Author Topic: Harpers Ferry Muskets  (Read 3436 times)

Offline TMerkley

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Harpers Ferry Muskets
« on: December 04, 2011, 06:39:16 AM »
Does anyone know how long the 1795 pattern Harpers Ferry musket was produced.  I am doing a cleaning project of several historical pieces to include several muskets, rifles and pistols in a museum display at a local high school.
The 1795 pattern musket has a lock stamped 1815 Harpers Ferry.  There is also another musket similar in build without a stamp on the lock and slightly shorter than the other. 

 Other rifles and muskets include 1852 Springfield looks as if it was left in an arsenal for many years and never fired since proofed.  Several half-stock rifles that were made in the Lafayette, area by Butler and Iddings.  As well as later rifles used during the civil War.  Interesting collection.  One of the most intriguing artifacts is a muzzle of a 4" cannon that was used under General Braddock and is marked as 1755.  I am not sure who the involved people were who set up the display.  It has been on display for about 40 years.  These items have not seen any TLC since then.  Hope to keep them dry rotting. 

Any information would be greatly appreciated. 
Thanks Tom

Offline ptk1126

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2011, 03:44:43 PM »
Flayderman says 1815 was the last year of production (5,340 made)
for the Harper's Ferry Model 1795, but I have seen a photo of one
with an 1816 date on the lockplate.

All the best
Paul

Offline Howard

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2011, 05:07:03 PM »
Are these halfstocks Bixler & Iddings ?

Offline TMerkley

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2011, 05:31:05 PM »
Bixler and Iddings are half-stocks.  I have not touched them as of yet.  I will try to get some details if you need them.

Offline TMerkley

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2011, 05:34:55 PM »
Paul

Thank you for the information.  The musket will need some TLC.  Some one stuck a nail in to replace a pin for a barrel band.  Some of the wood is turning black as to be expected.  The muzzle is slightly bent on the edge.  Looks to have a birch stock. 

Offline TPH

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2011, 01:17:01 AM »
The so-called M1795 muskets (Charleville Pattern Muskets in period documents) were in production at both Harpers Ferry and Springfield as late as 1817.

References:

American Military Shoulder Arms: From the 1790s to the End of the Flintlock Period - George D. Moller

and

U.S. Military Flintlock Muskets, and Their Bayonets, the Early Years, 1790-1815 - Peter A. Schmidt
T.P. Hern

Offline TMerkley

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2011, 07:18:34 PM »
Thank you all for the great information.  This week when I go back I can probably have the information updated for the descrioptions.  Also,  my original post should have said, "Hope to keep them from dry-rotting"  Thanks Tom

Offline JCKelly

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2011, 02:16:13 AM »
The term "cleaning" strikes terror into the heart of every antique gun collector.

I wonder what you are planning to do to prevent dry rot?

It might be nice to clean off the rust with nothing more abrasive than a piece of bronze wool with your favorite penetrating oil (mine is Kroil)

Offline TMerkley

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Re: Harpers Ferry Muskets
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2011, 10:01:19 AM »
Most of these firearems are covered in a very thick layer of dust from remodeling.  So thick that some of them the wood itself could not be determined of the species.  We dusted lightly using paint brushes with a vaccum near the brush.  On the 1852 Springfield I applied with another paintbrush a 50/50 mixture of turpentine and Linseed oil to the stock so as to not dusurb the petina.  For the barrel I used 10w40 because it won't dry out.  I used neatsfoot oil on a very brittle holster that was for a small pistol. it was not even stampted US.  not sure if military or not.