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Login Name Post: Tennessee Rifle history        (Topic#307147)
kswan 
40 Cal.
Posts: 130
04-14-18 06:49 PM - Post#1679618    


Hello all.

Doing some google research on this and cant find to much on dates. So, what would be the approximate date that the rifle would have been recognized as the Tennessee rifle.

Thanks
Kelvin



 
Stophel 
75 Cal.
Posts: 5314
Stophel
04-14-18 07:21 PM - Post#1679622    

    In response to kswan

There is an iron mounted rifle, ca. 1810, by Joseph Bogle, of Blount co. Tennessee, and is the earliest I know of.

The large majority of existing "Tennessee rifles" are more like 1850-60-70's. As I recall, some of the Bean rifles are dated to the 1830's.... This is NOT my time period, so I'm not the expert, by any means.

Edited by Stophel on 04-14-18 07:23 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
kswan 
40 Cal.
Posts: 130
04-15-18 07:17 AM - Post#1679682    

    In response to Stophel

Thanks very much for getting back to me on this one.

Kelvin

 
Ames 
45 Cal.
Posts: 805
Ames
04-15-18 08:07 AM - Post#1679690    

    In response to kswan

I'm not good as a computer guy so I cant get you a direct link, but...
Look this paper up. I think you will enjoy it.

TENNESSEE RIFLES
By Robin C. Hale
A paper presented at the Fall, 1970 meeting of the American Society
of Arms Collectors at Houston, Texas

 
MSW 
Cannon
Posts: 7052
MSW
04-15-18 10:50 AM - Post#1679721    

    In response to Ames

Ames, thank you ... I vaguely remember the paper, but could not recall the author or society at which it was presented.

Here's a link:

http://americansocietyofarmscollectors.org/wp-content/upload...

(it will come in a small PDF file, about 23 or 24 pages)

 
Ames 
45 Cal.
Posts: 805
Ames
04-15-18 11:43 AM - Post#1679744    

    In response to MSW

That's the one. Thanks.
I had saved it from research before I built one. Now days I go back and read it every so often. Really cool paper. Good reading on a rainy morning.

 
Zonie 
Moderator
Posts: 26745
Zonie
04-15-18 04:57 PM - Post#1679822    

    In response to Ames

Tennessee rifles were made from the flintlock era thru the percussion era, and even a bit later.

The Bean family seems to have been busy in Tennessee in the 1780?-1870 period.

John Selvidge was making Tennessee rifles in the 1800-1845 time period.

Pictures of his rifling machine are shown in Ned H. Roberts, "THE MUZZLE LOADING CAPLOCK RIFLE"
Just Jim...



Edited by Zonie on 04-15-18 04:59 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
kswan 
40 Cal.
Posts: 130
04-16-18 06:34 AM - Post#1679900    

    In response to Zonie

Thanks very much, all very interesting reading.


 
simonbeans 
36 Cal.
Posts: 85
simonbeans
04-16-18 08:28 AM - Post#1679910    

    In response to MSW

Thanks for the link to that paper. It is a rainy morning here in WNY and the read was very enjoyable. The paper makes me appreciate my Kimber mountain rifle, albeit, not of Tennessee design, but of Carolina. Still the overall architecture gives me thought of a Tennessee rifle I built many years ago that I sold to buy a horse, which by now is a dead horse. Wasn't there some sort of saying about a dead horse?

 
tenngun 
Cannon
Posts: 8034
tenngun
04-16-18 10:04 AM - Post#1679928    

    In response to simonbeans

Any of our rifle styles started in a big grey area. There is no time and no place one can point your finger to and say this is where they started, or this place. All the rules we put in place were broken in the day.
They were iron mounted, except for the ones that were brass,brass and silver or iron and silver. They were poor boys, except for the fancy ones.
Carolina were their ancestors except for Pennsylvania influences.
Our concept of a Tennessee rifle or a Ohio or Virginia or a plains rifle are all modren concepts and labels. Back then they were just rifles reflecting local taste and needs.

 
Elnathan 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1295
04-17-18 09:24 PM - Post#1680229    

    In response to tenngun

Depends a lot on how you are defining "Tennessee rifle." The use of iron mounts probably dates back around 1770 or so in SW Virginia - there is a written reference to an iron mounted rifle from 1775 - and was carried with the first settlers in TN. There are a few iron mounted rifles from the 18th century still extant, but they are a bit different from the later classic iron mounted TN mountain rifles. Stepped wrists were still being used in the 1790s, for example.

Also, there were plenty of rifles being built in Tn that were brass mounted - the "black rifles" up the mountains were only one style made in the state.

 
Native Arizonan 
54 Cal.
Posts: 1602
04-17-18 11:07 PM - Post#1680244    

    In response to Elnathan

There wasn't a Tennessee until 1796, except maybe a Tennessee River Valley or a Tennessee County, NC. The populated part of the state was either part of NC, part of VA, the State of Franklin, or the Southwestern Territories before the State of Tennessee was formed.

I could easily be wrong on this, but I don't think the name Tennessee Rifle was applied before Turner Kirkland and other fairly recent collectors started to describe the iron mounted rifles that way. So the answer to the OP's question:

  • Quote:
So, what would be the approximate date that the rifle would have been recognized as the Tennessee rifle.



may very well be post WW II, as nobody called them that before then. I could be off by a few years or decades, though.

Other possible questions might be

"When were rifles first built in the area now known as the State of TN?"

"When were rifles first built in the State of Tennessee?"

"When were iron bound rifles that look like what we now think of as Tennessee Rifles, first built for use in what we now know as the State of Tennessee?"

These questions may all have different answers.

 
Gene L 
54 Cal.
Posts: 1517
04-19-18 09:44 PM - Post#1680644    

    In response to Native Arizonan

Very good link. I wish he'd posted the calibers, though.

 
kswan 
40 Cal.
Posts: 130
04-22-18 03:58 PM - Post#1681032    

    In response to Native Arizonan

I would say question 3 would be the direction I was going.


 
tenngun 
Cannon
Posts: 8034
tenngun
04-22-18 05:48 PM - Post#1681041    

    In response to Native Arizonan

We would best call them southren rifles, as thisgeneral style was made in multiple southren states. Any time we attempt to put out rules we find exceptions. Any gunsmith could expect a twenty year production time. Just over that time gun styles changed.
Looking at Pennsylvania rifles. The apprentice who made transitional rifles in 1750 could well be active making federalist style.
North Carolina gunsmith in 1800 could be making rifles I in Tennessee in 1820 and may haves moved in to Arkansas Missouri or Iowa, and just maybe into Indiana or Illinois.


 
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