Author Topic: William Tetley 090408-1  (Read 9692 times)

Offline nord

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William Tetley 090408-1
« on: April 15, 2009, 10:27:30 PM »
William Tetley was born in Pennsylvania and worked in Kansas, Missouri and Illinois.. He is listed in the 1860 census in Moniteau County, Missouri, (Post Office California, Missouri). Tetley was then 24 yrs old, born in Pennsylvania. His wife "C. A." was 26, born in North Carolina. Tetley is listed in the 1870 census in Pana, Christian County, Illinois. He was listed as being 35 yrs old, born In Pennsylvania. His wife Catherine, was 37, born in NC. His children were: George, age 7, born in Kansas; Emma, age 6, born in Kansas; Charles, age 3, born in Missouri; and Margaret, age 1. born in Illinois. He is listed in the 1880 census in Township 18 North, Range 10 West, Cass County, Illinois. The state gazetteeer for 1880 lists him as a gunsmith in Virginia, Cass County. He is listed as a gunsmith in Pana, Christian County in 1878 and in 1884. In the 1900 census, Tetley is listed as a farmer at Sharon, Fayette County, Illinois, which is not far from Pana.
The late Bob Newsome, who had a booth on the commercial row at Friendship for many years, told me that he once had a wooden rifling machine which he found locally, and eventually sold to someone in another state. It had the name "William Tetley" carved into the wooden base. Bob Newsome was from Ramsey, Fayette County, Illinois, so it was found very near where Tetley worked. Neither Bob nor I had any idea who William Tetley was at that time. That was in the early 1970's.
The vital statistics on this rifle are as follows:
Weight:                           10 lbs. 8 oz.
Length overall:                  57"
Barrel length:                   40 9/16"
Width across flats:           1"
Caliber:                            .38
Rifling:                              6 groove
Length of pull:                   13 1/8"
The drum and nipple are modern replacements, as someone had apparently been shooting it before I bought it.


A really nice half stocked rifle with a lot of good color to it. The inlays are interesting and show the desire on the part of the maker to produce a better than average gun. The engraving on the brass (guard and butt plate) does not match up with that of the inlays. This leads me to wonder if some engraved parts were available at that time to be purchased and used by the gun makers? Much like locks and so on.
Pretty gun!
Tryon sold a "gadzillion" parts to sporting goods stores and gunsmiths, and they could be purchased already engraved. The butt plate and trigger guard may well have been pre-engraveded by Tryon, or another major supplier.

It's an above average half-stocked rifle, relatively late and appears refinished, but a good addition to our library.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 05:00:22 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.