long brass barrel with a 4" octagonal breech section stepped up to a round barrel ending with a canon muzzle. Unknown proof on top of breech flat. Rounded iron British military musket lock, marked TOWER to the rear of the hammer and CROWN/GR forward of the hammer with British ordnance crown/broad arrow marking as well. Rounded reinforced cock with rounded, bridled, fenced iron pan. Irish alphanumeric registration number Q627 on the right side of the barrel. Walnut stock with flat toe line and rudimentary raised carving around the breech plug tang. Wooden ramrod.

Condition: Very good. Brass with a pleasing mellow patina, iron lock with even light pitting and lightly cleaned grayish patina. Mechanically functional. Good bore. Stock very good, with small crack in raised carving at tang.

EST $ 1500 - 2500...more

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Brass Barrel Blunderbuss By Waters

Lot # 4 (Sale Order: 4 of 458)      

1.5" flared canon muzzle, .73" at breech, pinned 15.8" round brass barrel with baluster turned rings at the breech and the transition to the canon muzzle. 6" slightly rounded iron lock with pointed tail, marked WATERS behind the hammer, and British crown forward of hammer. Unbridled, rounded iron pan with fence. Rounded swan neck cock. Barrel marked PROVED in two arced lines at the breech. Brass furniture including acorn wrist escutcheon, buttplate, flat S-shaped sideplate, triggerguard and two ramrod pipes. Brass tipped wood rammer with iron wiper at end. Consignor notes indicate that they feel the gun was assembled in America circa 1800.

Provenance: The William Locke Collection (pictured on pages 419-420 of Seller's book), The DuPont Collection, Mel Flanagan collection via John Gangle.

Condition: Good to very good overall. Brass with a nice butterscotch patina, lock with a dusky blue-gray and oxidized brown patina. Stock with some minor chips around the lock, as well as scattered nicks and dings. Lock mechanically functional, but a re-conversion to flint, as the pan has been welded to the lock.

EST $ 3000 - 5000...more

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Irish Brass Blunderbuss By Rigby

Lot # 5 (Sale Order: 5 of 458)      

1.58" flared canon muzzle, 14.4" octagonal-to-round brass barrel with baluster turned rings at the transition. Flat iron water proof lock with roller frizzen and flat reinforced cock. Lock marked RIGBY. Brass barrel marked DUBLIN on the top flat and with the Irish registration number WI 967. Wedge secured barrel with brass furniture in walnut stock. Brass tipped iron ramrod. Circa 1st quarter of the 19th century. The firm of John Rigby & Company was established in Dublin in 1775 and remained a family gun making business in that city through several generations into the 1890s, at which time it relocated to London and remains one of the premier sporting arms manufactures in the world today.

Condition: Good to very good. Brass with a smooth, mellow bronze patina. Iron lock with a smoky blue gray patina and some pitting. Mechanically functional, good bore. Stock about good, with moderate wear, dings and mars, some tiny cracks around the wedges with associated wood loss. A nice example of a scarce Irish made blunderbuss from the early 1800s by a very famous maker.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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Spanish Cannon Barrel blunderbuss

Lot # 6 (Sale Order: 6 of 458)      

1.82" flared cannon muzzle, 17" pinned brass octagonal-to-round barrel with cast relief decorations at the transition. Walnut stock, iron sling swivels. Iron migulet percussion lock with grotesque monster head cock. Flat brass sideplate and buttplate. 

Condition: Very good. Even patina on the brass, moderately oxidized lock fully functional, wood with minor handling marks.

EST $ 1000 - 1500...more

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British Iron Mounted Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 7 (Sale Order: 7 of 458)      

1.278" flared muzzle, 14.6" wedge retained octagonal-to-round barrel with baluster turned rings at the transition. Full-length walnut stock checkered at the wrist with iron furniture. Flat rounded iron lock secured with a single screw, with loose foliate scroll engraving, fenced iron pan and flat swan neck cock, engraved en suite. Etched Damascus pattern barrel, post-1813 Birmingham proofs under the barrel. Brass tipped wooden ram rod. Circa 1820.

Condition: Good to very good. Metal with a mostly plum brown patina, and evenly distributed oxidation, pinpricking and some light pitting. Lock functional, bore heavily oxidized. Stock with tight, repaired crack though lock mortise and wrist. Otherwise the stock remains crisp.

