Author Topic: Burson, J.S. (Indiana) 100629-1  (Read 8758 times)

Offline nord

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Burson, J.S. (Indiana) 100629-1
« on: July 18, 2010, 04:06:56 PM »
Indiana Longrifle dated Nov 16, 1860 on the underside of the barrel. and stamped J S Burson Wabash Ind. on the top barrel flat. It is a cap lock with only a 30" barrel in .30 cal. It doesn't appear to be shortened but has a 1" octagon barrel and is very heavy even at that length. The the gun is well made and finished by obviously a good craftsmen. The two curious things about it is that it has neither a drum or a snail and the set trigger assembly is not screwed or bolted in. It is in reasonably good shape. The barrel is fairly pitted but it still has fairly deep rifling. The bore is in rougher condition just past the rear sight to the breach plug. There is a crack due to wood shrinkage just at the front of the lock.

The maker lived from 1820 to 1890 and was a miller by trade. He was a quaker and quite likely fairly well off.


My impression given the general heft of this rifle is that it was a "chunk gun" in its initial incarnation. I'd probably disagree about originality in that I suspect the barrel has been considerably shortened.

My observations don't detract from a nicely preserved example of a Civil War era rifle made for a sport that was very popular at that time. Features mentioned are interesting and attest to the evolution of the long rifle in one of its last forms.
Nice example with the incise carving at the wrist, good wood and the location and date on the gun. Guns with locations and dates always add appreciably to our knowledge of that maker's work. The gun has nice lines, forestock molding, and fancy finials on the guard extensions. The barrel has been shortened considerably, as evidenced by the 2nd ramrod pipe hanging out in "no man's land," rather than behind the muzzle. The butt end is the most important part for research purposes, and the gun provides an attractive butt with good information on the barrel.

Joshua Seth Burson was a well-known Indiana maker, and this rifle is a nice example of his work, even if it has been shortened.  It has pleasing architecture and is in nice overall condition.

« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 05:08:49 AM by Dennis Glazener »
In Memory of Lt. Catherine Hauptman Miller 6/1/21 - 10/1/00 & Capt. Raymond A. Miller 12/26/13 - 5/15/03...  They served proudly.