Rare Sharps New Model 1859 "Coffee Mill" Carbine.

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  Lot #714  (Sale Order: 115 of 602) 
Sold for: $7,000.00 to onsite
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Serial # 62835 One of the scarcest and most sought after of all Civil War era Sharps carbines are those altered with the experimental grinding system set into the buttstock. All of these were experimental with work performed at the St. Louis Arsenal in 1864 to 1865. The carbine itself is a standard Model 1859 .52 caliber percussion with a 22" round barrel, oil finished walnut stocks, saddle ring bar on left side, military Lawrence patented rear sight with post and blade front. Left side of frame has 1848 patent date. All metal is a smooth grey patina with proper Sharps barrel stamp, minor freckling with some pitting on block and cartridge groove. The walnut stocks are very good, proud to metal, with no cracks or chips. No visible cartouche but "No. 2" stamped on right side of wrist and the top of comb. There is some minor abrasion on left side of stock. Fine bore and a perfect action. We have disassembled the mill attachment and the parts are stamped with the number "2" as well. The three milled attachments to include; the base (and both side plates) are made of brass and are similarly stamped with "2" on the inside. Every aspect of this carbine, with regards to the milling device have been inspected for purposeful manipulation with none to be noted. The "2" stamped on the parts and the stock are vintage, the aging and lack of cleaning clearly visable. This carbine was taken to the Denver Gun Show and was vetted by two of the most prominently known Sharps experts in the country, as well as several other antique gun experts. We are well aware of the controversy surrounding these carbines and it is a forgone conclusion that any Coffee Mill Sharps that were not in a collection prior to 1900 can only be vetted based on close inspection. According to historians, the Coffee Mill Parts remained at the St. Louis Armory until the 1920's, at which time, an employee took a number of them and utilizing original Sharps carbines, installed the original milling works at that time and sold them as such. We offer the following information. All of the milling brass parts are original and vintage except the crank handle which is a period replacement. The internal parts and the "2" stamp is also vintage. The aging of the parts is original. This carbine was consigned from an 85 year old gentleman from Massachusetts, whom he had three weapons in his possession, none of which he had any definitive information as to how long they had been in the family or where they were acquired. To include a Colt 1860 Army long flute and a Model 1849 Pocket Model revolver, both of which were manufactured prior to 1865. Therefore, this is either an original Coffee Mills Sharps as assembled in St. Louis circa 1864, or, at the very least, assembled by the St. Louis employee in the 1920's, with no way to determine which is correct. For the sake of accuracy, the Coffee Mill Sharps was an experimental model intended to grind corn, not coffee. Given the originality of the carbine, along with its aged parts and the circumstances surrounding its consignment, we feel this is an extremely fine example of one of the most talked about Civil War weapons ever manufactured. With no real track record on pricing, this is an extremely desirable martial arm that will find its own level. The documented Coffee Mill Sharps residing at Springfield Museum exhibits an iron grinding system, not brass as is the example. Since actual documented pre-1900 collection examples are virtually non-existent, we have no way to ascertain whether all were iron or brass, just that Springfield's example is iron.
Additional information per Wayne Gagner Springfield Research. A Springfield Armory manufactured carbine was manufactured long after the production period for the older model Sharps Carbine. The commander of the Springfield Arsenal in Springfield, Massachusetts authorized the manufacture of a Sharps Carbine with the coffee mill attachment on the stock.The parts were taken from an old stock of parts from Springfield Armory storage and assigned to a senior armorer personnel to be made in off hours and lunch time. The Armory commander approved the weapon and included the instructions that original parts with price of each part, and a survey of serial numbers was to be made. The serial number was chosen to be outside of any known serial numbers in all Armory records including the Master Armorer’s Notebook.

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This item is part of Firearms Day 2
 Saturday, Jul 25, 2015 | 9:00 AM  Eastern
 
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Rare Sharps New Model 1859 "Coffee Mill" Carbine.
Rare Sharps New Model 1859 "Coffee Mill" Carbine.
Lot number: 714
Seller: Morphy Auctions
Event: Firearms Day 2
Ends: Saturday, July 25 | 9:00 AM  Eastern

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