SOUTHERN POOR BOY Antique Smoothbore LONG RIFLE Tiger Maple .47 Caliber
Full-Stock Kentucky Rifle with SILVER INLAID Barrel
Here we present an antique Southern Poor Boy Full-Stock Kentucky Smoothbore Long Rifle, made circa the 1850s. Long arm manufacture in the mid-19th Century was rapidly changing over from thousands of craftsman all over the United States and on the Frontier making and selling their wares, to the large factories with standardized assembly lines and modern manufacturing techniques. Many makers’ names of the so-called Kentucky long rifles have been lost over time. This rifle is one such example. This smoothbore would have started out life as a flintlock and converted to percussion with a Stout & Ingoldsby lock when the more reliable percussion firing system came about. It features very minimal metal hardware due to scarcity of materials and/or expense, hence the moniker “Poor Boy”. This one does not even have a butt plate, as you can see in the photos. This one does have some silvery inlays in the top of the barrel both over the breech and near the muzzle. There is a long rectangle over the breech that appears to have been signed, possibly by the maker. A fascinating piece and very rare!
The American Longrifle, more commonly, but less correctly, known as the ‘Kentucky rifle’, was described by Captain John G. W. Dillin in the dedication to his seminal 1924 book, The Kentucky Rifle:
“From a flat bar of soft iron, hand forged into a gun barrel; laboriously bored and rifled with crude tools; fitted with a stock hewn from a maple tree in the neighboring forest; and supplied with a lock hammered to shape on the anvil; an unknown smith, in a shop long since silent, fashioned a rifle which changed the whole course of world history; made possible the settlement of a continent; and ultimately freed our country of foreign domination.
Light in weight; graceful in line; economical in consumption of powder and lead; fatally precise; distinctly American; it sprang into immediate popularity; and for a hundred years was a model often slightly varied but never radically changed.”
The overall condition is Good. The lock’s mainspring is not currently providing any tension, but the hammer does his the half- and full-cock notches audibly. The bore is smooth and dark. The stock shows wear appropriate to use and age. An excellent piece of history and heritage from the American South!
Own the original! This is a legitimate antique and not a reproduction.
Barrel is 38 inches.
Caliber: .47 Percussion
Overall condition as seen in photos.
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