EST $ 1500 - 2000...more

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British Brass Barrel Flintlock Blunderbuss With Folding Bayonet

Lot # 8 (Sale Order: 8 of 458)      

24" flared canon muzzle, 15.3" pinned brass octagonal-to-round barrel with polygonal transition and a pair of baluster turned rings. Baluster rings at muzzle transition as well. Half stocked with checkered wrist and folding bayonet under barrel. Flat stepped iron lock marked FOWLER. Waterproof rounded, fenced iron pan with roller frizzen. Flat swan neck cock with simple engraved motifs. Top of barrel engraved London with two Crowned/Crossed Scepters proofs at breech. Side mounted wooden rammer with brass tip. Circa 1810.

Condition: Very good. Brass with a deep golden patina. Good bore. Lightly pitted lock is mechanically functional. Snap bayonet functions correctly as well. Stock with old repaired crack on reverse at nose cap and showing some bumps and dings as would be expected.

EST $ 3000 - 4000...more

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French Brass Barrel Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 9 (Sale Order: 9 of 458)      

2.09" flared muzzle, 16.25" pinned brass octagonal-to-round barrel, with step and large baluster turned ring at transition. Full-length walnut stock heavy brass furniture. Unmarked iron banana shaped lock with rounded, fenced, bridled iron pan. Rounded swan neck cock. Single proof or maker's mark on top barrel flat. Trumpet-shaped iron rammer. 

Condition: Fine overall. Brass with a deep umber patina. Fine bore and mechanics. Lock is lightly oxidized over a pewter patina. Stock is very fine a crisp, with only light handling marks.

EST $ 1500 - 2500...more

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British Flintlock Brass Barrel Blunderbuss with Folding Bayonet By Griffin

Lot # 10 (Sale Order: 10 of 458)      

1.23" flared canon muzzle, 17.8" pinned brass octagonal-to-round barrel with baluster turned rings at transition. Walnut stock, side-mounted folding bayonet, brass mounts and furniture. Flat pointed iron lock marked GRIFFIN with simple border line engraving and embellishments. Flat swan neck cock engraved en suite. Brass trigger guard with acorn finial, lightly engraved buttplate and sideplate, bayonet release on sideplate. Stock with raised carved apron around the iron breech tang in a shell motif. 14" side mounted bayonet and wooden ramrod. Circa 1750-1770, prior to becoming Griffin & Tow.

Condition: Very good to fine. Brass with a golden patina, good bore. Lock cleaned to bright in the European fashion. Mechanically functional, both lock and bayonet. Stock crisp with usual bumps and dings and an old coat of added varnish.

EST $ 4000 - 6000...more

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British Brass Barrel Blunderbuss with Folding Bayonet By Styan

Lot # 11 (Sale Order: 11 of 458)      

1.29" canon barrel muzzle, 14" octagonal-to-round wedge retained brass barrel with baluster turned rings at transition. Walnut stock, checkered at the wrist. Case hardened rounded-stepped waterproof lock with roller frizzen and flat swan neck cock and sliding safety. Lock marked STYAN and lightly engraved to the rear. Brass furniture including a scroll shaped semi-pistol gripped trigger guard with engraved pineapple finial, lightly engraved buttplate, and ramrod pipes with baluster turned rings. Breech with post-1813 Birmingham commercial proof marks and top flat marked Manchester. Top mounted, 12.75" long, folding bayonet. Wooden ramrod with horn tip. Circa 1830.

Condition: About fine overall. Brass with a mellow patina, all engraving and markings remaining sharp. Lock mechanically functional, bore very good. Snap bayonet functions perfectly. Stock fine and crisp with a few handling dings and marks and a small sliver missing at the transition between the octagon and round portions of the barrel on the obverse of the stock. A very fine English blunderbuss.

EST $ 2500 - 3500...more

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British Brass Barrel Blunderbuss By Joyner

Lot # 12 (Sale Order: 12 of 458)      

1.05" canon muzzle, 15.7" octagonal-to-round barrel with baluster turned rings at the transition. Full-length walnut stock with brass furniture that is lightly embellished with simple foliate engraving, trigger guard with pineapple finial. Brass lock with fenced pan marked Joyner with flat swan necked cock. Top of barrel marked LONDON with two London commercial proofs at breech. Brass tipped wooden ramrod with iron worm at end. Circa 1770.

