Author Topic: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction  (Read 2075 times)

Offline Shreckmeister

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Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2019, 09:00:53 PM »
I'm curious.  How accurate were the NE rifles compared to PA Longrifles?  Anyone have experience shooting them?
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline rich pierce

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2019, 11:23:55 PM »
I'm curious.  How accurate were the NE rifles compared to PA Longrifles?  Anyone have experience shooting them?

I hear they could not hit a darn thing in Pennsylvania from Massachusetts!   ;D
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Offline smart dog

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2019, 12:28:17 AM »
Hi Shreckmeister,
I don't know how well those early NE rifles shot. I personally don't care for the feel or balance of the originals I've handled.  However, I've only shot a modern version of one.  That said, by the Civil War New England rifle makers like Wesson and Brockway, made some of the most accurate muzzleloaders ever built and one of the most active areas of competitive long range target shooting was Vernon, Vermont.

dave 
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Offline burnt

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2019, 01:40:41 AM »
Is the trigger pin dislodged because of that break thru the wrist and lock panel?

Kevin
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Online Eric Kettenburg

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2019, 02:07:26 AM »
I can only assume this was made right from the get-go as a target gun because I see no provision for a rammer - no rod pipes?
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Offline lexington1

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2019, 12:29:51 AM »
I'm curious.  How accurate were the NE rifles compared to PA Longrifles?  Anyone have experience shooting them?

When I was younger I had a Lane and Reed NE rifle that I shot quite a bit. It shot pretty well and had decent fit and feel to it. Accuracy I'm sure depended on who made the barrel, load used, etc.  It varied greatly, among makers from all regions. Kind of like today :P

« Last Edit: February 11, 2019, 04:38:23 AM by Ky-Flinter »

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2019, 08:12:46 PM »
Most of them I have seen are of a larger caliber 56 or more.  Someone led me to believe most of them were made for militia members.  Any truth to that?
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2019, 01:03:55 PM »
When I was shooting, my favorite flintlock was a Henry Pratt rifle probably made c. 1816-1820. It shot consistently well even though the original bore was a little rough. One year, I won the RI State championship with that rifle (keeping in mind that there aren't many competitors in RI). It was the only original rifle being shot in that match. They do tend to be a little muzzle heavy, which I like. But, I have no experience with Pennsylvania rifles so I'm unable to make any objective comparison.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2019, 02:30:16 PM »
Most of them I have seen are of a larger caliber 56 or more.  Someone led me to believe most of them were made for militia members.  Any truth to that?

That was the late Bill Guthman's theory and it is one I agree with. I think that practically all of the flintlock rifles, and some of the very early percussion rifles were made for militia rifle companies (which were quite popular in New England) or for individual members of those companies. I've had two with rifle company numbers on them and have seen half a dozen more.

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2019, 03:27:08 PM »
I wonder if there are militia company records available? My rifle has the name GW Smith nicely engraved on the patch box. It might be worth researching. Too bad the last name is so common
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2019, 08:45:19 PM »
The Militia rosters survive. When I saw them, they were still tied in bundles as stored in the Adjutant General's office. I doubt they had ever been unwrapped or read since they were used in 1912. There is a printed book, The Massachusetts Volunteer Militia in the War of 1812, printed in 1912 on the centennial of the war. It is quite rare but I do have a copy. I'm in England at the moment but in a few weeks, I will be home and able to look the name up.

The book includes the enrolled militia as well as the volunteer militia so it is comprehensive. If the name is listed, it will also include what unit he belonged to. If the man did not serve in the War of 1812, he won't be there but my guess is that most militiamen of the 1812 period were still in the militia five or ten years later.

jp
« Last Edit: February 20, 2019, 08:48:33 PM by JV Puleo »

Offline Skirmisher

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2019, 03:23:02 AM »
I couldn't help noticing the European-style poly groove rifling in the NE rifle.  I have a c. 1839 sidelock Nicanor Kendall (Windsor, VT) rifle with that same rifling form, and it shoots very well.  Must have been a New England thing.

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2019, 06:59:33 PM »
Now that's exciting news.  I had no idea there would still be records, but I should have known.  Our county has militia records stored away that they have agreed to put in
our historical museum right now they side in a third floor abandoned jail cell.  I'll anxiously await to hear what you might find.  Thanks Joe.

The Militia rosters survive. When I saw them, they were still tied in bundles as stored in the Adjutant General's office. I doubt they had ever been unwrapped or read since they were used in 1912. There is a printed book, The Massachusetts Volunteer Militia in the War of 1812, printed in 1912 on the centennial of the war. It is quite rare but I do have a copy. I'm in England at the moment but in a few weeks, I will be home and able to look the name up.

