This is a solid example of a desirable First Model Henry Rifle that was manufactured by the New Haven Arms Co. in 1863. The barrel has a German silver blade front sight and a folding ladder rear sight graduated from one to nine hundred yards. The top of the brass frame has a dovetail slot positioned towards the hammer. The top barrel flat is stamped "HENRY'S PATENT. OCT.16. 1860/MANUFACT'D BY THE NEWHAVEN ARMS. CO. NEWHAVEN. CT" ahead of the rear sight and the serial number "2658" is stamped at the breech. The serial number is also stamped on the inside of the buttplate, on the shanks of both buttplate screws, in the upper stock tang inlet and the left side of the lower tang. The left side of the barrel has a sling loop and the left side of the buttstock has a sling swivel. Mounted with a smooth straight grip stock. The brass butt plate has the early rounded profile heel. Experts believe that most Henry Rifles manufactured before 1865 saw Civil War service. The Ordnance Department purchased about 900 Henry Rifles in 1863-1864 for issue to the 1st D.C. Cavalry Regiment and a small number in 1865 for issue to the Veteran Volunteer Infantry Regiments. The majority of Henry Rifles were privately purchased by individual Federal soldiers who appreciated the rifle's firepower and advanced design. Most of these soldiers were in Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky regiments in the Army of the Cumberland. Some western regiments, like the 66th Illinois Infantry, were primarily armed with privately purchased Henry Rifles.
Very good. The barrel and magazine have a smooth dark patina overall. The markings are crisp. The brass has an attractive aged patina. Traces of original case colors remain on the hammer (in the face). The wood is also very good with a minor surface chip missing near the stock toe, a couple barely noticeable hairline stress cracks near the upper tang and some minor pressure dents and scratches. Mechanically fine. This Henry rifle will fill the gap in your collection very well!
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