Breechldrs Sharps New Model 1863 Serial Number identification help

Jobe Holiday

Sergeant Major
Mar 1, 2010
The Perpetually Frozen North
It will take the luck of winning a Billion Dollar Power Ball Lottery to realistically put an actual user/owner's name to those initials. Logically, you will have to explore post ACW names, because the cartridge converted arms were completely refinished during the alteration process. Deep carving like yours exhibits would most likely have had the forearm replaced.

Capt. Dave

Mar 18, 2019
Good morning Jobe, Thank you for your thoughtful response. I agree, it appears my desire to connect the dots and identify an actual user/owner's name is a near impossible task. I was doing so in the interest of historical and educational purposes for our Sea Scouts. You make an excellent point that the initials were probably carved following the alteration process, as they would likely have replaced the forearm if the initials were there when they did the alteration.
With only initials, it appears that searching for ACW soldiers, US Calvary or Texas Rangers to mention a few, is truly an impossible task... but worth a try. Thanks again!


Apr 25, 2020
I am trying (I realize it may well be a total shot in the dark) to identify the individual who carved the large initials "HLK" in the foreshock my Sharps New Model 1863 Conversion carbine with the Serial Number C, 16731 (116,731). Based on what I've learned, the Sharps company reached 100,000 in 1863, they incorporated the Roman numeral "C" for 100,000 and started to renumber with 1. So that would mean mine is the 116,731 Sharps produced. Having said that, it appears it was manufactured in 1863 after they reached 100,000 or in early 1864.

The initials could have, perhaps, been carved by the first one to use it or someone at anytime thereafter. With the advent of Sharps being used in the Civil War and by the US Calvary thereafter and in particular the Indian Wars, as well as many being used by the Texas Rangers, does anyone know any recourses where I might research the serial number of the Sharps and the initials "HLK"?

I did reach out to Dr. Richard J. Labowskie and he has no record of my Sharps Serial Number. Thanks for any help you folks can share with me!
Very nice piece! Unfortunately very little SRS SN info anywhere near it -- only two numbers reported in that thousand number range:

C16195 Carbine 04/00/65 Co. A 1st MD PHB (Potomac Home Brigade) Cav.
C16911 Carbine 10/00/64 Co. I 1st NY Mounted Rifles

Keep up the good work with the Sea Scouts!


Apr 25, 2020
I was looking for more information about my Sharp's Carbine Ser. # C5178. Can someone please direct me to help. Thanks, JWD

No hit in SRS. Closest SNs are:

C5142 Carbine 04/00/65 Co. A 1st MD PHB (Potomac Home Brigade) Cav.
C5200 Carbine 04/01/65 Co. D 1st Colo. Vol. Cav.