Condition: Very good overall. Brass barrel, lock and furniture with dull ocher patina. Lock mechanically functional, good bore. Stock about good with some expertly executed repairs to the forend that are nearly invisible and would not have been discovered under cursory examination were it not for the consignor's notes. A really lovely little coaching carbine type blunderbuss from the late 1700s.

EST $ 1500 - 2000...more

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British Flintlock Brass Barrel Blunderbuss By Ketland

Lot # 13 (Sale Order: 13 of 458)      

1.18" flared canon muzzle, 14.5" pinned brass octagon to round barrel with baluster turned ring at transition and at muzzle flare. Rounded iron pointed lock marked KETLAND / & Co in two lines with rounded, fenced, bridled iron pan. Round swan neck cock. Top of barrel engraved LONDON with additional engraved embellishments of stars and a crescent moon, buttplate engraved with the same motifs, with stars on the trigger guard bow as well. Silver wire inlay around tang. Flat brass panoply of arms sideplate with two lock mounting screws, decorative brass wrist escutcheon. Brass tipped wooden ramrod with iron worm at end.

Condition: About fine, brass with a mellow mustard patina. Lock with a dusky gray patina and scattered surface oxidation. Lock mechanically functional. Stock about fine, showing the usual bumps and dings and a tiny area of wood loss at the trigger guard. Otherwise fine.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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British Brass barrel Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 14 (Sale Order: 14 of 458)      

1.24" canon barrel muzzle, 15.6" pinned round brass barrel with baluster turned rings at canon flare and breech. London commercial proofs on barrel. Walnut stock, plain brass furniture. Rounded iron lock marked GOFF with round, fenced iron pan and rounded cock. Brass tipped wooden rammer. Circa 1800.

Condition: Very good. Brass with mellow golden patina. Bore good. Lock with dull gray patina, well marked and mechanically functional. Stock about good with repaired wood at stock tip, a couple of cracks on the reverse at the tang and some wood loss along the ramrod channel.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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Early British Brass Barrel Flintlock Blunderbuss by Blanckley

Lot # 15 (Sale Order: 15 of 458)      

1.5" round swelled muzzle, 13.8" long raised breech octagonal to round pinned barrel with a polygonal transition that terminates in baluster turned rings. Full length walnut stock with brass furniture, most of which is attached with nails as was the common practice on many guns produced during the 17th century. Flat serpentine side plate secured with three lock bolts. 6" rounded banana lock with unbridled round iron pan, rounded swan neck cock. Lock engraved BLANCKLEY and with simple foliate scrolls. Breech with early London commercial proof marks, as well as Blanckley's *IB maker's mark. Wooden rammer. John Blanckley worked in London from 1669 through his death in 1700. This is a very early English blunderbuss, circa 1690.

Condition: Very good to fine, particularly for a gun that is in excess 300 years old. Brass with a medium golden patina from an old cleaning that is starting to tone down. Lock is functional, with a dark brown patina and some light pitting. All markings remain legible. Stock with expected nicks and dings, some wood loss around the sideplate and pins. A really attractive and scarce late 17th century blunderbuss.

EST $ 3000 - 4000...more

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Pair of British Brass Barreled Blunderbusses By E. Newton

Lot # 16 (Sale Order: 16 of 458)      

1.19" flared muzzles, 12" round pinned brass barrels, full length walnut stocks. Rounded brass locks marked E NEWTON with delicate boarder line engraving. Round, fenced brass pan, rounded swan neck cock boarder line engraved en suite, as is the frizzen. Barrels marked with commercial London proofs and a Crown/F maker's mark. Top of barrels marked GRANTHAM. Brass wrist escutcheons with delicately engraved decorations, and rounded S-shaped sideplate with tiny floral engraving at center. Walnut stock with neatly executed raised carved aprons around iron barrel tangs. Swelled wooden rammers with flat brass tips. Circa 1730.

Condition: Fine overall. Both blunderbusses have a lovely mellow golden patina to the brass. Good bores and fully functional locks in original flint configuration. All markings remain crisp and sharp. Stocks show only minor bumps, dings and handling marks. One stock shows a flaw in the obverse butt along the grain line. Really a lovely pair of diminutive brass barreled blunderbusses from the first part of the 1700s.

