Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 3068: Winchester Model 1866 Lever Action Musket

Auction Date: December 5, 2021

Highly Attractive and Exceptional Winchester Model 1866 Lever Action Musket

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $8,500 - $13,000

Highly Attractive and Exceptional Winchester Model 1866 Lever Action Musket

Manufacturer: Winchester
Model: 1866
Type: Rifle
Gauge: 44 RF
Barrel: 27 inch round
Finish: blue
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 457
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 63
Class: Antique

Offered here is a musket variation of the popular Winchester Model 1866 as manufactured in 1870. It is a third model with the block serial number stamped behind the trigger and a single upper tang screw. Winchester first offered the musket version of the Model 1866 in the third model serial number range. In all, Winchester produced approximately 14,000 Model 1866 muskets, the lowest production figure for any of the Model 1866 variations (rifle, carbine and musket). Model 1866 muskets are a very rare Winchester as most were sold to foreign customers, especially to South America, and saw hard use. This musket lacks foreign proofs and therefore most likely stayed in the United States. Encountering an above average condition example, like this one, is increasingly becoming very difficult. The barrel is fitted with three barrel bands, a block style front sight that serves as a lug for an angular socket bayonet (not included) and a dovetail mounted folding leaf rear sight graduated to 900 yards. The rear sight is the Henry pattern two position folding type with the staff marked 2-8 (200-800 yards) and the 900 yard sighting notch on top. The top of the barrel is stamped with the two-line Winchester New Haven address/King's patent legend. It has the correct 27 inch round barrel with the magazine tube that stops about 2 3/4 inches from the muzzle, allowing this rifle to have a full 17 round capacity, and correct sling loops mounted on the middle barrel band and lower stock area. The bolt retains its original rimfire firing pin. It is fitted with a straight grain American walnut straight grip stock and 3/4 length forearm. The buttstock has the musket style brass buttplate featuring a sliding trapdoor (cleaning rod not included). Provenance: The Milan J. Turk Collection

Rating Definition:

Very fine. The barrel and magazine tube retain 80% plus original blue finish with a patch of touched up pitting behind the middle band. The three barrel bands have a smooth brown-gray patina mixed with traces of original blue. The exceptionally fine brass has a highly attractive mellow appearance. The receiver has tight fitting side plates. 50% original case colors remain on the hammer. 50% original niter blue remain on the loading gate. The buttstock has been repaired at the wrist, otherwise the wood is fine with a couple scuffs and some minor dings and scratches. Mechanically excellent.

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