Captured/Surrendered confederate arms

redbob

Major
Regtl. Staff Shiloh 2020
Joined
Feb 18, 2013
Location
Hoover, Alabama
They were either destroyed or stored in arsenals or other storage facilities until they became obsolete/surplus at which time they were sold to dealers such as Bannerman's. No doubt, some were taken home by Union personnel as souvenirs. AS the cap and ball muzzle loaders were already well on their way to being obsolete by the end of the Civil War, militarily they didn't have much value.
 

Craig L Barry

Sergeant Major
Joined
Jan 5, 2010
Location
Murfreesboro, TN
Using the search function, this was previously posted on here back a few years ago:

Actually, a great number of CS weapons turned in at Appomattox were destroyed or scrapped so they would not further glut the swollen secondary arms market. See the following from "The Great Gun Merchant" (American Heritage Magazine Vol 25 # 5 Aug 1974):

"Arms meant more to Frank Bannerman than profits alone. The federal government had a practice of smashing surplus arms under heavy hammers before auctioning them. This destruction scandalized Bannerman:

We remember at the close of the Civil War, making the highest bid at Government sale, on a lot of 11,000 old guns, "veterans of many wars," part of the lot surrendered by General Lee, classified "Rebel." The U.S. Ordnance Officer refused to accept our bid for the guns, alleging "that Bannerman would repair the guns and put them into serviceable order, and they would then enter into competition with the now obsolete guns that the Government had for sale." So this lot of "Rebel" guns, which contained many heirlooms of patriots who had fought with Lee and Jackson, was consigned to the fire, and the old burnt locks and barrels sold to us later as scrap iron."
 

FedericoFCavada

First Sergeant
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Location
San Antonio, Texas
By no means many in the greater scheme of tens or hundreds of thousands of ex-Confederate arms, but by a happy coincidence, the 3-band Pattern 1853 rifle musket was also the standard service rifle of Mexico. So, as a result, stands of arms seized in Louisiana and elsewhere were turned over to the forces of Benito Juarez fighting against Mexican conservatives, and French, Austrian, and even Belgian troops trying to install Maximilian von Hapsburg as Emperor of the Mexicans... At least one elite group of Juaristas had ex-Union blue sack coats with the eagle buttons, and privately purchased a bunch of Henry lever-action rifles.

Union sack coats and roundabouts were frequently given to Indians confined to reservations...
 

Jeff in Ohio

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 17, 2015
The higher quality enfields found a good market overseas - the British Model 1853 was the AK47 of its day, used around the world, and wanted by many.
 

rebracer

Sergeant
Joined
Jan 29, 2014
Location
Southern Louisiana
The higher quality enfields found a good market overseas - the British Model 1853 was the AK47 of its day, used around the world, and wanted by many.
I have read that a decent number of Confederate used Enfields ended up in Afghanistan. Not sure of the number though. I have always been curious if there were any just laying around somewhere. There was even a report of a crate or two of enfield tools being found over there back during the 2000s, but these were probably never tied to actual US Civil War arms. Still interesting though.

The William B. Edwards book Civil War Guns, actually has an entire chapter about the fate of the surplus arms. When I read it, I had no idea of this part of the story.
 

johan_steele

Regimental Armorer
Retired Moderator
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
South of the North 40
I have read that a decent number of Confederate used Enfields ended up in Afghanistan. Not sure of the number though. I have always been curious if there were any just laying around somewhere. There was even a report of a crate or two of enfield tools being found over there back during the 2000s, but these were probably never tied to actual US Civil War arms. Still interesting though.

The William B. Edwards book Civil War Guns, actually has an entire chapter about the fate of the surplus arms. When I read it, I had no idea of this part of the story.
I doubt any ended up in the Stan. There has been a lot of effort trying to connect Enfields brought back from Afghanistan to the CS to add value to them.
 

CW Appraiser

Cadet
Joined
Apr 25, 2020
I am very interested in knowing of US records of inventories of rifles, muskets, carbines taken at various CS armories at war's end. I am sure there detailed reports out there. There are many C&R arms that show up in almost new condition as CS armory refurbished. I would love to find the reports such that possibly the C&R proofs can be identified. Steve Knott in his book "Captured & Collected Confederate Reissued Firearms" has answered many questions but more need to be researched.
 

Jeff in Ohio

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 17, 2015
I am very interested in knowing of US records of inventories of rifles, muskets, carbines taken at various CS armories at war's end. I am sure there detailed reports out there. There are many C&R arms that show up in almost new condition as CS armory refurbished. I would love to find the reports such that possibly the C&R proofs can be identified. Steve Knott in his book "Captured & Collected Confederate Reissued Firearms" has answered many questions but more need to be researched.

Now that I know what to look for, I've uncovered a half dozen of these Captured and Collected aka C&R arms in my collection - and as you say, two are in crisp, almost new condition. One if a Model 1842, Springfield 1853 dated lock, Harpers Ferry Barrel (date not clear), and it has two "Q" stamps, almost on top of each other, with the stamp rotated a quarter turn between the two strikes. The other is a Barnett Model1853 with a confederate view circle cartouche on the top of the comb just ahead of the butt plate tang, and an "8" stamped ahead of the guard. This 8 is the same size and location as the more common letter stamps.
 

Papabyrd

Private
Joined
Sep 28, 2021
I have read that a decent number of Confederate used Enfields ended up in Afghanistan. Not sure of the number though. I have always been curious if there were any just laying around somewhere. There was even a report of a crate or two of enfield tools being found over there back during the 2000s, but these were probably never tied to actual US Civil War arms. Still interesting though.

The William B. Edwards book Civil War Guns, actually has an entire chapter about the fate of the surplus arms. When I read it, I had no idea of this part of the story.
There are two crates of Enfields in the tower of London with CSA branded into the side of the box. The war ended before they were sent and were already paid for so they just stayed in England. I heard the Sons of Confederate veterans was trying to get them to put in the Confederate Battle Abby in Richmond Va.
 
Joined
Oct 14, 2015
Location
NJ
I am very interested in knowing of US records of inventories of rifles, muskets, carbines taken at various CS armories at war's end. I am sure there detailed reports out there. There are many C&R arms that show up in almost new condition as CS armory refurbished. I would love to find the reports such that possibly the C&R proofs can be identified. Steve Knott in his book "Captured & Collected Confederate Reissued Firearms" has answered many questions but more need to be researched.
I just got that book this week after finding a “Z” stamped on the belly of my 1863 Springfield.
It is a very interesting book.
 

rebracer

Sergeant
Joined
Jan 29, 2014
Location
Southern Louisiana
I just got that book this week after finding a “Z” stamped on the belly of my 1863 Springfield.
It is a very interesting book.
Yes, excellent book. It focuses on the eastern repair depots as this is where almost all of the documentation exists, but does mention the western repair depots such as the one in Holly Springs MS. To the best of my knowledge there are no clear records of what was stamped on repair arms in the west. I would be highly interested to know about this as there has to be some arms still in existence that went through the Holly Springs repair facility.

I beleive the book mentions that most of the arms collected off of the western battlefields went through the various eastern repair depots as the war went on.
 
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