CIVIL WAR Antique SPENCER ARMY Contract RIFLE
Trialed and Endorsed by President Abraham Lincoln
Here we present an antique Spencer Repeating Rifle Co. Rifle, made circa 1863 in Boston, Massachusetts. Just under 11,500 were delivered under this contract, making this a very scarce Civil War rifle indeed. These lever-operated, breech-loading rifles were marvels of the 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. The first Spencer Army Contract rifles were issued to George Armstrong Custer’s 5th Michigan Cavalry, who would be amidst some of the most ferocious fighting at Gettysburg. Supposedly, during the Battle at Gettysburg, a captured Rebel said one could “load [the Spencer] 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.
The top is marked “SPENCER REPEATING/RIFLEE CO. BOSTON MASS./PAT’D MARCH 6 1860.” The serial number falls into the correct range of the Army Contract rifles. The .52 caliber bore features 6-groove rifling.
The overall condition is good. The iron is dark with age and with an old coat of oil throughout. The markings are clear. The serial numbers match. The walnut stock has seen a lot of hard use and remains solid. The bore is bright with good rifling. The action is excellent, strong and crisp. Here is a scarce example of a Civil War Spencer Rifle that looks just like it should!
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 30 inches.
Caliber: .52 Spencer
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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