EST $ 7000 - 9000...more

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British Tower Brass Barrel Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 17 (Sale Order: 17 of 458)      

1.682" flared canon muzzle, 17.6" pinned round brass barrel with baluster turned rings at the breech and muzzle transition. Walnut stock, brass furniture. Rounded iron British military lock with bridled and fenced iron pan and rounded swan necked cock. Lock engraved TOWER to the rear of the hammer and with a Crown / GR forward of the hammer along with a Crown/Broad Arrow acceptance mark. Barrel with two Tower proofs, a pair of crowned crossed scepters. Flat geometric brass sideplate and sheet brass buttplate. Stock with raised carved apron around the iron breech tang. Brass tipped wooden rammer. Possibly a British naval blunderbuss, circa 1780.

Condition: Good to near very good. Brass with a mellow golden patina. Lock with a lightly oxidized gray patina and clear markings. Mechanically functional. Stock about good, with minor crack below lock mortise, running to triggeguard. Some wood loss around the pins as well. Buttplate slightly proud of the wood. Otherwise solid with bump, dings and bruises.

EST $ 2000 - 4000...more

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French Brass Barrel Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 18 (Sale Order: 18 of 458)      

2.15" flared muzzle, 15.5" wedge retained brass octagon to round barrel with baluster turned rings at the transition. Semi-pistol gripped checkered walnut stock. Rounded iron lock with rounded bridled fenced iron pan and round swan neck cock. Lock engraved in two-line script MARSELIN / FAURE forward of the lock and St. Etienne under the frizzen spring. Barrel with Crown / M proof mark at breech. Iron ramrod. Circa 1780.

Condition: Very good to fine. All brass with a pleasing mellow patina. Lock a mottled gray and brown with some scattered surface oxidation. Mechanically functional. Stock solid and crisp with sharp checkering. One tiny repair under the lock mortise. Otherwise showing only normal wear for a 200+ year old firearm.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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European Iron Mounted Blunderbuss

Lot # 19 (Sale Order: 19 of 458)      

1.5" flared muzzle (.67" at breech), pinned, octagonal-to-round iron barrel with baluster turned rings at the transition. Bright finish, European hardwood stock. 6.75" long, flat, beveled iron lock with teat at rear. Unbridled, faceted pan with flat, beveled swan neck cock. Scalloped iron buttplate, flat iron sideplate. Stock with simple incised carved lines. The initials "AM" are carved in the obverse butt twice, with the "A" in the form of a Masonic compass in one set. 

Condition: Good overall. Metal has been cleaned in the European fashion, and now has a smoky gray patina with oxidized discoloration. Mechanically functional, good bore. Stock with nicks, dings and mars. A plugged hole repair is present in the fore end at the rear pin, and a sliver is missing near the fore end tip on the reverse. Stock possibly shortened, fit at buttplate is crude.

EST $ 1000 - 1500...more

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Flintlock Blunderbuss By W. Calderwood

Lot # 20 (Sale Order: 20 of 458)      

1.91" flared muzzle, 25" pinned round iron barrel with baluster turned rings at breech. Bright finish, walnut stock, brass furniture. 4.75" flat, bevelled, stepped iron lock with rounded, fenced, waterproof pan and roller frizzen. Flat, bevelled swan neck cock. Lock marked W. CALDERWOOD. No proofs on exterior of barrel. Wooden ramrod. William Calderwood is listed in Sellers as a Pittsburgh gunsmith working ca 1819-1846. The consignor's notes list this as an American blunderbuss, and the Calderwood lock and lack of barrel proofs support that claim. It may be an assembled arm, as the stock does not appear to have the age of the metal parts and the quality of the fit of the furniture is somewhat suspect.

Condition: Good. Barrel cleaned to bright and showing some scuffs. Lock a mottled oxidized patina. Lock remains functional. Brass furniture with mellow ochre patina. Stock good, with repaired crack at front of lock mortise and on flat, opposite lock.

