Friday, March 11, 2022

Circa 1730 German Swivel Rifle

This is a very early Swivel Rifle in great "Unaltered Condition". The Rifle stock is made of very dense Walnut. The stock finish is original. It has a very early thick stock with a very unusual Two piece Butt plate. The front top finial bends only half the way back down the back floor rest, then it has a small toe plate on the back bottom with 1 1/4" gap between the two. There are two barrels, both are swamped being 28" long, they are both 62 cal. One rifled and one smooth bore. The rifled barrel has a beautiful rear site. The rifle has a Single set trigger, the real early feature is the 11" trigger pull, The Cheekpiece is very pronounced having a profile where the front drops below the stock profile, it has a deep grooved lower forstock molding. The Brass trimmed wooden patchbox has real unique Spring, it is hidden inside of the lid edge. Everything on the rifle ends in the same finial design, the earliest Kentucky Rifles were styled after these early German Guns. The reason I stressed in Unaltered Condition is that the very biggest amount of a Kentuckies today have re-cut engraving, Carving added, Inlays added, and refinished stocks. It is a shame, the people doing this "Damage" know better, but for added value, look the other way. I suggest to look back at what Joe Kindig said about care of the rifles. As of right now the great Rochester rifle is being reworked, that will end it being original instantly. What I have said here, is known by all, few follow the rule. This Swivel Early Rifle has come through time with only the Conversion to percussion and will remain that way.


Supplied photos and copy by Steve Boyleston.

1 comment:

  1. Very nice and attractive piece, and I certainly appreciate it being left alone! However this is not 1730s, this is full-blown rococo and the lack of engraving further points toward a ca. 1760s or 1770s dating. Perhaps someone like Ron Scott could further pin down the timeframe.


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