Author Topic: Bogle Rifles  (Read 21021 times)

longhunter2

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Bogle Rifles
« on: March 13, 2012, 07:19:44 PM »
Can anyone advise me on a good source for information and photos regarding the gunmaker Joseph Bogle, or any other makers who may have produced rifles of a similar time period and structure. I've seen photos of Gillespie and Bean rifles as examples of southern mountain rifles, but they were not made as early as Bogle, correct? I am starting a rifle that I intend to be of that same school, an early southern rifle. Any help would be appreciated.

Offline mr. no gold

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2012, 07:43:47 PM »
You would do well to get in touch with Shelby Gallien, Mel Hankla, Earl Lanning, or any of the House Brothers. They are the mainline experts as far as I know on the grand Kentucky guns and their makers.
Dick

Offline Hurricane ( of Virginia)

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2012, 07:44:37 PM »
There is a signed Jos Bogle rifle in our Museum.

http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?topic=11592.0

Hurricane

Offline rich pierce

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2012, 10:36:43 PM »
And a fine rifle it is.  It's got "it" in spades for me.
St. Louis, Missouri

Offline Sequatchie Rifle

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2012, 03:51:06 AM »
Joseph Bogle, Jr., died in Blount County, Tennessee on April 1, 1811 (or 1814).   The inventory for his estate shows that one rifle gun, including a shot bag, was sold to Andrew Caswell for $15.00.  The estate also included four slaves:  a woman, one boy and two girls.  It appears that Bogle earned his living primarily as a farmer.  He may have instructed his nephew and namesake, Joseph Bogle (1778-1853) in the gunsmith trade and himself retired from gunmaking some years before his death.   

Andrew Caswell is my 5th great grandfather.
I believe he lived on Boyd's Creek in Sevier County, TN.
"We fight not for glory, nor riches nor honors, but for freedom alone, which no good man gives up except with his life.” Declaration of Arbroath, 1320

Offline WElliott

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2012, 06:09:46 AM »
Longhunter 2, to see such rifles up close, you should consider coming to the Tennessee Kentucky Rifle Show on April 20-21.  See the announcements forum or email me for more information. 
Wayne Elliott

Offline Eric Krewson

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2012, 04:39:23 PM »
The current Joe Bogle with his great, great(forgot how may greats) grandfathers rifle at the Norris show.



Joe has built a couple of "Bogle" rifles since the show. There is a complete drawing available that was copied from the Bogle rifle, the drawing is not called the "Bogle" rifle. Joe has the drawing, I will check with him to see what is is listed under and where he got it. 

coutios

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2012, 05:25:01 PM »
Head over to  kentuckylongrifles.com    Great photos of a Bogle rifle plus many others......

Regards
Dave

Offline Eric Krewson

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2012, 10:14:14 PM »
I called Joe, he said the Virginia rifle drawing from the Log Cabin shop is very close to the Bogle rifle.

Offline WElliott

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2012, 11:36:58 PM »
If I am not mistaken, that "Virginia" rifle drawing was actually done from the Bogle rifle before research showed that Joseph Bogle worked in Tennessee from the mid 1780s on.  So it would be a very good drawing to use to build a "Bogle rifle."
Wayne Elliott

Offline G-Man

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2012, 03:59:25 PM »
Wayne - you are correct - the Bogle rifle is the rifle that Ron Borron did the drawing of and Myron copied the hardware for.  There are strong characteristics shared with some Virginia work - John Davidson in particular.  There are actually two versions of the drawing floating around - Ron's first one has the original lock and the original drop in the buttstock.  I believe he did a second version of the drawing with a Durs Egg lock and a little less drop to update the plans a bit to suit modern builders/shooters.   However, in the times I have handled the original I never noticed that it was difficult to shoulder - seemed like it held really well actually.

Myron always said that he regretted not copying the triggers for that rifle - they are very unique.

Jerry Noble's Volume 3 (I think) shows at least one - maybe two - other Bogle attributed rifles.  Wayne - correct me if I am wrong, as I am not positive if these are attributed to the same Jos Bogle maker of the McTeer rifle, or the later nephew.  I also know of one other in a private collection.  All have similar architecture and mounts.  Bogle died in 1811, and there is little evidence that he was making rifles in the latter years of his life, so that puts a firm end date on his rifles and suggests that the rifles we have to examine might date as early as the 1790s.  

