Author Topic: Alfred Gross 090421-1  (Read 14012 times)

Offline nord

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1548
Alfred Gross 090421-1
« on: April 23, 2009, 02:28:28 PM »
This silver mounted Alfred Gross rifle is thought to be the most ornate East Tennessee rifle known. 

The guard is hand forged iron with a silver overlay . .

OAL....63 ¾”. Length of Pull....13 ¾”. Height of butt plate…5 inches. Barrel length 47 inches, one inch at the muzzle, 7 groove rifling, 42 caliber. Lock length...51/16”. Trigger guard one inch wide.



It's an iconic TN gun, well known in the trade, and probably the most elaborate later example of an eastern TN style rifle that we'll ever see... topped off with a curly maple stock.

Beautiful rifle!

The signature area has had me somewhat perplexed though... Until this morning. Maybe revelation in the bottom of a coffee cup.

"Warranted * If * Well * Us " made no sense. It hit me (I'm very slow, you know) that the stamping was really...


A very important distinction! Maybe one of the first limited warranties.

Am I not correct?


I think you're right, as you can see what looks like a D stamped on the barrel. I guess Gross just planned poorly and ran out of silver inlay.
Warranted if well used,,,  ie, not beat all to heck.

I think the southern gun guys are going to love this one!

You are right on the money. I wondered what the barrel inscription meant as well, but never looked closer at it. When pulled off and blown up, it's easy to see the "D" plus a dot used as an apostrophe between the last 2 letters. Probably done under the advice of a lawyer, since the phrase "well us'd" leaves a wide range of interpretation.  Great catch!

A number of years ago, I was privileged to see and handle this rifle. It is a stunning work of art that would delight the heart of any collector, no matter what school he happened to like best. The silver work, the barrel inscription and the architecture are very well done to produce a beautiful gun that is extraordinary in all of its parts.
XXXX, you are correct about the apostrophe before the 'D'. As is often seen on engraved colonial powderhorns, the artist ran out of room and abbreviated, or stuck a missing letter or word above (or sometimes below) the main inscription. Looks like Gross did that in this instance. Good eye!
« Last Edit: December 31, 2019, 04:56:55 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.