Author Topic: The Lehigh Indian Head  (Read 71430 times)

Offline jdm

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #75 on: November 14, 2014, 12:18:26 AM »
Eric,
 This  rifle has never been published before. I'll see if I can talk  Rob into posting a couple of pictures for me.   JIM
JIM

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #76 on: November 14, 2014, 12:55:49 AM »
JDM's patchbox

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 Eric Kettenburg

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #77 on: November 14, 2014, 02:13:49 PM »
Now THAT's a head!  Pretty darned cool, and it's the only 'head' engraved on a box that I've ever seen (speaking for myself only) that wasn't of the more folksy, funky Stoffel Long type of engraving/design.  Learn something every day!  Yours looks like a Kuntz, very professional.
Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #78 on: November 14, 2014, 03:17:29 PM »
My belief is that the image strongly represents Lady Liberty.  It's prominence on this patchbox as the only adornment on the rifle speaks proudly.  Eric, did you see the Stophel Long rifle with folky folky eagle on the cheek that sold earlier this year at Julia.  It gets my vote for best folk art rifle ever.  I will try to get permission to post pictures here, but it's in the catalog if you saved it.


« Last Edit: November 14, 2014, 03:26:41 PM by Shreckmeister »
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 Fullstock longrifle

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #79 on: November 14, 2014, 07:37:51 PM »
Very cool rifle!
Frank

Offline RAT

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #80 on: November 14, 2014, 10:48:45 PM »
It looks like that buttplate was on a different rifle at some point. There's a relief filed in the edge for a larger patchbox.
Bob

Offline JTR

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #81 on: November 15, 2014, 01:30:24 AM »
I like it too!
So, anything of interest on the cheek side?  ;D
John
John Robbins

Offline jdm

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #82 on: November 15, 2014, 02:10:21 AM »
Rat,  I was wondering if anyone would catch that. The but plate looks original to the rifle. I believe  the maker was going to put side plates on the patch box the changed his mind for some reason. The brass was so dark on this rifle when I got it you could hardly tell what was on the patch box.  I left everything in the black. At one time I sold this to buy another rifle then got it back several years later. The other owner cleaned up the brass a little.  There is also a worm in the patch box that screws onon the ramrod.

JTR   Just wood.
JIM

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #83 on: November 15, 2014, 03:34:27 AM »
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 JTR

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #84 on: November 15, 2014, 04:12:42 AM »
Sweet rifle none the less! Thanks for showing us some pictures!
John
John Robbins

Offline jdm

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #85 on: November 15, 2014, 08:10:09 AM »

Sweet rifle none the less! Thanks for showing us some pictures!
John

Thanks, This has always been one of my favorites. It's not fancy but it's one I couldn't let go. To me it's like some of the Tennessee rifles .Not real fancy but nice lines. They don't always need a lot of extras if they have good lines.

Rat, I always had it in my head that  the maker had cut the but plate that way for side plates. I got to thinking after I read your comments maybe your right. This butt plate I believe is original to the gun but maybe it's one he had( for what ever reason )so instead of making a new one he used it. I'm glad some of you enjoyed it  JIM
JIM

Offline jdm

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #86 on: November 15, 2014, 06:10:34 PM »
[quote author=Shreckmeister
My belief is that the image strongly represents Lady Liberty.  It's prominence on this patchbox as the only adornment on the rifle speaks proudly. 

Rob, I agree with you at least on this rifle. The face on here is very feminine . There is nothing Indian Head about it.
I've always been back and forth on the maker. When I first acquired it I felt it was Rupp. I have a Rupp signed J R on the patchbox. This rifle has the same incised lines around the tang and trigger guard. There is also similar carving around the rear ramrod pipe.  The patchbox sure looks like Jacob Kuntz though. I've seen other Kuntz rifles with this same architecture . In fact could be the same stock pattern.
JIM

Offline Buck

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #87 on: November 15, 2014, 06:24:29 PM »
Jim,
Great rifle, it would be nice to see it in person. Maybe in February?
Buck

cdscoot

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #88 on: March 08, 2018, 01:23:52 AM »
In doing some research on symbols of the American revolution in it's early stages I came across this in an article by the Metropolitan museum of art. Here is a link to the page....https://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/eagl/hd_eagl.htm.  Before the eagle was accepted as the American symbol  " a partially clothed indigenous woman wearing a feather headdress had served that function." Perhaps this will shed some light on those rifles with this symbol on them.


Offline rich pierce

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #89 on: March 08, 2018, 01:47:54 AM »
The article points to a painting named “Liberty” depicting a woman handing a cup to an eagle.  Reminds me more of the Statue of Liberty than the Lehigh figure.

https://www.google.com/search?q=edward+savage+painting+liberty&client=safari&hl=en-us&prmd=ismvn&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiyiczNpNvZAhUI74MKHTLpAl8Q_AUIESgB&biw=768&bih=922&dpr=2#imgrc=x2kIhZa3x2OfOM:
Andover, Vermont

cdscoot

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #90 on: March 08, 2018, 02:11:25 AM »
The author says that this symbol of the Indian female soon gave way to the to goddesslike representations. This says to me that the female Indian head was an earlier representation.