Some other early Tennessee rifles with a similar early feel include some of the early work of John Bull - such as the "John Bull for Isaac Guess rifle; or the Stephen Crain rilfe, also retains a similar early feel. As does this rifle (not necessarily from TN - Virginia and North Carolina have also nbeen suggested):

http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?topic=14832.0

The Bogle rifle does predate surviving examples of what most think of as the classic Tennessee “Bean” style rifles referred to  referred to in the first post.   In addition to timeframes, we need to keep in mind that the Bean rifles were from a slightly different area of the Tennessee mountains - up in the corner closer to where TN/ VA and NC meet, whereas Bogle worked over on the west side of the Smokies - more than 50 miles southwest of the "upper east Tennessee area.

Russell Bean appears to have been working in East Tennessee by the late 1780s - by the time Joseph Bogle arrived in what is now Blount County.  What Russell’s rifles made in that era looked like we do not know.  So we really don't know how early the characteristics of the "Bean" style mountain rifle started to appear.   It is tempting to assume that there was a clean orderly evolution from the more “conventional” looking rifles - like the Bogle -  that exhibit characteristics traceable to the documented gunmaking styles brought in from east of the mountains - to the later, more highly stylized rifles we associate with the Bean family and other moutain gunsmiths.  While it is possible that pieces like the Bogle rifle reflect a first stage in the transition from the eastern styles brought into the region in the 18th century toward what we think of as the later mountain rifle, we should also consider the possibility that the Beans and other early mountain gunmakers might have already established the beginnings of a general style that was evolving in parallel to, and separate from the general styles we see on guns from the more well documeted gunmaking areas in the 1780s – rather than directly from them.  So it is possible that even some of the early gunmakers like Joseph Bogle were influenced by a growing local gunsmith style and customer preference that was already there when they arrived, and adapted their work to suit.

GM
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 04:25:31 PM by G-Man »

Offline WElliott

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2012, 06:21:27 AM »
Guy, as always, you are right on.  In my opinion, one or more of the "other" rifles attributed to Joseph Bogle were probably made by his nephew, Joseph.  I think the early Jos. Bogle rifle shows very much of Virginia influence, which leads me to believe that it was made within a few years after Bogle left Virginia and moved to Tennessee (the mid 1780s). As you point out, he died in 1811 so he may have made rifles in Tennessee for 20 years, if that.

You are quite right that the classic East Tennessee rifles were made east of where Bogle worked and may have evolved from a different tradition than Bogle and other early rifles made to the west of the Smokies.  I wonder if the classic long, slender "Bean" type mountain rifle owes more to the English style, perhaps were influenced by early imports into the Carolinas, as opposed to the Germanic tradition which came out of Pennsylvania down the Valley of Virginia (and which tradition may have influenced Bogle).  The foregoing speculation and two dollars won't even buy a decent cup of coffee today.   :)
« Last Edit: March 16, 2012, 05:11:27 PM by WElliott »
Wayne Elliott

longhunter2

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2012, 11:41:46 AM »
Eric, you mentioned drawings from the Log Cabin shop. Their website lists two separate Southern Originals print sets, the Southern Mountain Flint Rifle set, and the Hershel House Virginia Rifle print. Do you have any idea which set contains the drawings that Joe would be referring to? Also, am I mistaken in my understanding here, but did WElliot suggest that Bogle may have had a Germanic influence? And lastly, are there any good sources out there that might outline the differences between various styles that came from Virginia, Tennessee, and other southern localities and their influence?
« Last Edit: March 16, 2012, 11:46:25 AM by longhunter2 »

Offline G-Man

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2012, 03:21:45 PM »
The print of the Bogle rifle is in the "Southern Originals" set.  There are actually 3 sets of those - I think the Bogle is in Set 1(?)  It is, as discussed, described as an early Virginia pattern, but is in fact teh Bogle rifle that appears on this website in the virtual museum.  The House pattern is a drawing of one of Hershel House's contemporary rifles made in the 1980s.

There is a lot of information out there on the various southern longrifle styles - what is hard to find is an overview that sorts things out over a wide range of timeframes and areas  - as we often tend to use the term "southern" sort of generically and it can cover dozens of regions and a 150 year span. There are a number of good examples in the virtual museum - which is nice because it is free - but if you are just delving into the topic it helps to have a little guidance.  PM me or one of the other folks on here and we can help get you started. 

