Model 1861 Special Model Rifle-Musket manufactured by Colt. The Springfield Armory supervised the manufacturing and distribution of the Model 1861 muskets. To fulfill shortages, production was sub-contracted to several private manufacturers; Colt, LG&Y, E.G Lamson, and Amoskeag. Colt contracts with Federal and state governments resulted in the manufacture of approximately 100,000 muskets. These arms had some features common to the British Enfield rifle-muskets that were widely imported during the War. Among these were the S-shaped, the elimination of the bolster clean-out screw, and the use of screws rather than springs to secure the barrel bands. The general shape of the stock, the .58 caliber bore, and the short-base three-leaf rear sight were all similar to those of the U.S. Model 1861 Rifle-Musket. Although Colt was the largest single manufacturer of these arms, other contractors, including Amoskeag and E. G. Lamson, produced an additional 50,000 Model 1861 Special Muskets. The Special Model 1861 represented a transition from the Model 1861 design and incorporated many of the features eventually adopted in the Model 1863.
This example was produced by Colt in Hartford, Connecticut, and came directly out of the estate of Samuel Colt. All metal surfaces are bright, aging to a very slight brown. The bore is mirror bright with sharp rifling. The stock is excellent, with sharp contours and two deep cartouches opposite the lock. The barrel is dated 1863 with “VP”, “STEEL” and eagle proof marks. The lock plate is dated 1863 and marked “U.S. COLT’S Pt F. A. Mfg Co HARTFORD Ct.” The action is tight and functions on all positions, and the cone is original but slightly bent. The barrel retains the original rear sight, blued and complete with both leaves. Complete with original bayonet that is in bright condition and only missing the locking ring screw. A sharp, attractive example directly from Samuel Colt’s estate.
Inventory Number: RIF 154 / SOLD