3-Band Percussion Musket

Created on October 13th 2014

Tower percussion Musket.

C.S. Musket 001

Approximately .60 bore.  Total Length 55.1/4″.  Barrel length 39.1/4″.  Length of pull 14.1/4″.  The barrel is secured by three steel bands all marked with Enfield inspection marks.  Under the barrel is the cleaning rod which measures 39″ in length exactly.  It has the large serrated pierced head and the swelling to hold it in place about 8″ from the end.  There are also inspectors marks found between the swelling and the jag.

C.S. Musket 002

The full length stock is in very good condition, showing clear grain and a polished finish overall.  The fore-end is finished of with a brass end-cap.  The three barrel bands are held in position by their own springs on the RHS along the for-end.  The lock mounted on the RH of the stock is engraved with a strong Crown over “V.R”  Forward of the cocking piece is “1857 / TOWER” meaning this musket was assembled by the Tower of London armouries in 1857.  Forward of the Tower marking are two  inspectors markings.  The flat-faced lock is double border engraved in the same manner as the cock.  This is an early cocking piece with the straight back to the thumb piece.  The cock having some fine checkering upon it to aid grip.  The lock is a standard military two position lock, with a strong mainspring and a positive action.  Wood to metal fit is very very good with a minor splinter above the crown, where the lock may possibly have been out in its service lifetime.  There is a chain and nipple protector secured just in front of the trigger guard.

C.S. Musket 008C.S. Musket 009C.S. Musket 010 C.S. Musket 012

Single percussion nipple and bolster mounted at the breech.  The back end of the barrel shows multiple inspectors marks, but most obviously, the opposing arrows ” sold out of service” mark and inspection stamps.  Single large flat-headed screw through the breech tang, securing the barrel.  To the obverse of the lock are the two steel securing screws in brass cups. On the same side, towards the rear, is the name of the stockmaker or supplier which could be, “G.PARKER” but although deeply struck, is almost unreadable and a “C.S.” stamping?   This is the other most noticeable marking that appears over the weapon; (metalwork and stock)   –  the “C.S.” stampings.  They are to be found on the stock in multiple positions and on the brass and steel fittings – meaning unknown!

C.S. Musket 014C.S. Musket 017C.S. Musket 005C.S. Musket 019

One omission that looks to have occurred in the early days of the muskets service life is, any form of rear sights.  On a simple musket one would expect the basic stand-up fixed open “V” notch.  There is no sign of such a sight.  On a basic rifle one would expect the basic ramp and ladder sights.  There is in fact a trace of such a fitting.  This “shadow” of the sight base is however almost just as corroded as the rest of the barrel.  It has suffered the same amount wear and built a very similar degree of patina on the surface. On close inspection another “C.S” marking is at the center of the patch.  It is my opinion that those sights were removed in the same period the musket picked up its strange “C.S” markings.  The reason as to why these sights were removed one can only speculate.

C.S. Musket 018C.S. Musket 022

There are behind the trigger guard several inspection markings and the following; “In Gt” – meaning unknown.    On the LHS of the butt-stock there are numerous other markings most noticeably a large “W.D”  which has been over struck with an uneven double opposing sold out of service mark.  Next to that is a large clearly impressed ”  ’ 2 NEW”,  At 90 degrees to the last is a clear serifed “70″ with “C.S.” above and below.  The last is clearly repeated on the brass butt-plate tang.  Condition and fit of the butt-plate is very good.  The “C.S.” is repeated on the brass trigger guard.

C.S. Musket 027C.S. Musket 025

The weapon is smooth bored – perhaps another clue to its lineage?  The bore is somewhat pitted, but what would one expect!   We can only draw our own conclusions and be happy with our own theories.  In the end it is what it is – a fine piece of history  that can be held in the hand.

C.S. Musket 006

£ 1275.

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