As a start, here are some suggestions on books:

Rifles of Colonial America Volume II (Shumway) - has some early southern rifles from the pre-1800 era.
 
North Carolina Schools of Longrifles (Ivey) - has hundreds of rifles made in the North Carolina Piedmont and Mountains, including lots of iron mounted guns

Jerry Nobles Notes on Southern Longrifles (Volumes 1-4), I would recommend Volumes 1 and 2

Wayne Elliot's "Gunamkers of Georgia"

Dennis Glazener's "The Gillespie Gunamkers of East Fork North Carolina"

Dr. James Whisker's books "Gunmakers of Virginia", and "Longrifles of Virginia"

There are more - and as I said, lots of good ones that are not in many of the books are shown in the Virtual Museum here.

Good luck
Guy

Offline WElliott

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #14 on: March 16, 2012, 05:29:30 PM »
longhunter2, I was merely musing about the influence on the Germanic vs. English traditions on Southern guns.  My intent is merely to encourage the consideration of geographic and migratory patterns which may give some clue to influence of earlier traditions.  It makes sense to me that gunsmiths who migrated into the South during the developing period (such as Bogle and other Revolutionary veterans who settled in East Tennessee immediately after the War) brought with them the traditions which they had been trained in.  Their early work in their new locale, assuming they were working independently of another's shop, surely showed that influence. After some years in the new locale, they may well have adapted their style to find favor with local customers.  So gunsmiths who migrated into Tennessee from the Carolinas would have brought with them a different tradition and style than those who migrated down from Pennsylvania and Virginia.  As the two influenced the other and were both influenced by local customer demand, unique local architecture and furniture began to emerge. 
Wayne Elliott

longhunter2

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #15 on: March 17, 2012, 12:46:04 PM »
Just out of curiousity: Any idea how many known Bogle rifles still exist today? I've also noticed that he produced rifles with both the spade-shaped patchbox and the banana style. Any thoughts on what reason one patchbox might be more appropriate to use than the other?

Offline WElliott

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2012, 04:55:58 PM »
The only rifle extant that we can say with certainty was produced by Joseph Bogle (Jr.) (b. Penna. 1759, died TN 1811), is the signed rifle you will see in the ALR Library.  I have seen one unsigned rifle which may be by him, and it has the spade-type patchbox.  The different style patchboxes are not a matter of being "appropriate", but a matter of style. Either lid simply covers a cavity in the stock intended to hold greased patches and, sometimes, an extra flint or a jag. 
Wayne Elliott

Offline longcruise

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #17 on: March 20, 2012, 02:44:45 AM »
There is this one on American Historic Services   http://americanhistoricservices.com/html/jos_bogle.html

I'm certainly not qualified to say whether it is an actual Bogle.  Maybe the same one that is in the ALR museum??
Mike Lee

Offline WElliott

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #18 on: March 20, 2012, 05:27:34 AM »
Longcruise, the rifle pictured on American Historic Services and in the ALR Library, are the same rifle.  The only known, signed Jos. Bogle. 
Wayne Elliott

longhunter2

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #19 on: March 20, 2012, 05:23:41 PM »
Is the Bogle held in a museum somewhere for public viewing, or is it part of someone's private collection? On a side note, unfortunately, I was looking at the stock, barrel, and other hardware that I had bought at Friendship for this project. At the time I was putting it all together, I didn't realize that I was planning for a rifle in the wrong time period that I was looking for. I bought a walnut southern mountain stock from pecatonica, and realized that the narrow, sweeping shape of the butt was not the Bogle style I was looking for, but rather a much later design. I found the trigger guard and trigger assembly to be a "classic" southern look, not unlike the Bean or Soddy-Daisy schools. Although, the lock seems to be correct for a "Bogle." Any advise on where to go from here? Should I continue to recreate what many call the "classic" southern rifle and do it right the next time, or perhaps attempt to make the rifle into somewhat of a evolution from the Virginia style to the Tennessee with hardware from both eras? That's what I get for not doing my research.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2012, 05:42:15 PM by longhunter2 »

Offline G-Man

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #20 on: March 20, 2012, 08:27:03 PM »
The Bogle rifle retains strong ties in its architecture and mounts to earlier guns made east of the mountains, prior to about 1810.

