Author Topic: Philadelphia Target Rifle  (Read 1388 times)

Online fundukj

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Philadelphia Target Rifle
« on: July 25, 2018, 05:29:53 AM »
This is one fabulous rifle and my pictures don't do its engraving justice.  Name on barrel and lock.  Mint condition, except false muzzle and peep sight missing.  Also, horn nose cap replaced since pictures taken.  Perfect, mirror bore.  Note the inside of the cap box, finish on barrel, select wood and checkering.  Enjoy the photos.  John











































« Last Edit: July 25, 2018, 05:36:26 AM by fundukj »

Offline Brent English

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2018, 03:45:45 PM »
Really nice !  Have you researched the maker name?  Do you think it might be British made for export with US markings?  This happened a lot with shotguns.  Regardless, rare to find one in such wonderful condition.
Done right is better than done fast.

Online fundukj

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2018, 03:39:19 AM »
Thanks, Brent.  The closest I've come to locating him is a Lewis Houghton listed in Worcester, Mass.

Offline Steve Collward

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2018, 01:43:47 PM »
John:
  Very nice looking rifle.  Seller's "American Gunsmiths" lists a John Houghton in Philadelphia, Pa. and Trenton, N.J., and as you have found, Lewis Houghton in Worcester, Mass. Perhaps related?

Offline OLUT

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2018, 02:11:42 PM »
Here's your gun dealer ....


Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2018, 03:02:25 PM »
Born in Vermont 1787 died Philadelphia 1861. Ancestry has him as a captain in Maine. His father was a rev war captain named Abel Houghton. An interesting and talented gunsmith.  The story needs fleshed out. The deeper you look the more interesting it gets


« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 03:10:12 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 Bob Roller

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2018, 04:49:27 PM »
Such a wonderful combination of the British and American rifle.
Thank you very much for posting it for all to see.THESE types
of muzzle loaders really turn my crank.

Bob Roller

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2018, 05:23:14 PM »
In 1843 Luther Houghton applied for a patent for nails and rivets for trunks in Philadelphia.
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 OldSouthRelics

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2018, 05:23:57 PM »
John,

Just an absolutely incredible piece. The overall condition looks superb.

Based on my limited experience I'm inclined to believe Houghton is the retailer and this piece was manufactured by a very competent British Gunsmith for retail in the states. If Houghton was in fact a gunsmith, he was quite talented.

Thank you for sharing such eye candy.

Robert

Offline Shreckmeister

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2018, 05:29:27 PM »
Scientific American April 14 1855 shows Luther Houghton obtained patent for Sabots for rifled cannon.
Looks like he was a Capt in war of 1812.  He applied for payment for a horse shot by a soldier from Hartwell's
Company. 
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 05:35:22 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 Shreckmeister

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2018, 05:37:35 PM »
This might be the gunsmith's son because in 1812 he would be too young to be a drummer boy.
This family has big military history.

The meaning of the stones: the life and times of Wall Street United ...

https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0968230105

Mary Beacock Fryer, ‎John William Lamb, ‎Larry Turner - 1997 - ‎Snippet view
On 4 October 1812, Canadian raiders (including future Wall Street Trustee John Kilborn) were driven away from Ogdensburg. A mere nine ... On 7 February 1813, American riflemen led by Captain Benjamin Forsyth raided Brockville and captured 52 men. ... Years later, at Brockville, he would hear the preaching of Luther Houghton, who was a drummer-boy for the American forces in that same battle.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2018, 05:39:41 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 L. Akers

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2018, 05:42:47 PM »
The drip bar looks to be made of wood and stands proud of the lockplate.  Is that correct?

Offline Hungry Horse

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2018, 06:08:44 PM »
These English style target rifles were all the rage after the Civil War ( possibly due to their use as sniper rifles during the war) New York, and several places in Pennsylvania, had expert gunsmiths turning out work that rivaled the honored smiths of Great Britain. Charles Slotterback in San Francisco, and later Lakeport California, made high quality long range target, and schutzen, rifles in the English style.

  Hungry Horse

Offline Buck

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2018, 08:00:58 PM »
John,

Awesome gun, reminds of the Wurrflien rifle I had. That was the rifle that he built for the Derringer dealer in San Francisco.

Buck

Offline Hungry Horse

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2018, 08:13:57 PM »
That would be A.J.Plate from San Francisco. He had a falling out with Charles Slotterback who worked in his shop for a time. So, instead of buying a target rifle from his ex-employee, he ordered one from Andrew Wurfflein.
 Henry Deringer would very soon bring charges against Plate, for having the Slotterback brothers counterfeiting his distinctive pocket pistols. Deringer pistols with Plates address stamped on the barrel are likely to be Slotterback’s work in actuality.

 Hungry Horse

Online fundukj

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2018, 04:55:31 AM »
Thanks everyone for the comments and wonderful information!  Also, the bar above the front half of the lock is metal with the same finish as the barrel, but it does look like wood in the pictures.

Offline snapper

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #16 on: July 27, 2018, 05:54:46 AM »
Question:  have you ever seen a  drip  bar made of wood?

Fleener
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Offline Hungry Horse

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #17 on: July 27, 2018, 04:14:57 PM »
Late percussion target rifles sometimes used a front action lock, of the “bar in wood design” . This in effect created a drip rail as part of the stock. They are seen more on later shotguns, but the Slotterbacks used this style on some of their later creations. It originated in Great Britain I believe.

 Hungry Horse

Offline Buck

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #18 on: July 27, 2018, 06:24:53 PM »
No, I believe it was the Chris Curry House?

Buck

Offline Seth I.

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #19 on: July 30, 2018, 05:27:07 PM »
I wouldn't call that mint, but it is definitely a beautiful and very fine target rifle. Its got some minor aging to it and whatnot. That to me is more attractive than a "mint" rifle anyways. I like an old gun to actually look a little old even when it is in very fine, rarely if ever used condition.
*All opinions expressed here are mine alone and are NOT meant to represent those of any other entity unless otherwise expressly stated.*
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Offline RAT

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #20 on: August 02, 2018, 04:07:50 AM »
Looking at the photos the drip bar doesn't look like wood to me. I assumed it was metal with the same browned finish as the barrel.
Bob

Offline Seth I.

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #21 on: August 03, 2018, 04:11:06 PM »
false muzzle and peep sight missing.

Are you going to see if you can have replacements made? It would be cool to see that fabulous rifle professionally photographed with a full group of period correct accessories.
*All opinions expressed here are mine alone and are NOT meant to represent those of any other entity unless otherwise expressly stated.*
“So convenient a thing to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for every thing one has a mind to do.” ― Benjamin Franklin

Online fundukj

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Re: Philadelphia Target Rifle
« Reply #22 on: August 04, 2018, 03:39:15 PM »
false muzzle and peep sight missing.

Are you going to see if you can have replacements made? It would be cool to see that fabulous rifle professionally photographed with a full group of period correct accessories.

Better photos would be great, for sure.  The peep sight and false muzzle may have to wait a bit.