EST $ 1500 - 2500...more

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British Flintlock Brass Barrel Blunderbuss by Blacnkle

Lot # 21 (Sale Order: 21 of 458)      

1.77" flared canon barrel muzzle, 22.25" pinned octagonal brass barrel with large baluster turned ring at muzzle transition, at barrel transition, and large ring at breech. Walnut stock, iron furniture. Engraved, flat 6.75" iron lock with teat at rear, marked I / BLACNKLE on lock. Flat reinforced cock engraved with patterns matching the tail of the lock. Barrel marked with a depressed */IB and Crown/GP and Crown/V London proof marks. Flat iron sideplate secured with three screws, iron triggger guard and buttplate with large bulbous screws and nails. Buttplate engraved A27. Iron sling swivel near muzzle, and associated sling screw near toe. Wooden ramrod. John Blacnkle worked in London circa 1670-1700. 

Condition: Good. Brass with a nice patina, lock crisp with a mottled gray appearance. Mechanically functional, good bore. Wood very good as restocked with some wear and worm holes. Associated iron furniture may or may not be original to the gun as originally manufactured, particularly the flat side plate.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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German Iron Mounted Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 22 (Sale Order: 22 of 458)      


.95" flared muzzle (about .75" at breech), 26" pinned octagonal-to-round barrel with sets of baluster turned rings at the transitions. Iron furniture, European hardwood stock with horn fore end tip. Rounded lock with teat at rear and unbridled, faceted iron pan. Rounded, swan neck cock. Open work, two-screw sideplate, and open work wrist escutcheon. Stock with raised cheek piece and sling swivels in toe and near muzzle. Two rammer pipes, wood rammer.

Condition: Good overall. Has been cleaned in a European fashion, leaving the lock bright with some pits. Barrel toning down slightly, but showing some pits as well as some flaws. Mechanically functional, good bore. Stock with bumps and dings, repaired crack at wrist and a large, triangular inset repair on the reverse at the barrel transition.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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European Flintlock Blunderbuss

Lot # 23 (Sale Order: 23 of 458)      


1.85" flared muzzle (about .75" at breech), 25.25" round iron barrel, secured by pins and single screw that enters from the bottom. Flat, beveled, stepped lock with finial at rear, and flat rectangular pan. Flat reinforced cock. Iron buttplate, brass trigger guard. European hardwood stock. Iron tipped wooden ramrod. Consignor notes mention that a similar lock is pictured in Arms & Armor in Colonial America by Harold Peterson on page 34.

Condition: Good. Metal cleaned in the European fashion, with a steel gray patina with scattered pitting. Barrel shows flaws and possibly some welded repairs to fill pits or cracks. Iron furniture with similar patina. Stock fit is poor around buttplate tang, with chipping and worm holes. Probably an old restock of older metal parts.

EST $ 2000 - 3000...more

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British Iron Barreled Flintlock Blunderbuss by Reynolds

Lot # 24 (Sale Order: 24 of 458)      

1.66" flared muzzle, .82" at breech, pinned iron barrel. Bright finish, walnut stock, brass mountings. 6.75" long rounded lock with point at rear and bridled integral rounded iron pan with fence. Rounded, reinforced cock. Lock marked REYNOLDS. Barrel with British military proof marks at breech. Brass furniture with flat serpentine sideplate, buttplate, triggerguard and single rammer pipe. Stock with deep groove in forend suggesting use in a swivel yoke, rudimentary raised carvings at tail of lock and flat, and raised carved apron around barrel tang.

Condition: Good overall. Barrel with a thick, uncleaned brown patina with scattered light to moderate pitting and a moderately pitted bore. Mechanically functional. Lock may be an old, period-of-use replacement as it is is about .25" short of fitting the mortise perfectly. Brass furniture with deep, dark, untouched patina. Bottom 1" of buttplate broken and missing at toe. Wooden ramrod is not removable.

EST $ 1000 - 2000...more

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British Flintlock Elliptical Bore Swivel Gun

Lot # 25 (Sale Order: 25 of 458)      

3.25" x 2.75" swelled elliptical bore, 21.25" pin retained iron octagonal-to-round barrel. Bright finish, walnut stock, brass furniture, iron swivel mounting yoke, 37.75" overall length. Unmarked 7.5" rounded iron lock with round iron, bridled, fenced pan. Rounded swan neck cock. Raised carved apron around breech plug tang, brass reinforcement band near forend tip. Wooden ramrod.

Condition: Near fine overall. Iron barrel previously cleaned and now toning down with a thin brown patina. Lock mechanically functional, bore good with moderate pitting. Smooth mellow brass patina. Stock crisp with usual minor bumps and dings. Wooden ramrod broken.

EST $ 3000 - 5000...more

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