Manufactured by Harpers Ferry Armory 1857-1861, with a total recorded production of 59,273. This example is 58 caliber, single shot muzzle loader with 40" round barrel secured by three barrel bands. Iron mounting with all metal parts finished bright. Steel ramrod with tulip shaped end and swelled shank. This example is known as a early production example with "long range rear site" with lock plate dated and barrel dated 1858. Barrels were of three-groove rifling with one turn in six feet. This early production example is manufactured without patch box. Lock markings with eagle motif on tape primer compartment lid and barrel marking at breech: VP Eagle Head with US on tang of butt plate. Inspector initials on left side of stock. A wonderful example Harpers Ferry Rifle musket that was the proven "staple arm" of the Civil War, and being the first U.S. martial arm firing the mini bullet in 58 caliber. Many early production Harpers Ferry Rifle Muskets were utilized by the Confederacy in large numbers.In the reference " C.S. Armory Richmond by Paul J. Davies on page 6, is this mention of interest to the Confederate arms collector. October 1861, The capture of the Model 1855 rifle and rifle musket machinery at Harper's Ferry by the Jefferson Battalion and the Fauquier Cavalry under Captain Turner Ashby on the 18th of April 1861 supplied Virginia with one of the largest and most modern sets of armory machinery in the world. The Richmond Model 1855 Rifle Musket known as the Richmond Rifle Musket thus started its life in mid September 1861 from these Harpers Ferry Rifle and Rifle Musket arms and parts. The most notable change to the Richmond Rifle Musket, from the U.S. Model 1855 Rifle musket was "the elimination of the Maynard Tape Primer apparatus from the lock.Reference page 9 of the reference "C.S. Armory" by Paul J. Davies. A very historic and outstanding condition example Model 1855 Harpers Ferry Rifle Musket.
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