Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 176: Robert Johnson U.S. Contract Model 1814 Flintlock Rifle

Auction Date: December 3, 2021

Scarce Robert Johnson U.S. Contract Model 1814 Flintlock Rifle

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $2,000 - $3,500

Scarce Robert Johnson U.S. Contract Model 1814 Flintlock Rifle

Manufacturer: R. JOHNSON
Model: 1814
Type: Rifle
Gauge: 54
Barrel: 33 3/8 inch part octagon
Finish: bright
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 563
Item Interest: Average
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 87
Class: Antique

Robert Johnson Model 1814 U.S. contract rifles are described on pages 404-407 of George D. Moller's book "American Military Shoulder Arms Volume III". According to page 404, "In November 1814, Robert D. Johnson of Middletown, Connecticut, contracted to deliver 2,000 rifles to the United States at $17 each, over a five-year period." Actual delivery dates are shown from March of 1816 through June of 1819. Henry Deringer of "Philadelphia Deringer" fame manufactured a similar amount. These rifles were the predecessors of the more numerous Model 1817 "Common Rifles". The Model 1814 can be quickly identified by its shorter and part octagon barrel as well as the smaller "stud" style retainers for the barrel bands. It has a dovetailed brass blade front sight, dovetailed notch rear sight, "P/US" marked on the upper left flat at the breech, "LS" (Luther Sage) inspection initials marked on the upper right flat of the breech, and a full-length stock with cheek rest. This example has an unmarked lock, attributed as a feature of early examples (reference lots 161 and 180 of this auction with marked locks), "GDM" (George D. Moller) collection initials marked at the toe of the stock. Includes a period leather sling and tools in the patchbox. Provenance: The George Moller Collection

Rating Definition:

Good with scattered moderate pitting and dark patina overall, and a rebushed touch hole. Stock is very good as re-oiled with some light scratches and dents, some chips around the middle and rear barrel bands, some discreet repairs around the lock, a crack beneath the lock, and a few cracks at the right of the buttplate. Mechanically fine.

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