Designed by Erskine S. Allin, Master Armorer at Springfield Armory, to correct multiple problems encountered with the Model 1865 conversion rifles. Approximately 25,000 Civil War era muzzle loading rifle-muskets were converted at Springfield Armory to Allin's Model 1866 breech loading system and rechambered to .50-70 CF. This example is a Short variation with an overall barrel length of 36 inches (32 5/8 inches to the face of the breech block). Not too much is known about these short variations, although a January 6th, 1883 dated Springfield Armory report mentions, "Springfield B.L.R. musket Cal. 50 Model 1866 (Short). Ready for issue. Cleaned and repaired. 1,019 on hand." Dated "1863" on the lock and "1866" on the breech block. The left stock flat is marked with three script cartouches including that of Springfield Master Armorer Erskine S. Allin. "GDM" (George D. Moller) collection initials marked at the toe of the stock. Includes a US socket bayonet and period leather sling marked "U.S." and "C.S. STORMS/MAKER/NEW YORK". Provenance: The George Moller Collection
Fine, retains 40% of the original black oil-quenched casehardened finish with some moderate pitting on the retaining piece ahead of the breech block. Barrel remains bright with only light pitting around the breech area. The lock retains 50% muted original case colors. Stock is fine as lightly arsenal refinished with some light scratches and dents, an absent section at the right of the forend, slightly undersized around the lower tang and bottom of the buttplate, and nice cartouches. Mechanically excellent. Included bayonet and sling are both fine.