Offline Arcturus

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #91 on: March 08, 2018, 03:24:11 AM »
Earliest representations of an American liberty goddess were called "Columbia", and often a native female.  This gave way to a more classical ancient European liberty figure, in the Phrygian cap, the symbol of liberty.  There is no doubt in my mind that this is what is represented on the Lehigh rifles, not an Indian warrior.  A look at the images on the very first coins minted by the fledgling United States also makes it clear that this Lady Liberty in a liberty cap was a prominent and popular figure in American culture at the time these rifles were made. 
Jerry

Offline Bill Paton

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #92 on: March 08, 2018, 10:41:46 AM »
I am firmly in Arcturus’ camp. There is a wonderful pair of “Lady Liberty” statues, one in the Confederate Museum in Richmond beside the Davis Whitehouse, and the other in the American History Museum at the Smithsonian. Another Virginia flag in the Richmond museum shows a Greek “?” warrior in a Liberty cap standing over “Tyranny”. I think those Lehigh heads are sporting Liberty Caps and are intensely nationalistic symbols.

Bill Paton
Kentucky double rifle student
wapaton.sr@gmail.com

Offline spgordon

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #93 on: March 08, 2018, 05:27:10 PM »
I believe when this has been discussed before--perhaps even in this long thread (which I did not re-read in total)--it has been stated that these figures appear only on Lehigh County rifles. Any theories as to why this national symbol would appear only in rifles from this particular area? Or does it appear more widely?
Check out: The Lost Village of Christian's Spring
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And: The Earliest Moravian Work in the Mid-Atlantic: A Guide
https://www.moravianhistory.org/product-page/moravian-activity-in-the-mid-atlantic-guidebook

Offline Seth Isaacson

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #94 on: March 08, 2018, 05:57:10 PM »
When I see these "Lehigh Ladies" I have always identified them as a woman in a phrygian cap representing liberty or a fashionable woman with a ostrich feather in her hair. Possibly "Columbia" with a feather instead of a phrygian cap as is sometimes seen. See Tim Boone's picture for example. The cap has obvious historical significance to the American republic, and the latter was en vogue in the period.







« Last Edit: March 08, 2018, 06:09:22 PM by The Rambling Historian »
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Offline Eric Kettenburg

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #95 on: March 08, 2018, 06:23:39 PM »
Scott they are primarily found on rifles of the Northampton Co. area, however also there is some bleed-over into eastern Berks Co. although most (if not all) of what is found in eastern Berks is much more 'folky' or primitive.  Also the only times I've seen such a head with what is clearly a feather - as opposed to a cap - have been on rifles of eastern Berks.

I have long felt that the origins of this symbol being used upon Northampton rifles are somehow tied to the fact that a fairly substantial, busy armory was established in Allentown ca. 1777-1779, and the use of this symbol was in some way a commemoration of Revolutionary spirit.  Thus far, the earliest I have seen are upon arms signed by or otherwise attributed to the Moll family.  John Sr. was long-established in Allentown by the time the War broke out, and was present during the time the armory was in operation although whether he worked directly for Cowell/Tyler or aided the effort in his own shop - or some combination of the two - is still a mystery.  I do believe he was the progenitor of this symbol being used on arms, and because I also believe he trained at least some of the others that utilized it, I think it somehow was being used after the War as something of a commemorative "brand."
Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline wmrike

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #96 on: March 08, 2018, 07:25:56 PM »
If in fact it was a talisman as the original post suggested, it doesn't necessarily follow that it would be a style element up and down the length of the frontier, even though the length of English-influenced settlement everywhere was subject to Indian attack.

What we are discussing is a style element, a fashion statement.  It was what was done in a time, in a place, to the dictates of a model or design, for whatever reason.  Just as other design elements of the Pennsylvania rifle showed relatively little bleedover across even (by today's standards) short distances. it would be presumptuous of us to think that a Lehigh motif would be universally incorporated.

Offline Majorjoel

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #97 on: March 08, 2018, 10:00:03 PM »
I have often thought that the Lehigh made rifles had a more French influence than a Germanic influence.

These female figures have a lot of French style to them IMHO.
Joel Hall

Offline Eric Kettenburg

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #98 on: March 08, 2018, 10:17:59 PM »
Not a lady liberty head, but given the evacuation of Philadelphia and the manner in which Northampton Co. for a brief period of time was absolutely "hopping" with people, evacuees and Revolutionary spirit, some might find this interesting.  It sits smack dab in the middle of the period the armories were going fill steam ahead in Allentown (i.e., Northampton Town):









Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline Eric Kettenburg

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Re: The Lehigh Indian Head
« Reply #99 on: March 10, 2018, 02:29:46 AM »
This one is pretty obviously a feather - probably upper Bucks Co. ca. late 1770s-1780s:







Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!