Ottoman Blunderbuss

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Dave Wallis

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Picked up this little Ottoman Blunderbuss the other day. Unlike other guns of this type that I have handled and seen, this one would seem to have proof stamps on the barrel, (either side of the X)
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Flint62Smoothie

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Proof marks could be under the barrel, that is more likely a Makers Mark. I bet you Rick from St. Louis wiill know …
 
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Hi Dave

Congratulations. Nice find. Which may turn out to be even more interesting with a little more investigation. This piece would be worthy of some additional photos: Top view, bottom view, inside the lock details, pan/vent hole area, trigger guard, etc. There may be a letter or number on the inside of the lock plate.
The amature engraving on the barrel appears to have been done at some point after the gun was built. Possibly by a second or third owner during the period.
But in any case, the cresent moon and fish are an indication of Ottoman/Turk ownership at some point. As Dale mentions, the two marks are more likely a builder's mark. Possibly just the barrel. Most of these pistols were generally unmarked, or given a false/spurios marks. This is so that the gun would not be traced back to any paticular shop, as these guns were sold to both friend and foe alike. Some questions if you would:

Is the iron ramrod the same length as the barrel ? Or is it considerably shorter ?
Is the trigger guard attached to the stock with screws ? Or simply nailed to the stock ?
Besides the barrel tang screw, the forward part of the barrel appears to be pin-fasten to the stock. Is this correct ? I don't see any evidence a barrel band(s) were ever in use.
Is there any sign that the grip/wrist area originally had checkering ? Maybe now worn down ?
Can you take some photos of the inside and outside of the lock itself ?

I know I'm just full of questions. LOL But this example may turn out to be of even more interest than most.

Rick
 

Dave Wallis

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Hi Dave

Congratulations. Nice find. Which may turn out to be even more interesting with a little more investigation. This piece would be worthy of some additional photos: Top view, bottom view, inside the lock details, pan/vent hole area, trigger guard, etc. There may be a letter or number on the inside of the lock plate.
The amature engraving on the barrel appears to have been done at some point after the gun was built. Possibly by a second or third owner during the period.
But in any case, the cresent moon and fish are an indication of Ottoman/Turk ownership at some point. As Dale mentions, the two marks are more likely a builder's mark. Possibly just the barrel. Most of these pistols were generally unmarked, or given a false/spurios marks. This is so that the gun would not be traced back to any paticular shop, as these guns were sold to both friend and foe alike. Some questions if you would:

Is the iron ramrod the same length as the barrel ? Or is it considerably shorter ?
Is the trigger guard attached to the stock with screws ? Or simply nailed to the stock ?
Besides the barrel tang screw, the forward part of the barrel appears to be pin-fasten to the stock. Is this correct ? I don't see any evidence a barrel band(s) were ever in use.
Is there any sign that the grip/wrist area originally had checkering ? Maybe now worn down ?
Can you take some photos of the inside and outside of the lock itself ?

I know I'm just full of questions. LOL But this example may turn out to be of even more interest than most.

Rick
Ok, the ramrod is just a dummy, it's removable, the end being ground down to pin size and locating in the mouth of the tail pipe. . The barrel is held in place with pins through the stock, as is the trigger guard.
The wrist has very worn checkering. I'll do some photos of the lock. Thank you.
 
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Hi Dave

Thanks for your reply. OK, the barrel is pin fastened. Most of these pistols barrels used a single, wide barrel band. The so called "false" ramrod is common. They preferred to load their pistols with a separate rod suspended around the neck. Photos of the lock will be interesting to see if it was locally made, or a European trade lock. Could be either.

Rick
 
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Thanks for the lock photos. Ok, from what I can see, the lock appears to be a common variety of European trade lock. Often these locks would be purchased at trade fairs and then decorated locally, or left plain.
Interestingly, the checkering on the wrist was more common than not - but only on the blunderbuss pistols. Seldom used on other guns.
There is a good chance that the lock, barrel, and hardware are European exports and stocked/assembled locally. Areas of Europe (especially Belgium and Italy) would manufacture a variety of parts (and even complete guns) just for export to the Ottoman markets.

This is a nice example of a plain, business use Ottoman blunderbuss knee pistol that was probably assembled somewhere in the first half of the 19th Century, and has seen some action.
Interesting this style of pistol never caught on in Europe or North America, but was very popular with Middle East type cultures.

Rick
 

Dave Wallis

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many thanks for your input Rick! I think these little guns are under appreciated; this is my other one!
Ottoman Dag 1.jpg
 
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many thanks for your input Rick! I think these little guns are under appreciated; this is my other one!View attachment 108769
Hi Dave. Yes, another good, typical example. These pistols, as well as other flintlocks in general continued in use all the way up through the 3rd. Quarter of the 19th Century. Hard to believe.
Here is my example: Heavily decorated, but still the same profile.
DSC00798 (Medium).JPG

Rick
 
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