was there a "transitional Rifle"

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BS

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There is and old saying, "Everything Changes"
 

excess650

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So there is some uncertain attribution of the rifle I posted from previous topic discussion to Fainot?
EK was referring to your images as "the funky baroque piece".

I commented that the carving resembled something that Fainot would have done, but not intentionally suggesting that he had anything to do with it.
 

Brokennock

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EK was referring to your images as "the funky baroque piece".

I commented that the carving resembled something that Fainot would have done, but not intentionally suggesting that he had anything to do with it.
Thanks.
While I cab see why many would not like that gun,,, there is something about it I do really like, and it isn't something I can really describe. Well, except the patchbox, I don't like the shape, it disturbs the otherwise fowler-like flow of the lines. Mostly due to the squared off forward end I think.
 

ekettenburg

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Yes, that piece was - imho - a very nice piece when new. It's unfortunately been used extremely heavily with some losses and replacements, such as the sideplate and the replacement crude box. Actually I'd question as to whether it initially had a box at all. But overall the piece is professionally shaped and the carving appears very well executed. It's definitely not some farmer-made piece etc. I kind of get a gut impression that the carving reminds me more of furniture carving than typical gun carving.
 

excess650

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Rich,
Do you have pictures that you can post of the "Natty Bumpo" gun? The TG on it seems similar to that on the Tulip Rifle.
 

rich pierce

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So there is some uncertain attribution of the rifle I posted from previous topic discussion to Fainot?
RCA 17, the big smooth rifle with the added strip of wood on the underside of the buttstock, often attributed to William Antes, is not signed. Some hints suggest he made it, but it does not relate well to his signed rifles thought to be from the 1770s and 1780s.
 

rich pierce

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Rich,
Do you have pictures that you can post of the "Natty Bumpo" gun? The TG on it seems similar to that on the Tulip Rifle.
Here are my photos of the so called Natty Bumpo rifle. It’s overall dimensions are similar to the Tulip rifle but the architecture is very different. This was also in a Shumway Muzzle Blasts article. It’s a handy gun. Sorry for double posting of photos working from my phone given I have the MB articles I took no full length photos I was looking for details
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I am not sure what wood it is stocked in. Shumway called it maple but I think a fruitwood is possible. I have no idea what’s going on with the opposite lock panel where a sideplate should be. There’s some odd interrupted carving there.
 

duca

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Here are my photos of the so called Natty Bumpo rifle. It’s overall dimensions are similar to the Tulip rifle but the architecture is very different. This was also in a Shumway Muzzle Blasts article. It’s a handy gun. Sorry for double posting of photos working from my phone given I have the MB articles I took no full length photos I was looking for details View attachment 88428View attachment 88428View attachment 88429View attachment 88430View attachment 88431View attachment 88432View attachment 88433View attachment 88434View attachment 88435I am not sure what wood it is stocked in. Shumway called it maple but I think a fruitwood is possible. I have no idea what’s going on with the opposite lock panel where a sideplate should be. There’s some odd interrupted carving there.
How long ago was this picture taken? Sure would be nice to see this gun redone to its original glory.

Anthony
 

rich pierce

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More poor detail pix of the Natty Bumpo rifle. I took these pix maybe 4 years ago. I’m not in favor of restoration. It’s certainly been stabilized and had some finishing oil applied. It seems that at some point after the gun ended it’s working life, some yahoo engraved James Fenimore Cooper on the buttplate. This does not help us know when or where it was made or where it was used, or by whom. I’m not as convinced it was stocked here. Could have been. On this one, the breech is massive and I think the same length as the Tulip rifle - 35-36” long.

I have pictures of three other very early rifles I’m not allowed to share. One is quite plain and came from Saratoga. It’s thought it may have been used there. I think it is stocked in cherry and the guard and buttplate are plain; not engraved. The sideplate is crude but has scalloped edges. It has a barrel about 36-38”. Another is butt ugly and has no lock but is robust and plain. The third is the Fessler or Musicians rifle which likely pre-dates 1770 and has 1756 scratched on it. Recently another early rifle believed to be stocked here was sold. I’d not seen or heard of it before. All these early rifles are hard to place or date but look early, have early locks and furniture, and so on. It is rare to see “descendants” of these early rifles with the exception of the Marshall rifle. This makes it a wild guessing game.
 

