Author Topic: Berks Co. (Attributed) 110515-1  (Read 9791 times)

Offline nord

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Berks Co. (Attributed) 110515-1
« on: May 28, 2011, 04:56:33 PM »
Attributed to Berks county PA. The rifle has the typical Roman Nose profile associated with the rifles of this school. The patch box is not engraved and has a whale tail finial. The only furniture that has engraving is the toe plate that has the face of a man. The trigger guard is very wide, it is screwed in the back and pinned at the front (an early detail). The side plate is very thick with chamfered edges. There is raised carving at the rear ram rod pipe, the barrel tang, the wrist and to the rear of the cheek piece. The carving at the wrist does not really parallel with the rest of the carving, the carving at the rear is Low relief, I am not sure that is the proper terminology but it is incised very deeply and raised within the incised carving. It is beautifully done, I have seen 1 rifle pictured by H Mauger that has a similar rear carving. The wrist carving is a detail that I have seen on rifles attributed to Shener and Haga. There are 3 silver inlays, a tear drop between the toe plate and the trigger guard (Haga detail) a heart between the trigger guard and the rear ram rod pipe, and an 8 pointed star above the cheek rest. The swamped barrel is a 58 calibre smoothbore and is 43.5 inches in length, with a dimension of 1 inch across the barrel flats. There aren't any bore mill markings on the barrel which leads me to believe this individual possibly forged the barrel himself. The pull is 13.5 inches.


I, too, see a similarity between this rifle and some of Henry Maugers work, especially in the carving and the profile. I don't dispute that Shener probably made this gun, as he was early, and known to be a fine builder then as well as now, but do wonder if Mauger may have worked in Shener's tutelage for a time. It is possible that the falling leaf/flame PB finial may have derived from the so called 'whale tail' style.
This is one fine gun and let there be no doubt that this rifle belongs in the Library, as it is a grand, early Berks rifle.

A fine rifle, however, the attribution should be to Berks Co.,Boro of Reading. If it goes in the library as 'Attributed to Shener' than any other rifle that comes down the line looking remotely like it will become a Shener. Collectors have been dealing with this problem for years and heaven forbid the rifle gets in a book as a Shener as somewhere along the way the attribution part will fall off it's identity.

I personally love these "Boro of Reading" guns. Have 2 now and at one time 8. Unsigned, however, they must remain with the best description we can give them so far. "Berks Co.,Boro of Reading, Pennsylvania".


I think XXX is absolutely right......even an "attribution" acknowledged by us can be/ will be quite misleading. We have two more to post with the same attribution and from the same collection. I support , "PA Maker , unidentified of the Berks area".
« Last Edit: January 02, 2020, 04:20:07 AM by rich pierce »
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.