The book includes the enrolled militia as well as the volunteer militia so it is comprehensive. If the name is listed, it will also include what unit he belonged to. If the man did not serve in the War of 1812, he won't be there but my guess is that most militiamen of the 1812 period were still in the militia five or ten years later.

jp
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2019, 05:38:49 AM »
I just remembered this when I saw the book...

Needless to say, there were a lot of Smith's but only one has the initials "G.W." - George W. Smith. There are two others with the first initial "G" - Gilman Smith and Glisson Smith. Those two names are so unusual that I'd try looking them up via Ancestry to see if you can find a middle initial. If neither had a middle name that began with W, I'd say you have about an 80% chance of having found your guy.

George W. Smith is shown as a private in "Sgt. Rouse's Guard from Capt. A. Green's Company, Lt. Colonel A. Birney's Regt." with service at Boston and vicinity in November of 1814.

Of course, he may not have owned the rifle during the War of 1812. He was a private so he may have been fairly young. Post some photos of the rifle and I may be able to help you date it - though with so little difference in NE rifles that is often impossible. I can only date my Pratt rifle because of the lock marking which must post-date 1816. You'd also want to look for Birney's Regt to see if it had a Rifle Company. All Massachusetts militia regiments had a light company - it could be either light infantry armed with muskets or a rifle company.

Cheers,

Joe Puleo

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #15 on: March 23, 2019, 05:55:23 AM »
I looked a little further and found that the book I got this information from is now online - free. Personally, I'd rather have the book but I bought that about 40 years ago and since then have only seen one or two others so online is a really good option. I'll see if I can attach the link...

Well--- I can't. I couldn't post a photo recently too. If you send me a PM Ill try to attach the PDF to that.

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #16 on: March 23, 2019, 03:44:20 PM »
Iím very embarrassed but going to admit my error. The rifle is signed G W Jones not Smith. Itís Been So long since I had it out that I got it wrong.  I really apologize for the goose chase. I posted the rifle in the antique forum under Silas Allen.  that post is still searchable. I tried to copy and paste a link here but I canít. Iíll send you a PM Joe.
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline Shreckmeister

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Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #18 on: March 23, 2019, 06:03:38 PM »
I'm in the office now but I'll look it up again when I get home.
Does it say anything on the lock and, if so, what? The lock looks very much like that on my Pratt rifle and if it says "Allport late with Ketland & Co." it is post-1816. Of course, all the locks were made in the Birmingham trade so the markings usually reflect a retailer or wholesaler - they rarely give precise dating information.

That's a nice NE rifle....

jp

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2019, 03:23:14 AM »
I believe it is Allport Ketland & Co
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #20 on: March 24, 2019, 03:56:16 AM »
James Allport was the partner of William Ketland. When William K died in 1804 he assumed management of W. Ketland & Co. James Allport fell sick not much later and effective control was taken by his son, William. As long as James was alive, William A ran the company. When James died, in 1816, the partnership automatically dissolved and William set up in business under his own name - hence the unusual marking "Late with Ketland & Co." because the Allports were well known in the trade but not under their own name.

There were 3 men named Jones with the first initial "G" in the Massachusetts militia... George Jones, Galen Jones and Gardner Jones. No middle initial is listed for any of them but it is likely they had middle names so it would be worth some research to find out if any did have all 3 initials as on the rifle.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2019, 04:11:16 AM by JV Puleo »

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #21 on: March 24, 2019, 03:55:39 PM »
Thank you for sharing that info Joe. Do you know when the locks ceased to be marked Allport late?
I think Iíll start with George given how many folks named their children after the Pres in that period and go from there. Do the records show what towns they were from?
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #22 on: March 24, 2019, 04:04:54 PM »
One possible



Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add 'within the limits of the law' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #23 on: March 24, 2019, 06:06:57 PM »
That is a page from the book I have so we are literally "on the same page".
« Last Edit: March 24, 2019, 06:14:25 PM by JV Puleo »

Offline JV Puleo

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Re: Pretty nice New England rifle for auction
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2019, 06:11:30 PM »
As to the terminal date for William Allport - I probably have that but it doesn't come to mind immediately. He was obviously quite close to William Ketland because one of his sons was named William Ketland Allport. That son died young but another son was a successful early railroad engineer and was eventually knighted as Sir Joseph Allport.

The Allports came from the same village as the Ketlands. I suspect they had known each other their entire lives.