Antique HARPERS FERRY M1816 Cone Conversion MUSKET
Civil War Conversion of the Venerable Model 1816!
Here we present an antique Harpers Ferry US Model 1816 Musket in Percussion, manufactured at the armory at Harpers Ferry, Virginia, circa 1841. This Model 1816 flintlock musket was converted to percussion using the Belgian Style Alteration method, more commonly known as the “Cone Type” conversion, during the Civil War period or just prior. All external lock parts were removed with the screw hole plugged, the pan ground flush with lock plate (leaving the remnants intact) and the small existing cavity in the pan filled with brass to give it a level or squared off profile along the top. The vent hole of the barrel was plugged with a nipple screwed into the threaded receptacle at the top of the barrel, set off center towards the lock side. Then, adding the distinctive military hammer.
The War of 1812 revealed many weaknesses in American muskets. In an attempt to improve both the design and manufacture of the musket, the Model 1812 musket was created. The Model 1816 made further improvements, and replaced the Model 1812. Harpers Ferry became America’s second national armory after the site was personally selected by George Washington, with the Springfield Armory being the first. The U.S. Congress authorized the building of the new foundry in 1794, and by the following year, was producing hundreds of arms for the national army, which was primarily flintlock muskets and pistols. Inspired largely by the French Charleville Model 1777 musket, Harpers Ferry began producing the Model 1816. The M1816 was a smoothbore, muzzle loading weapon which used a .69 caliber musket ball. A trained shooter could fire between two and three rounds at a range of up to 200 yards per minute.
The M1816 was in production at Springfield (325,000) and Harpers Ferry (350,000) between 1816 to 1844 with around 675,000 muskets produced during this run. Additionally, more than a dozen contractors also made the Model 1816 Muskets during its production years, adding more than 146,000 muskets for a grand total of 821,421 M1816 Muskets produced. It saw service during the Mexican-American War and was even pressed into service during the Civil War in both the updated percussion and the old flintlock format. In the 1850’s, many 1816’s went through the conversion from flintlock to percussion, as did this one.
This musket looks like it has been through a war and remains virtually untouched. The iron parts are dark. The markings are legible. The walnut stock has been repaired at the top of the wrist and is firm. The smooth bore is coated with decades of fine dust. The action remains strong. Here is a fantastic US musket with lots of history behind it!
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 42 inches.
Caliber: .69 Percussion
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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