1861 Springfield

Joined
Apr 30, 2018
Messages
30
Location
West of the Rockies
#1
1861-4.JPG
Hello to everyone. I have been reading the threads on this forum for a while and enjoying every minute. I've been an avid Civil War reader for years, and have a modest gun collection. I finally made the decision to buy an original Civil War rifle musket, and chose the 1861 Springfield as the one I wanted. I just got one dated 1862, and I thought I would share a few photos of it. The rifling is excellent as is the wood.
1861-5.JPG
1861-1.jpg
1861-3.jpg
I am curious about the rear sight. It looks very old to me and has some surface pitting pretty much evenly on its exposed surfaces. I cannot see a 3 or a 5 on the two leaves. I looked closely with a jewelers loupe. There is a block M stamped on the left side of the sight base. Overall this musket is in very nice condition, and I am very happy with it. Sorry for the photos getting mixed up with the text.
 

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Joined
Apr 30, 2018
Messages
30
Location
West of the Rockies
#8
With a bit of Break Free and my fingernail I was able to get some of what I thought was pitting off of the surface of the sight leaves. Now, with a bit of imagination I think I might be able to see the extremely faint remnants of the 3 and the 5. But I am not sure. I do not know if all Springfield rear sights had yardage numbers. Hopefully someone will know.
 
Joined
Mar 12, 2018
Messages
335
Location
Mobile, AL
#9
Beautiful rifle - clean, crisp barrel markings, lockplate and cartouches. They don't get much cleaner than that. Downside is in that condition, it makes me wonder if it sat out the war in an armory rifle rack. Neither her nor there - pretty specimen you have there. The sights look correct.
 
Joined
Sep 14, 2017
Messages
469
#10
I picked up two 40x light-powered magnifying pieces - for $7 shipped on eBay. Opens up another world of fun with these oldies. One example was it saved me from ruining the tiny threaded rear sight screw on my Sharps, as the end of the thread had damage I couldn't see with my 4x. I aligned the thread for easy screw-in. Lots of worn/hidden roll-pressed markings became clear.

Does the rear sight have any model-matching markings, maybe on the underside? Condition match with the sight vs. the barrel and lockplate? Could it just be the metal for this and other rifle/carbine sights are just not heat treated and protected like the other parts (Damascus steel barrel?), and will simply be more susceptible to the elements?
 
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Joined
Dec 17, 2014
Messages
96
#15
Very nice musket! The condition of the rear sight just does not match the rest of the gun. I would pick up another original sight in better condition. Thanks for sharing photos of your Springfield with us.
 
Joined
Apr 30, 2018
Messages
30
Location
West of the Rockies
#16
Plymouth, I agree with you about the condition of the rear sight. I did get it cleaned up a bit after I sent the photo, but it still does not match the rest of the gun. I am working on getting one in better condition.
 
Joined
Sep 14, 2017
Messages
469
#18
Ricochet, if the screw loosens easily, maybe that's a sign it's not original. Still check the underside for any markings. Gunderson militaria or mcpheeters militaria might have a good condition sight, or eBay or GunBroker or gunsamerica.
 

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