Winchester Model 1873 Musket manufactured in 1902. The musket has the standard features which include 30 inch round barrel, full length magazine, three barrel bands with sling swivel on the middle band, block mounted iron front sight that also serves as a lug for a socket bayonet, military style folding leaf rear sight rear sight with 900 yard center notch, stock sling swivel and carbine style steel buttplate with sliding brass trap. The butt trap contains a five piece jointed steel cleaning rod. The upper tang is factory drilled and tapped for a sight. The Third Model receiver has an integral dust cover rail and dust cover with serrated edges. The rifle has a commercial blue barrel, magazine, barrel bands and receiver with niter blue loading gate and casehardened hammer, lever and buttplate. The stock and forearm are straight grain walnut with a varnish finish. The top of the barrel is roll-stamped "WINCHESTER'S REPEATING ARMS. NEW HAVEN. CT./KING'S IMPROVEMENT PATENTED MARCH 29. 1866. OCTOBER 16. 1860." ahead of the rear sight. "44 W.C.F." is stamped on the top of the barrel at the breech. "44 CAL" is stamped in script letters on the bottom of the cartridge elevator. The upper receiver tang is roll stamped "-MODEL. 1873.-" is script letters with foliate devices at either end of the marking. The lower tang is stamped with the serial number "570699B" between the lever latch and the tang screw. This musket appears to be part of a group of 700 muskets in the 569,000-571,000 serial number range that were shipped to Central America in September 1903. These muskets were apparently never issued and were re-imported to the United States in the late 1950s in new un-fired condition.
Excellent plus. The musket retains 98% of the original blue finish on the barrel, magazine, receiver and other components and shows only very limited storage wear. The hammer, loading lever and buttplate have 97% of the vivid case colors. The loading gate has nearly all of the niter blue finish. The stock and forearm are both excellent plus with wear limited to several very minor storage marks on the stock and some thinning on the finish on the underside of the forearm between the lower barrel band and the receiver. The markings are sharp. This nearly unused example of a Winchester Third Model 1873 Musket would be extremely hard to improve upon.
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