Rifle by an unknown maker

This antique full stock muzzle loading rifle was photographed in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. The maker is unknown. Rather than being filleted to the adjoining surfaces of the stock, most of the periphery of the lock and lock bolt panels on this stock truncate the adjoining surfaces of the stock. This is an attractive characteristic of the rifles produced by some Bedford County gunmakers. The streamlined tails on the lock and lock bolt panels fade into the wrist in the same manner that rifles by some Bedford County gunmakers do, however the panels panels on this rifle extend rearward farther than the panels of any other rifle I have seen. The rifle has the pointed tang common to rifles made in the region. The vestigial comb is a characteristic of many muzzleloaders from Somerset and Bedford counties. The main reason I included this rifle in my Somerset and Bedford county gunsmithing project is the configuration of the stock panels, and its physical presence in Somerset County.

The first photo below provides a slightly oblique view of the buttstock and lock panel portions of the rifle stock, and does a good job of showing how the lock panel merges into the wrist of this percussion rifle.

The next photo provides an enlarged view of the gun lock and mating lock panel, and makes it easy to see that much of the panel truncates adjacent portions of the stock, rather than being filleted to the adjacent portion of the stock. The percussion drum has a cleanout screw. A lanceolate-shaped inlay is located on the trailing portion of the lock panel.

The next photo shows the entry pipe region of the rifle, and shows that the wood of the stock has some curl.

The next photo highlights the nose cap and the forward ramrod ferrule.

The following photograph shows the rather plain design of the toe plate.

In the following oblique photograph, you can see that the front part of the lock panel is filleted to the adjacent surface of the stock, while the rear part of the panel intersects and truncates the adjacent portion of the stock. You can also see the pointed tang configuration that was popular in the region. Aft of the tang, you can see the outline of a missing elliptic inlay.

The following photo shows the cheekpiece. This and several other photos suggest that the stock has been sanded.

The next photo shows that the stock panel for the lock bolt plate has the same streamlined shape as the lock panel on the opposite side of the rifle.

The next photo highlights the three-screw lock bolt panel of this black powder rifle.

The following photo highlights the geometric design on the cheek piece inlay.

The next photo highlights the commercial lock, which was made by G. Goulcher.

The following photo highlights the hunting scene on the lock plate.

The following photograph highlights the maker’s name on the lock plate.

The following photo highlights the stamping at the front of the lock plate.

The following photo highlights the inlay aft of the percussion lock.

The final photo below provides an oblique view of the pointed tang, which is common to long guns built in the region.

This Somerset and Bedford County, Pennsylvania gunsmith project is intended to be a collaborative effort with gun collectors, historians, genealogists, etc. who may have information or photos to share.

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