Antique BURNSIDE SPENCER Repeating Cavalry Carbine
Fine 1865 Contract Carbine for the US Army
Here we present an antique Burnside Spencer Saddle Ring Carbine, made circa 1865-1866 in Providence, Rhode Island. The Spencer repeating rifles were marvels of their time and had an impact on how war was to be fought in the future. Though their service life in the U.S. military was relatively short, the Spencer story includes Christopher Spencer, the inventor of the rifle, demonstrating and shooting with President Abraham Lincoln, who gave his full endorsement of the piece. Supposedly, during the Battle at Gettysburg, a captured Rebel said one could “load in the morning and fire all day!” This was due to the Spencer’s most endearing quality: a 7-round magazine tube in the butt of the gun. This gave the shooter phenomenal firepower in a day when most soldiers were muzzle-loading single shots or even singly loading their breech-loading carbines. This is one of the iconic carbines of the Civil War and Western Frontier.
This example is one of those made by the Burnside Rifle Co. who paid a royalty to Spencer per carbine. The top of the barrel is marked “SPENCER REPEATING/ RIFLE CO. BOSTON, MASS/ PAT’D MARCH 6, 1860. This one is equipped with a Stabler cutoff. Two clear government inspector cartouches remain on the right side of the stock: “GC” and “SL” possibly for George Curtis and Samuel Leonard.
The overall condition is fine. The iron metal surfaces retain about 30% of their original blue finish with an even plum patina making up the balance. Case colors remain vibrant on the breech block. The markings are clear. The serial numbers match. The walnut stock still shows cartouches and remains smooth and solid. The bore is sharp and shiny bright. The action is excellent, strong and crisp. Here is a very handsome example of a carbine that would have been in service during the Indian Wars on the Western Frontier!
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 20 inches.
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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