This is an exceptional example of a high quality "Volunteer" Pattern 53 Rifle-Musket manufactured by London Armory. Blued barrel, casehardened lock, hammer and a high grade checkered Italian walnut stock. The upper left rear of the barrel sight is stamped with what appears to be three British military proof, inspection and property marks including the "Broad Arrow". All three have been carefully struck before the barrel was blued. The barrel is highly polished and has a deep plum blue finish. The barrel bands have a high gloss blue finish. The lock and hammer are casehardened. The buttplate, trigger guard and forend cap are brass. The closely grained walnut stock has a semi-gloss oil finish with deep well executed checkering on the wrist and forend. The lock plate is stamped with the Queen's "Crown/V.R." mark which is usually only found on British Army Pattern 53 muskets. "1861/L.A. Co." is stamped ahead of the hammer. The right side of the butt is stamped with a double roundel marked: "LONDON ARMOURY CO. BERMONDSEY" in the outer circle and is dated "1862" in the center. The three-letter initials of the gunsmith who fitted the stock are stamped in the ramrod channel between the lower and middle barrel bands. There is a swing swivel mounted on the forward barrel band and the front of the trigger guard. There is a nipple shield with a brass chain attached to the trigger guard sling swivel. The rifle is carefully finished and was clearly manufactured as a privately purchased weapon and not for British Army issue or export to the United States.
Excellent plus. The barrel retains at least 98% of the original blue finish with wear confined to small areas of surface rust on the right side of the barrel on either side of the middle barrel band. The lock and hammer retain 98% original vivid case colors. The stock is excellent with some very minor storage marks. The checkering remains extremely sharp showing minimal wear. All markings on the stock lock and barrel are extremely sharp. The bore is mint and the rifle appears unfired and has been exposed to minimal, careful handling. In our opinion the finest conditioned example of a high quality English Volunteer Pattern 1853 Rifle-Musket that would be the center piece of any English or Percussion long gun collection.
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