The Pecatonica southern mountain style would be more suited to a rifle of the 1820-40 timeframe.  You can still made a good looking rifle from it, just subtantially different feel from the Bogle rifle.

If it were me, I would sort of do one or the other, but that is just preference.  The one thing you can say about the mountain rifles is that no two are exactly alike, and some makers retained early forms of hardware on later guns.  But if I really wanted to build a Bogle style rifle I would start with pattern with a straight comb and toe.  Some of the Golden Age era Lancaster and Maryland stock patterns are actually pretty close.  For example, I have a Knob Mountain Fordney pattern stock that I am going to use for a Bogle style rifle soon.  

Myron Carlson made hardware copied from the Bogle rifle but he passed away several years ago. You could make the hardware, or there are some here on this board who will forge hardware.  Or if you want to, go with steel castings (keep in mind that in that era the hardware would have been formed by forging and joining multiple (usually) pieces, rather than cast.  That being said, that big massive "Early Virginia" cast guard that many of the suppliers sell has about the same bow and grip rail size  as the guard on the original Bogle, you would just need to do some filing to slim the finials and thin the metal down to be closer to the original, and if you could heat and do some bending ot put more curve in the grip rail.  

The Bogle is not on display in any museum but has been on display at the CLA show in Lexington, and at the Norris Tennessee show, many times.  These shows are the best places I have found to view original rifles.

Guy
« Last Edit: March 20, 2012, 08:27:43 PM by G-Man »

Online Dennis Glazener

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #21 on: March 20, 2012, 08:36:25 PM »
Quote
These shows are the best places I have found to view original rifles.
Guy is correct about viewing original rifles at these shows and there is one coming up here in VA March 31-April 1, 2012. We won't see the Bogle rifle but last year we had the Kleete rifle and lots of other early rifles.

We will be having a special display "Fine Iron in Virginia" which will have some nice early iron mounted flintlocks from Virginia. Several of these rifles are shown in some of the Virginia books but most have not been displayed in recent years. There also will be another great display of Virginia Rifles and Wallace Gusler will have a display of Indian artifacts that I know you would enjoy seeing.

More information here :http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?topic=17291.0 all ALR members are invited to attend the show.

Almost forgot, The new Pennsylvania “Horns of the Trade” - Screw-tip Powder Horns and Their Architecture, by Arthur J. DeCamp will be on sale (save shipping costs) ( http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?topic=20507.0 ) will be available for sale at this show.

Dennis
« Last Edit: March 20, 2012, 08:40:23 PM by Dennis Glazener »
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longhunter2

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #22 on: March 23, 2012, 05:32:48 PM »
Is anyone familiar enough with Pecatonica to advise which of their stocks would be better suited for a Bogle-esque inspiration?

Offline G-Man

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #23 on: March 23, 2012, 05:56:01 PM »
The original has a signficant amount of drop and unlike many later Tennessee rifles it has a fairly long wrist section.  

For a stock pattern, it depends on how wide you want to make the butt, how much drop you want and how much wood you want to remove.  The dimensions of the original are posted in the virtual museum and you can compare them to those on Pecatonica's site.  

If it were me I would consider  their J Armstrong (although a bit narrower in the butt than the original) or their North Carolina pattern.  You can see the profiles of these  stocks on their website and compare them to the photos in the virtual museum.  Go with one that has enough wood to allow you to remove some and shape appropriate.  Consider the shape and position of the cheekpiece too.  You will want to inlet your own lock and hardware unless they can do inletting for an appropriate English style lock - I would not want to use the earlier Germanic Siler style lock for this type of rifle.  Nothing against Silers -great locks - but they are very different from the style on this original.

If you are not making your own hardware, the buttplate will be a tough match.  It has a fairly pronounced heel and is a it wider and taller than the later Tennessee style castings that are out there.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2012, 05:57:21 PM by G-Man »

Offline Eric Krewson

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Re: Bogle Rifles
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2012, 04:15:56 PM »
The current Joe Bogle is forging his own furniture and doing a mighty fine job of it considering he started with a homemade BBQ grill forge, a piece of railroad track and a pile of scrap metal 2 years ago.
 
Joe has made 3 or 4 Bogle rifles in the past two years, both flint and percussion. Pretty sure David Keck precarved Joe's last rifle so he may have a pattern that is pretty close.

Here is a picture of Joe's first "Bogle" rifle that shows the mounts he forged.