Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1301: U.S. Springfield Officer's Model 1875 Type I Trapdoor Rifle

Auction Date: December 4, 2021

Desirable U.S. Springfield Officer's Model 1875 Type I Trapdoor Rifle

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $5,500 - $8,500

Desirable U.S. Springfield Officer's Model 1875 Type I Trapdoor Rifle

Manufacturer: Springfield Armory U.S.
Model: 1875
Type: Rifle
Gauge: 45-70 Government
Barrel: 26 inch round
Finish: blue/casehardened
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 707
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 142
Class: Antique

Only 477 of Officer's Model rifles were manufactured by the Springfield Armory between 1875 and 1885 to fulfill the request by U.S. Army officers for suitable sporting rifles for use in hunting and target shooting. Of those, 125 are estimated to have been this Type I configuration, manufactured c. 1877-1879. These are easily among the most desirable of all the rifles manufactured by the Springfield Armory thanks to their rarity, quality, and connection to military officers. They are not serial numbered, but this rifle is marked "23" on the inside of the trigger guard bow. In function, the rifle is a standard Model 1873 trapdoor rifle with high-arch breechblock. However, it is embellished with traditional acanthus scroll engraving on the nickel forend cap, receiver, breechblock, lock, trigger guard, and buttplate. The lock has the standard U.S. Springfield markings including "1873" and the breech block has the standard Model 1873 markings including the early "eagle head/crossed arrows/US". There are standard proofs on the upper left of the barrel at the breech and "US" on the buttplate tang. It also features a shorter 26 inch barrel fitted with folding combination blade and globe front sight in place of the military front sight, a Model 1873 style rear sight graduated 1-4 on the right side of the stepped base and 5-11 on the ladder, and the early pattern tang mounted peep sight which were purchased from Sharps Rifle Co. It has a single set trigger, shorter sporting stock with checkered forend and wrist and lacks the detachable pistol grip that was added on later rifles, and a traditional style cleaning rod of the early nickeled and knurled type mounted below the barrel. "GDM", George D. Moller Collection mark is on the toe of the stock. Includes a wood tampion. Provenance: The George Moller Collection

Rating Definition:

Fine, retains 90% of the arsenal quality professionally refinished blue on the barrel and 80% plus of the refurbished case colors with the balance having thinned to a smooth grey patina, most noticeably on the buttplate and barrel band. The revarnished wood is also fine with some scattered minor dings and chips, a hairline crack on the left at the heel, and mostly well-defined checkering. Mechanically excellent.

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