Trying to find out what gun I just inherited

Discussion in 'Blackpowder & Musket' started by jeezy123, Jul 9, 2014.

  1. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    Hi guys,

    Pretty new here. I'm sure you guys get threads like this all the time but I recently was given a rifle that belonged to my great great.. great grandfather. I've done quit a bit of research but am having a hard time figuring out what rifle it is.. If anyone could help ID it I'd really appreciate it! There are no markings stamps or numbers anywhere. It kinda looks like a Hawkins fr what I've found.. any ideas?

    Thanks in advanced!
     

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  2. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

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    Are there holes in the bottom of the barrel where loops would be mounted for the ram rod to go through? It does look a lot like my Hawken. But mine is a reproduction.
     

  3. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    Unfortunately no, just the hole for it to go into. That's really the only difference I see between other hawkens and this rifle.. aside from some actually saying Hawkins on it.
     
  4. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    Looks like a reproduction Hawken`s rifle to me..........Pull the barrel off & look on the bottom of barrel for markings !..............
     
  5. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    As far as I understand it it's an original. I have an old black and white of my great great great gramps holding it on his horse. Not very educated on black powder rifles so I guess you never know. I disassembled it and checked every inch of it for any kind of markings. Not a thing on the bottom of the barrel :\
     
  6. MoreAltitude

    MoreAltitude New Member

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    As others said check underside of barrel for marks. Also, check for markings on your lock for the maker of that as well. With those 2 pieces of info you'll be able to hopefully research it further.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2014
  7. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    Thanks for the reply guys! While there is nothing under the barrel.. It may not be much to go on but I did find something on the back of the lock. A stamp of the number 2. I'll continue my research
     
  8. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    Looks like i found another stamp on the back of the lock! After a good cleaning I found what looks like part of a D and a definitive L! Due to wear I can't tell for sure if it's a D but it looks to be. Thanks again guys
     
  9. BillM

    BillM Active Member Supporter

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    Look at that barrel REALLY hard--some times the markings were very shallow. If there are no marks,
    it's entirely possible it's a gun produced by a local gunsmith, and you will never know which one.
    They built them literally out of a "lock, stock and barrel". Locks were commonly purchased or
    re-purposed from an older gun. Yours is a bit unusual with that back action lock---the lock could
    have come from an old shotgun--or maybe the smith just liked that style. Darned thing could date anywhere
    from the early 1800's to yesterday. If you can date the picture of your great great Grandfather holding it, it would
    be safe to say it's at least that old.
     
  10. fa35jsf

    fa35jsf New Member

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    Lots of up close, in focus, high resolution pictures can go a long way. Time to break out the camera and give it a close up.
     
  11. hiwall

    hiwall Active Member

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    A large number of the original old ones had no markings and were often made by local craftsmen. It is likely if this is old that you will never find who or when it was made.
     
  12. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    This is a correct statement & if you have a picture of it that far back it may very well be an original, hang on to it & cherish it. Mount it along with the picture, hang her up & be proud of her !..................
     
  13. JonM

    JonM Moderator

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    if it is old dont shoot it. even if its a new repro in that condition the base of the barrel where the powder sits is almost certainly compromised by rust base solely on looking at the outside of the barrel. if the previous owner did not clean and maintain the outside the insides are going to be muuuuuch worse.

    black powder guns dont kaboom along the barrel they kaboom at the base where your face is at the lockwork.
     
  14. willshoum

    willshoum New Member

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    What a Jewel, My cousin has a later model. Bring that to a musem that has old firearms, as for markings, the FBI can bring back to life the etchings that are worn out. Your looking at one of the first ever produced if its as old as you say it is..................Maybe the original, then copied and set forth the hawkins legend. ;)
     
  15. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    Thanks for the replies guys! A lot of great advice! It is definitely not operable so I certainly won't be shooting it. I'll have better pics when I get it reassembled. Here's the lock and the only marking it really has. You can see the 2 and the L but just ad smidgen of what's possible a letter before the L. Thanks again guys!
     

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  16. willshoum

    willshoum New Member

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    Antique.............

    Def. not a repo. ,,,,,,,,,,Don't ruin the screws or anything for that matter. AND DON""T REFURBISH...........................The FBI can raise those letters. Or there may be some books still left around to give you an idea of the year and maker. Do more research and what ever you do. DON"T RUIN THE ORIGINAL AS IS FINISH.................................
     
  17. coastie

    coastie New Member

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    Wow! Looks as if there are markings in the lock plate.
    Great photo!
    Vinegar wash may allow some image.
    Wash really well after, though.
    Check with infrared and UV light with the above wash.
    Light heat with the vinegar--just winging it here..
    might be worth a try.
    E-mail a museum.
    Good luck.
     
  18. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    It is definitely not a Hawken, not with a back action lock and single barrel key. It looks to have been a half stock trade rifle but the barrel has been whacked off really short.
     
  19. jeezy123

    jeezy123 New Member

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    Definitely won't be messing with the finish. I guess emailing a museum will be my best bet. While I'd love to know where and when it came from, I'd be satisfied with just knowing what kind of rifle it is haha
     
  20. BillM

    BillM Active Member Supporter

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    Are the nose cap and buttplate pewter? They sort of have that look.

    You might want to check and see if it is loaded. Quite a few old muzzleloaders
    were kept with a charge in them. Drop the ramrod or a dowel down the barrel,
    note where it stops. Lay the rod on the outside and see how deep it went in the bore.