SOLD FOR: $1925
Make: The gun has British proof marks, but does not have any Maker’s marking. The platinum blow-outs on the sides of the breech-plug do match with that of John Manton’s design.
Model: Percussion Double Gun
Serial Number: None
Year of Manufacture: Ca. 1855-1870s
Caliber: 12 Gauge
Action Type: Side-by-Side Muzzle-Loading Percussion Double Shotgun
Markings: The lockplates, hammers, top tang, guard and breech-plugs have decorative scroll engraving. There are decorative finials on the guard and the nosecap of the forend. The bottoms of the barrels have British proof marks.
Barrel Length: 30″
Sights / Optics: There is a bead at the front of the rib.
Weight: 7 lb., 7.5 oz.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stock is a one-piece checkered walnut with steel nosecap, straight wrist, straight comb, steel buttplate and a silver initial plate in the belly (not marked). There are nicks, scuffs and scratches scattered throughout. The checkering shows handling wear, but is generally well defined. The wood is slightly shy to the metal at some edges, possibly due to shrinkage from age. Drop at comb measures approximately 1 1/2?, drop at heel 2 1/4?. The LOP measures 14 1/4″ and 13 1/4″ from the fronts of the triggers to the back of the buttplate. The plate has mostly gone to a light patina with the right edge and the toe worn to white. There are some light nicks and scratches with infrequent spots of erosion on the plate. Overall, the stocks are in Very Good condition as Antique.
Type of Finish: Damascus & Case Color
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bores are light gray. There is light erosion scattered throughout with some minor pitting. There are nicks on the right muzzle.
Overall Condition: This shotgun retains approximately 3% of its metal finish. The exposed surfaces have mostly worn to white or gone to a light-moderate patina. There is a little bit of case color visible on the trigger plate around the tops of the triggers. There is finish loss along the sides of the barrels which appears to be from rubbing in the included case. There are scattered light nicks, scuffs, scratches and spots of surface erosion. The lockplates show operational wear from the hammers. The nipples show light wear, the flash-holes are not obstructed and the nipples thread in and out properly with the included tool. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this shotgun is in Good-Very Good condition as Antique (see Mechanics).
Mechanics: The left hammer will fall from half-cock when its trigger is depressed. Otherwise, the action functions correctly. The nipples are intact and unobstructed. The hammers have half-cock safety positions, but the left hammer will fall from half-cock when its trigger is depressed. We have not fired this shotgun. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This rifle comes in a wooden carry case which is english-fit for the barrel and stock assemblies as well as for the variety of accessories which are included. Accessories include G. & J.W. Hawksley powder flask, an un-branded shot flask, nipple pick/wrench tool, and a series of cleaning/maintenance tools and accessories including rods. Two cap tins are included, one’s label is illegible but the other is J. Goldmark’s made by the Winchester Repeating Arms Co. The case has scattered storage wear and discoloration, in about Good condition as Antique. The tools and accessories show wear and discoloration consistent with their age and use. Also included is a copy of “The Mantons: Gunmakers” by W. Keith Neal and D. H. L. Back.
Our Assessment: This is a 12 bore percussion double shotgun made in the mid-late 19th Century. The gun is in great shape for its age, retaining good bores and strong mechanics. With its included carry case and accessories, this will make a great addition to a fine European arms collection. The lack of a maker’s marking on this piece is intriguing, as it certainly seems to be the sort of work one would take pride in. There is an included book about The Mantons, famous British gunmakers, which may shed some light on the maker of this gun. It has platinum blow-outs on each bore which are typical of a Manton made gun, making its lack of a maker’s mark even more perplexing. Whether you’re adding to a collection or looking for an interesting research project, this is one gun you should let pass you by. Please see our photos and good luck!