Fine. This rifle retains 30% of the original blue and traces of the original color casehardened finish. Much of the original finish on the barrel, magazine, receiver and other components has aged to dark gray-brown patina with scattered surface discoloration. The correct replacement nitre blued loading gate retains 30 original finish. Most of the dark patina is the result of storage wear; the rifle shows only light handling wear. The engraving, barrel and receiver marks are crisp. The fine original stock and forearm retain 75% of the high polish piano finish. Wear is limited to a few scattered and relatively minor handling marks and the horn buttplate which is a smooth, expertly made period replacement, that fits perfectly in the place of the original. The original checkering on the stock and forearm shows some wear but remains sharp. This is a fine, example of an extremely rare and highly desirable Winchester Model 1876 "One of One Thousand Rifle".
This is an outstanding example of a highly desirable Winchester "One of One Thousand" Model 1876 rifle that was manufactured in 1880. (This rifle is fresh to market and was discovered in Australia!) This rifle is one of only 51 "One of One Thousand" rifles manufactured in the Model 1876 series. Winchester manufactured more than twice as many (136) Model 1873 "One of One Thousand" rifles. This rifle is accompanied by a 1966 dated Winchester Gun Museum letter and a 2016 factory letter that confirm it shipped as a rifle with a .45-60 caliber 26" octagon barrel, casehardened finish, checked pistol grip stock, set trigger, and "1 of 1000" marking. It was received in the warehouse on June 7, 1880, and shipped the following day with order 20253. In "THE WINCHESTER BOOK", author George Madis notes Winchester manufactured a series of seven "One of One Thousand" Model 1876 rifles with the consecutive serial numbers 10013-10018. All of these rifles were shipped from the factory on June 8, 1880. This rifle has "One of One Thousand" engraved in script letters on the top barrel flat between the rear sight and the receiver with a scrollwork flourish at the muzzle end and scrollwork on a punch-dot background on the lower barrel flats below the marking and at the muzzle. Silver bands are inlaid on the barrel immediately ahead of the receiver and at the muzzle. The full octagon barrel and full-length magazine are blued and the forearm cap, receiver, hammer, lever and trigger are color casehardened. The receiver has a screw-fastened dust cover rail, blued dust cover with oval 'thumb print' and factory single set-trigger. The barrel has a sporting style front sight with nickel-silver blade and standard, folding leaf rear sight marked "1876" below the stop screw. The forearm and pistol grip stock are highly figured, fancy grade, walnut with high polish piano finish with fine checkered panels and the bottom of the pistol grip has an ebony or horn inlay. The stock is fitted with a black, hard rubber shotgun buttplate. The top barrel flat is roll-stamped: "WINCHESTER'S-REPEATING ARMS. NEW HAVEN. CT./KING'S-IMPROVEMENT-PATENTED-MARCH 29. 1866. OCTOBER 16. 1860." in two lines followed by: "CAL. 45-60" ahead of the rear sight. The caliber designation, "45-60" is stamped in script across the bottom of the cartridge elevator. "MODEL 1876." is roll-stamped on the upper tang in fancy letters. The left side of the lower tang is marked "XXXX" and "822" which designates high quality fancy walnut (4X) and an assembly number which is not on the stock as it is unmarked. The serial number, "10015" is stamped in small numerals across the lower tang between the lever latch and the tang screw. The legendary "One of One Thousand" Model 1876 and Model 1873 rifles are among the most celebrated and desirable of all American firearms. This Winchester Model 1876 "One of One Thousand" rifle would be the centerpiece of the finest collection of Winchester firearms.