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excess650

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I have seen the "Natty Bumpo" within the past 6 months, and it has not changed from your photos. The BP & TG seem similar to those on the "Tulip Rifle", but the cheekpiece ends very low and parallel to the toe. The lock inlet on the "Tulip Rifle" appears to be for a curved lockplate like the one seen on "Natty Bumpo".

I missed seeing the "Musician's Rifle", so have only heard vague descriptions, but longish barrel with large breech, seemingly bigger than Oerter's work.

A "shorty" has reappeared in the past year. This one in quite excellent condition. The story goes that it surfaced around Lancaster circa 1950(Shumway article?) and disappeared sometime later. It was purchased at an auction in Maine within the last year and was on display in Martinsburg (or was it Bushy Run?).
 

Brokennock

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I have pictures of three other very early rifles I’m not allowed to share.
I just don't understand this.
Not your not showing the pictures Rich, that I understand, you are following the owner's wishes.
I don't understand the owner's who don't want even pictures of these artifacts shown. Not wanting people handling them? I get it. Not wanting people coming to one's home to see them? I get it. But to have it be known these original rifle artifacts exist but say pictures can't be shared? I just don't understand this mentality.
 

ekettenburg

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The 'musicians' rifle is a seriously stout piece and was clearly made by a highly trained professional. It appears to be very early and I personally have no reason to doubt the scratched-on "1756 NJ" as very possibly the owner was involved in defending the forts along the blue mountain and into northern NJ at that time; there were different militia groups raised for the defense of the region ca. 1756/57. It turned up in Lititz and has been in one family for a very, very long time, in fact I was told that years ago it was frequently 'popped off' every 4th of July!

I very highly doubt that the Fenimore Cooper rifle is an American gun. If it is, it would be quite unique and likely quite early by a 'just off the boat' guy. The carved sideplate forms are not unknown on European work (German and French, that I've seen) but would be absolutely unique on an American gun.
 

rich pierce

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I think there’s an interest in pinning down what is and is not a rifle stocked here in the 1750s and 1760s. I’m sure fascinated by it. But over time my conclusion is that all good candidates are quite different from each other. In this period styles were not yet codified. Guns were most often not signed. So current builders can choose to build based on an original most agreee is from this period, or do it themselves more creatively. If all the parts of a build date from the mid 1700s and it’s stocked in American wood with an architecture and decoration related to early to mid 1700s European guns, it can be believable.
 

excess650

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I just don't understand this.
Not your not showing the pictures Rich, that I understand, you are following the owner's wishes.
I don't understand the owner's who don't want even pictures of these artifacts shown. Not wanting people handling them? I get it. Not wanting people coming to one's home to see them? I get it. But to have it be known these original rifle artifacts exist but say pictures can't be shared? I just don't understand this mentality.
Some of the owners choose to remain anonymous. Many guns pictured in books have been photographed in confidence, and reference is often made to "private collection". Collectors usually don't mind having other collectors with similar interest knowing what they have, but don't want it broadcast so as to make them a target of theft.
 

Brokennock

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Some of the owners choose to remain anonymous. Many guns pictured in books have been photographed in confidence, and reference is often made to "private collection". Collectors usually don't mind having other collectors with similar interest knowing what they have, but don't want it broadcast so as to make them a target of theft.
That I get. But to say, "yes, you can take pictures of this gun for yourself,,, but don't show them to anyone," I don't understand.
 

Artificer

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That I get. But to say, "yes, you can take pictures of this gun for yourself,,, but don't show them to anyone," I don't understand.
Hi Nock,

Actually it says good things about your character that you don't understand.

What the owner is doing from your question above means the owner TRUSTS the person taking the pictures won't allow them out to the general public for forgers and fakers to use, as well as TRUSTS the person taking the pictures won't also tell others who owns the gun, etc.

Now as to my character on why I can come up with answers like these is because I spent a good part of my career in the Marine Corps trying to think like a crook, so as to make it more difficult for crooks to steal weapons.

Gus
 

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