Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 31: Desirable Documented Winchester Model 1876 .50 Express

Auction Date: December 1, 2017

Desirable Documented Winchester Model 1876 .50 Express Lever Action Rifle with Factory Letter

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $14,000 - $22,500

Desirable Documented Winchester Model 1876 .50 Express Lever Action Rifle with Factory Letter

Manufacturer: Winchester
Model: 1876
Type: Rifle
Gauge: 50-95 Winchester Express
Barrel: 26 Inch round
Finish: blue
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 2031
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 36
Class: Antique

Winchester "Centennial Model" 1876 Rifle chambered for the 50-95 W.C.F. Express cartridge with special Express sights and dust cover markings. This rifle is accompanied by a Cody Firearms Museum letter that lists the original manufacturer's date for this Model 1876 as: "Type: Rifle, Caliber: Express, Barrel Type: Round", and "Trigger: Plain". The letter states that this rifle was shipped from Winchester on November 26, 1889. The rifle has the Third Model receiver with integral dust cover guide rail and dust cover with serrated rear edges. The top of the dust cover is marked: "WINCHESTER EXPRESS/.50 CAL. 95 GRS." in two lines. The round barrel has a "Winchester Express" front sight with colored bead and a "WINCHESTER EXPRESS" rear sight with three folding leaves and platinum sight lines. The upper receiver tang is factory drilled and tapped. The crescent steel buttplate has a sliding brass trap door. 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." in two lines ahead of the rear sight. "50-95 W.C.F." is roll-stamped on the top of the barrel just in front of the receiver. The upper tang is roll-stamped "{MODEL. 1876.}" in fancy letters with foliate devices at either end. "50-95" is stamped in script numerals across the bottom of the cartridge elevator. The serial number is stamped in script numerals on the lower tang between the lever latch and rear tang screw. The barrel, magazine, forearm cap, receiver, dust cover and crescent buttplate have the Winchester blue finish. The loading gate is a fiery niter blue. The hammer and lever are color casehardened. The stock is "Extra Finish" walnut with a slight grain and the forearm is straight grain walnut. The stock and forearm have a semi-gloss varnish finish. Provenance: Gillespie collection.

Rating Definition:

Very fine. This rifle is all original and retains 60% plus of the original nitre blue finish. The barrel has some thinning and scattered age spotting along the top and left side. Nearly all of the blue finish remains on the magazine and forearm cap. The receiver shows finish wear on the contact points on the sides and side plates along with traces of age spotting. There is some finish loss on the top of the receiver and dust cover guide with a small spot of pitting at the end of the guide. The dust cover has 50% of the blue finish intact with sharp markings. The crescent buttplate has about 75% of the blue finish intact with some pitting on the toe and heel and a number of shallow dents along the center of the buttplate and trap. The loading gate has 70% of the nitre blue finish intact. The hammer and lever retain 70% of the muted case colors. The barrel and receiver markings are clear. The stock and forearm are both in very fine condition with nearly all the original finish. Wear is limited to a few insignificant handling and storage marks, primarily on the right side of the forearm. This is a very fine example of a scarce and very desirable documented Winchester Model 1876 .50 Express Rifle.

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