Rock Island Auction Company
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Lot 1416: Pair Thomas Boss Double Barrel Percussion Shotguns

Auction Date: December 4, 2021

Rare Engraved Pair of Thomas Boss 14 Bore Double Barrel Percussion Shotguns

Estimated Price: $5,000 - $8,000

A) Thomas Boss Percussion Shotgun with Case

Manufacturer: Boss
Model: SxS
Type: Shotgun
Gauge: 14
Barrel: 30 1/2 inch
Finish: brown/blue/casehardened
Grip:
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 434
Item Interest: Average
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 208
Class: Antique
Description:

The makers have kindly confirmed that this pair of guns were ordered on May 1, 1858 by a Martin Ridley Smith Esq.re with 2 ft. 6 1/2 (31 1/2 inch) barrels and individual cases with leather outers. With browned Damascus barrels numbered “1” and signed “THOMAS BOSS. 73 ST. JAMES’S STREET. LONDON” on the concave sighed rib. Patent breeches each with platinum plug and short inlaid platinum line, the rib section engraved with scrollwork. Scroll engraved standing breech and border and scroll engraved bar-in-wood locks each signed “THOMAS BOSS”. Border and scroll engraved iron furniture including trigger plate and ramrod entry pipe each with elongated pineapple finial, the trigger guard and heel plate each numbered “1”. Well figured half length stock with checkered grip and forearm, the forearm barrel channels stamped with the serial number, the underside of the butt with blank silver oval initial escutcheon. Brass mounted wooden ramrod. London proof marks. In original lined and fitted brass cornered oak case, the lid with printed Thomas Boss trade label stating “Many Years with the Late / JOSEPH MANTON”, with some accessories including Bartram & Co. leather wrapped powder flask and Sykes leather shot flask. The lid with circular brass escutcheon engraved with the monogram “M.R.S.” in “old English” as per the notes in the Boss records.

Rating Definition:

Very good. The barrels have a pleasing Damascus twist pattern and most of the rebrowned finish with slightly softened rib signature. Patent breeches are a dark grey blue finish. Very slight traces of original casehardened finish remain on the locks and standing breech, some discoloration, engraving clear. Furniture a light grey discolored patina with slightly softened engraving, the heel plate’s toe with old dent. Stock refinished with refreshed checkering, occasional age related storage and handling blemishes. Replacement ramrod. Mechanically fine. Case in good condition with age related wear to the lining, trade label with period handwritten notes.



B) Thomas Boss Percussion Shotgun

Manufacturer: Boss
Model: SxS
Type: Shotgun
Gauge: 14
Barrel: 30 1/2 inch
Finish: brown/blue/casehardened
Grip:
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 434
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 208
Class: Antique
Description:

See “A”. The rib, heel plate and trigger guard are numbered “2”, the barrels have been incorrectly re-engraved “T. BOSS. 41. ALBERMARLE STREET. PICCADILLY. LONDON.” With unmarked shot flask, funnel, and nipple wrench. The vendor informs us that the pair had been split for many years before being reunited in 2012. Provenance: The Malcolm King Collection

Rating Definition:

In similar condition to "A" with heavier discoloration to the locks and furniture. Unfortunately the case for this gun has been lost in the mists of time.



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