Author Topic: Help date this flintlock mechanism  (Read 934 times)

Offline Levy

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Help date this flintlock mechanism
« on: August 22, 2020, 08:46:15 PM »
This flintlock mechanism was recovered from San Marcos de Apalache, a Spanish fort that began in the late 17th century and was occupied under many flags until after the Civil War.  The fort stands at the confluence of the St. Marks River and the Wakulla River here in Florida.  I'm very interested in any opinions that you might share, particularly the time period and what you think it might have been used on.  James Levy






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« Last Edit: August 22, 2020, 11:07:29 PM by Dennis Glazener »
James Levy

Offline Levy

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2020, 08:52:16 PM »
Sorry about the orientation of the photos.  I simply don't have a good handle on how to do it yet.  The ends of the lock bolts are still in the lock plate.  No bridle on the tumbler, but one on the frizzen. there appears to be a roller on the end of the frizzen spring.  The lockplate appears to be slightly banana shaped (could be photo distortion).  Your thoughts please.  James Levy

Fixed the for you James.
Dennis
« Last Edit: August 22, 2020, 11:08:10 PM by Dennis Glazener »
James Levy

Offline Eric Kettenburg

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2020, 12:33:39 AM »
Given the roller spring and the flat slabbed shape of the comb on the cock I would guess British, probably later i.e. post Rev War rather than earlier - very possibly early 19th century.  There have likely been some corrosion losses to the plate - it may not have been rounded at the tail completely, there may have been a smaller tit that has simply rusted away.  Also while there is no internal bridle now, there looks to be a shadow of an internal tumbler tit or shaft, so possibly it had an internal bridle originally and at some point was 'repaired' or adjusted crudely?
Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline Levy

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2020, 01:48:05 AM »
Thanks Dennis for fixing the orientation of the photos.  I thought I was doing well to attach the photos.  Eric, I appreciate your observations on the lock.  I think the tail end of the lock plate looked different before the corrosion.  Since a lot of trading was done with the Indians in this area, I suspected that it might be from a trade gun, but the roller on the frizzen spring seems overly refined for that.  James Levy
James Levy

Offline Eric Kettenburg

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2020, 03:55:59 AM »
I'm not any kind of historian on British locks, so take this with a grain of salt, but by I would guess the second quarter of the 19th century, I think there were a lot of locks destined for trade guns that looked a lot more refined than they really were.  I've seen quite a few British and other European locks made for near east and middle eastern trade that at first glance look very refined and high quality, but fit and function doesn't match the fancy drapery...
Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline sz

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2020, 05:34:43 PM »
I can't say I am any authority, but we see a roller on the frizzen spring and a rounded tail (which may have simply rusted off from any kind of point)  We also see no internal bridal over the tumbler.

Looking at those features I think "Belgian" and would guess the time period to be from about 1830 to 1865

Offline J. Talbert

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2020, 11:34:13 PM »
Appears to be a detached pan from that inside view, or am I seeing something else?  Did the British ever use a detached pan?

Jeff
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Offline Levy

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2020, 12:27:13 AM »
J. Talbert,  I don't have the lock in hand, but the photo does look like it has a detachable powder pan.  Did the English not use that? James Levy
James Levy

Offline J. Talbert

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2020, 05:50:43 AM »
J. Talbert,  I don't have the lock in hand, but the photo does look like it has a detachable powder pan.  Did the English not use that? James Levy
If they did I wasn’t aware of it.  Perhaps they did.  Maybe EK or Smartdog could weigh in.

Jeff
"When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic"  Benjamin Franklin

Offline cshirsch

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2020, 07:42:27 PM »
It's a low to medium quality 'trade lock' probably from the 1810ish period.

Offline Levy

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2020, 08:07:29 PM »
Thanks cshirsch for joining in on the discussion.  James Levy
James Levy

Offline cshirsch

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Re: Help date this flintlock mechanism
« Reply #11 on: August 29, 2020, 10:57:47 PM »
Thanks cshirsch for joining in on the discussion.  James Levy

You bet.