Author Topic: Morrison (Attributed & Unsigned) 110324-1  (Read 5133 times)

Offline nord

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Morrison (Attributed & Unsigned) 110324-1
« on: May 02, 2011, 07:02:30 PM »


Has anyone seen this type of "animalistic" engraved scenes on a Morrison rifle before? I've seen a couple of late New York and Ohio pieces with similar engraving, but not on a Morrison rifle.  Seems out of place to me, but then I don't study these  particular rifles. If similar engraving hasn't been seen on a Morrison rifle before, wonder if this rifle might have been decorated sometime after it was made.

My Morrison (081228-1) is so similar to this rifle that they could almost be twins. Inlays are correct, but you could well be correct about the engraving being done sometime after the gun was made. Though I've never seen a Morrison decorated with this motif, I find it rather attractive.

By the way... This gun found it way to Australia and was just recently repatriated.
These sidelocks are as enigmatic as the football shaped sideplate.  They show up on most makers' guns, but both are associated with Morrison.  I suspect that maybe a blacksmith made these in the Milton area, but it is quite possible that Morrison or his shop made them.  Maybe they were made in New Berlin, which was more of an industrial hub at the time, but I have a feeling that they have a closer tie to up the river in Milton based on the prevalence on Morrison rifles.  I noticed that this sidelock lacks the curly-que, much like the on the museum but many of these have a curled piece of iron where the hammer strikes the nipple.  I suspect that caught fabric and the owner's knocked many of these off with a file.  I like them--they are a neat feature, but some people are not big fans.  I would not rule this out as a southern tier New York or northern tier Pennsylvania rifle, but a shot of the initials, if any, would be helpful.

If memory serves me correctly you were the one who questioned the lack of a signature on my Morrison at Lewisburg three seasons ago... And, indeed, the rifle is actually signed! A very light script well hidden by the patina. I rubbed only enough to be sure of what I saw, then left it alone.

This rifle also appears unsigned. The owner is unwilling to disturb the upper barrel flat, but I have little doubt that he'd find a script similar to mine.

When compared side by side these two rifles are unquestionably by the same hand in my opinion. This especially if one compares locks. The similarity between the two mechanisms is astounding and unique.

If there's beauty in simplicity, then Morrison struck gold. I doubt, though, that OSHA nor today's liability carriers would approve.
Did anyone else ever see the extra v on the football sideplate (extending from the screw hole?  This looks out of place to me, but it looks like it has good aging to the piece.  When I say out of place, I never saw this particular feature on an Upper Susquehanna.  This one has me a but stumped, but it is interesting.
I noticed. If I had to guess I'd say a spacer to make up for a bit of shrinkage or to cover an enlarged hole in the sideplate. In my opinion out of character for the gun as a whole.

I'm much more curious about the acorn and squirrel motif which seems at odds with that of the patchbox. (This isn't to say that I don't find it attractive and rather well executed.)
Nice gun, and certainly a good addition to the library.
However, I agree that the squirrel and thumb plate acorn engraving seem to be at odds with the remainder of the engraving on the gun. No doubt that it's well done, I just doubt that Morrison is the engraver.

While this rifle has some out of the ordinary details, it is well qualified to be placed in the Collection. And, it should be sent on to the Library, if, for no other reason than it has come from the far side of the world. Side hammers are rather rare and are fun, in my opinion. Does this gun have history in Oz? Would be interesting to know about that, if it does.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2020, 11:57:16 PM 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.