SOLD FOR: $19,972.00
Make: New Haven Arms Co.
Model: 1860 Henry
Serial Number: 341
Year of Manufacture: 1861 (“The Henry Rifle” by Les Quick, pg. 131)
Caliber: .44 Henry Rimfire
Action Type: Lever Action with Slotted Full-Length Tubular Magazine
Markings: The top of the barrel is marked “HENRY’S PATENT OCT. 16, 1860 / MANUFACT’D BY THE NEW HAVEN ARMS CO. NEW HAVEN, CT.” forward of the rear sight dovetail. The serial number “341” is marked on the top of the barrel at the rear, the left of the bottom tang, the heel of the buttplate and on each of the buttstock and buttplate mounting screws on their shanks. The rear face of the loading gate is marked “14” on one side and “8” on the other. The top of the barrel, under the loading gate, is marked “148”. The rear face of the follower is not marked. The top of the wrist in the inlet for the top tang has been relieved between the front screw hold and the middle one drilled for the reinforcing screw, removing the serial marking which was there.
Barrel Length: 24″, Octagonal with integral rounded magazine tube.
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a german silver blade held in a slotted base at the front of the barrel. The rear sight is a folding ladder sight that is dovetailed into the barrel. When the ladder is folded down, there is a “V” notch sight presented. When the ladder is folded up, the sight presented is a “V” notch on the top of the slider, a tiny “V” notch at the top of the ladder and another tiny “V” notch at the very bottom of the ladder. The left rear face of the ladder is marked “2-8” with “900” at the top notch. There is another dovetail in the top of the receiver behind the ejection port.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stock is a one-piece smooth walnut with a straight grip, “perch” slightly curved belly and a crescent shaped brass buttplate that is rounded (instead of sharp) at the heel. The buttplate has a spring-loaded hinged door in the center for access to cleaning equipment stored in the butt (none included). The stock has several scattered light compressions, bruises, scuffs and drag lines. There is a crack down the center of the wrist at the front mounting screw hole on the top, concealed while assembled. Due to this, a reinforcing screw has been added between the two top-tang mounting screws. The LOP measures 13 3/8” from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The buttplate shows a mustard colored patina with multiple light nicks, dings and spots of light tarnish. The buttplate is in about Very Good condition. The stock is in about Very Good overall condition as Antique.
Type of Finish: The barrel is blued. The lever, hammer and trigger are case colored and the receiver, carrier and magazine follower are brass.
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is gray with heavy wear in the rifling. The lands are mostly bright with dark grooves and scattered spots of light pitting.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 0% of its metal finish. The receiver has developed a mustard colored patina and the barrel, hammer, and lever show finish loss with a mottling of dark spots of light erosion. Thebarrel has scattered light nicks and dings. The sideplates and receiver have some scattered light scratches, spots of dark tarnish, light nicks and dings and some tool marks around the screw heads. The hammer-end of the striker is marred and peened. The screw heads range from sharp to disfigured with useable slots. The markings are clear. This rifle rates in about Fair-Good condition (See Mechanics).
Mechanics: The striker-head portion of the bolt with the firing pins is missing. The magazine spring does not compress enough to open the loading gate. Otherwise, the action functions correctly. The hammer was not designed with a half-cock safety. We have not fired this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: None
Our Assessment: The Henry rifle was designed in 1860 and held 15 brass cartridges in its magazine. Sources aren’t clear about when it actually began production, but by 1866 it ceased production with about 14,000 having been manufactured. At that time, New Haven Arms became Winchester Repeating Arms Company and the Henry evolved into the M1866 Winchester. A few thousand Henry Rifles were purchased by the Union during the Civil War and many more were privately purchased by Union soldiers. The rifle quickly became known as the “rifle that you could load on Sunday and shoot all week long”. We can’t imagine what it must have been like for the Confederate troops to have faced these rapid firing rifles armed with only their muzzleloaders, but because the Henry wasn’t purchased in large numbers by the Union, there were only a few Civil War battles where the Henry played a decisive role, one of which was the Battle of Franklin. Unfortunately for Custer and his Springfield Trapdoor armed troops, a few Henry rifles also fell into the possession of the Sioux and Cheyenne troops at the Battle of the Little Big Horn in 1876. This is an early rifle 1861 and its metal parts have not been refinished. It has matching serial- and assembly-numbered parts. The top tang inlet for the stock has had its serial marking removed, but given the fit of the buttplate and the serial-numbered screws timed correctly with the slots in-line with the bore, we suspect that it is also original. The edges on the barrel show light wear and the markings are clear. The rifle is in about Fair-Good overall condition and would be easily Good condition but for the missing part of the bolt and the damage to the stroker. The bore is gray with heavy wear in the rifling and a spots of light pitting. The action functions correctly, though the magazine spring does not compress far enough to allow loading and with the missing portion of the bolt it will not fire. The rifle has early features such as an oval, non-locking lever, small-tab magazine follower, receiver dovetail for a rear sight and hand-fit serialized stock mounting screws. This is an all-correct Henry rifle that really ought to please the collectors out there. Please see our photos and good luck!
CA Legal or CA Private Party Transferable: This Antique rifle can be transferred/sold in California.