Author Topic: D. Newkirk 100315-1  (Read 6218 times)

Offline nord

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D. Newkirk 100315-1
« on: March 18, 2010, 05:05:57 PM »
The signature is definitely D * Newkirk. The overall length is approximately 53", barrel length 38 1/2", caliber appears to be .38.  A previously unknown maker is possible.  It's also possible that he was a blacksmith who made a few rifles over a period of time.


Actually, the guard shape and the rear pipe without a tail, or flange, is a clue that it might be made in KY...  altho I think I detect a slight "fish belly" in the butt stock, indicating it was probably made up in Indiana. The wavy line above and below the name is also a central KY characteristic on better guns.

Daniel Newkirk was born in PA in 1798, and in 1800 when he was 2 years old, he came with his parents to Jefferson County, KY, where the family settled outside of Louisville. He grew up in KY and was trained as a gunsmith and blacksmith, then worked in Henry County for several years  beginning about 1819, married there, and in either 1829 or 1833 moved up into Indiana, settling in Johnson County, where he continued working as a blacksmith and gunsmith. He moved into Morgan County, IN in 1836, and later in life moved west to Iowa where he died in 1897 at a ripe old age.


I was going to hazard Ohio as the place of origin for this little rifle, but either side of the Ohio River will do. The spur on the trigger guard is usually associated with guns made in that region; all of the Ohio pieces on my wall have the spur, for example. But then, so does my little M. Sell made on the south bank of the River. What we are here to decide is whether it has sufficient merit to be placed in the Library, and I feel that it does. The piece is in as-found condition and was not only used, but appreciated, at least to the point that the owner made a wrist repair on the stock when it was broken.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2020, 04:49:17 PM by Tim Crosby »
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