Sunday, November 20, 2016

Model 1853 Sharps Shotgun

This is likely the only high grade 24 bore Sharps Model 1853 shotgun ever manufactured. Sharps expert Frank Sellers only recorded two total 24 bore Model 1853's in his book "Sharps Firearms" and listed only one of those as "Fine Engraved." He notes that at least a few high grade guns are listed incorrectly in the factory records as plain. This is a late example and would certainly fall within the "Extra Fine Engraved" category and has the exact same gold inlaid barrel address and scrollwork pictured on page 59 of his book where he notes that this inlay is found "on the highest grade of Model 1853" shotguns. The scroll patterns covers the 9 inches of the breech section of the barrel, and "Sharps Rifle Manufg Co. Hartford, Conn." is at the center in Gothic script. The barrel also has one thin and one broad band of gold inlay at the muzzle and is equipped with a post front sight with small bead. Another very similar gun is pictured on page 46 of William Hosley's "Colt: The Making of an American Legend." Note that this shotgun and the pictured example both have the same pewter forend cap as well. The action, buttplate, and lever display beautiful engraving patterns consisting primarily of floral scrollwork on nearly all of the visible surfaces. 


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