Make: W.W. Greener
Model: Box-Lock Dual Trigger, Double Barrel Shotgun
Serial Number: 52247
Year of Manufacture: According to http://www.doublegunshop.com/dgsnos2.htm serial numbers ranged from 50,911 in 1902, to 58,536 in 1915, putting the DOM towards the earlier years of that range.
Gauge: 12 Gauge, 2 5/8” Shells
Action Type: Side by Side, Hammerless, Box-Lock, Dual Non-Selective Trigger Shotgun with Ejectors
Markings: The top of the barrel set rib, underside of the forend bracket, and top of the receiver have the number “1” gold filled. The top of the rib is marked “W.W. GREENER. MAKER. 68, HAYMARKET LONDON. WORKS ST MARY’S SQUARE. BIRMINGHAM.” The top of the forend bracket is marked “patent / 1292 / 548 / 52247”; the bracket metal is case colored, the exterior metal surfaces have exquisite bouquet, scroll and floriated engraving, also found on the barrel set. The underside of both barrels are marked crown over “B”, “TRADE / MARK” with an elephant logo and the serial number; the underside of the left barrel also has a “K”. The underside flat, on both sides, is marked “NITRO PROOF / 15/1 / SHOT 1 ¼ OZ / MAXM CHOKE” with “12 / C” in diamond and crossed scepters with crown over “4”. The watertable of the receiver is marked with two sets of crossed scepters with crown over “4”, an elephant logo and the serial number; the firewall is marked “W.W.G. / ENGLAND”. The left side of the butt stock wrist has a cutout with a safety switch; the rear face of the switch is marked “SAFE” in gold, the safety plate has fine engraving with a bird sitting on a branch. The left side of the receiver features a pointer and four birds in flight in a field, the right has a setter and bird. The underside has a pigeon in flight, the trigger guard has two water fowl in flight. The receiver and its components are superbly bouquet, scroll, floriated and rosette engraved; please see our pictures of this stunning shotgun! The lower long tang is marked with the serial number. The belly of the stock has a silver plated oval insert that has not been engraved. The recoil pad is marked “MERSHON. CO. INC. / GLENDALE, CALF U.S.A. / KERR’S / BEVERLY HILLS, CALIF. / TR MARK REG / PATENT PEND / SKEET / L”. The included takedown luggage case with an outer brown fabric wrap, which has a leather patch with gold-leaf lettering of “F.C.W.” there is a sticker that reads “WHITE STAR LINE” with a hand written “R J” (some of the sticker is chipped off) “LKER” (Walker). A second White Star Line passenger sticker is found on the underside of the outer brown fabric wrap that has the initials “PJ” and “WALKER”. Portions of the sticker are chipped off, we could make out “MADK. ST10” on one of the lines; the line marked “SAILING” is hand written “10TH”…the rest is faded or chipped away, the line marked “DECK” is hand marked “D”. The line marked “Room” appears to be marked “121 / 105”. The line marked “Berth” is not filled in. The inside of the case lid has a beautifully preserved burgundy colored label with gold leaf text reading “W. W. GREENER / Gun, Rifle , and Ammunition Maker / (WINNER AT ALL THE GREAT LONDON GUN TRIALS) / PRIZE WORKS / St. Mary’s Square, Birmingham, / AND / 68, HAYMARKET, LONDON, S.W.” The oiler is marked “W.W. GREENER / LONDON & BIRMINGHAM”, the two snap cap head stamps read “W.W. GREENER / NO / 12 / LONDON & BIRMINGHAM”. The bore brush cylinder is marked “W.W.G.”. The handle of the case has a vintage parcel stub that reads “PARCEL CHECK / STUB / Form 819 B / 10-25 / 665970 / Leave Stub on Parcel When Delivered”. The carbon scraping tools are marked “W.W.G.”
Barrel Length: 30”, with solid, concave rib.
Choke: The right barrel is fix choked Improved Cylinder (0.721”), the left is fix choked about Full (0.691”).
Sights / Optics: This shotgun is mounted with a steel bead, which is screwed into the solid, concave rib.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are a fancy matte-finished burled walnut set. The splinter forend has a gold filled “1”, which is found on top of the receiver and top rear of the barrel set. The stock has some small chip losses on the upper right side, with some areas of scuff compression to the checkers, please see our photographs. The butt stock has a wrap-around checkered strait English wrist, with diamond-shaped ebony inserts on the flanks of the wrist; the left side of the wrist has a cutout with a safety switch; the rear face of the switch is marked “SAFE” in gold, the safety plate has fine engraving with a bird sitting on a branch; the belly has a silver-plated oval metal insert which has not been engraved. The stock shows some scattered scuff and compression marks, without any cracks or notable losses. The wood to metal fit on both stocks is superb. Drop at comb is 1 ½”, drop at heel is 2 1/16”. The stock is slightly cast-off for right handed shooters. The LOP measures 13 ¾” from the front of the rear trigger and 14 ¾” from the front of the forward trigger to the back of the brown ventilated rubber shotgun-style recoil pad; the pad is set with a white and black spacer and shows some moderate compression in the vents; the material is no longer supple; the pad is in about Fine condition as not original to the shotgun. The OAL of the shotgun is 46 ½”. The stocks rate in about Fine overall condition.
Type of Finish: Blued & Case Colored, with Elaborate Engraving
Finish Originality: All Original
Bore Condition: The bores are light gray with some patches of extremely persistent fowling towards the muzzle of both barrels. There is light to moderate depth pin prick erosion in both bores near the chambers, becoming lighter and less frequent towards the muzzles.
Overall Condition: This shotgun retains about 70% of its metal finish. The barrel set shows scuff marks, a few scattered shallow dings on the rib and a few instances of shallow scrapes and scratches. Portions of the barrel set have spots of surface etching of shallow depth with traces of brown patina. The case coloring on the forend bracket items is no longer present on the exterior surfaces, however the top portion of the bracket still retains some coloring. The receiver’s case coloring has decent retention on the left side and rear scallops, with some still clinging on the right side, in protected areas. The upper tang has coloring underneath the top lever, which shows some expected handling wear. The left side of the receiver shows some shallow scratch marks in a cluster, the lower tang has linear scuffs that may have been incurred from vigorous cleaning at some point. The belly of the stock has an oval metal insert that looks to be silver plated; the silver has shifted to a natural dark patina, there are very shallow compression marks on the insert. The gold-filled “1” marks have crisp definition. The left side wrist-mounted safety plate’s bluing has expected wear from normal use, the “S” of “SAFE” (gold plated) is slightly faded, the other letters have crisp definition. The screw slots are sharp but for the top lever screw head which has light tooling; the screw heads have rich engraving that is crisply defined. The markings are crisp. Overall, this shotgun rates in about Fine condition.
Mechanics: The shotgun has dual non-selective triggers and an automatic ‘return to safe’ feature when the action is opened. The right ejector functions correctly, the left ejector fails to activate upon opening the action. Both triggers are crisp and the firing pins struck our snap caps with authority. The shotgun weighs 6lbs 13oz. 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:
Included is a beautiful wood takedown storage case that has a brown leather and fabric outer wrapping, which has a leather patch that has gold-leaf lettering of “F.C.W.” There is a sticker that reads “WHITE STAR LINE” with hand written “R J” (some of the sticker is chipped off) “LKER” (Walker). A second White Star Line passenger sticker is found on the underside of the outer brown fabric wrap that has (hand written) initials “PJ” and “WALKER”. Portions of this sticker are chipped off, we could make out “MADK. ST10” on one of the lines; the line marked “SAILING” is hand written “10TH”…the rest is faded or chipped away, the line marked “DECK” is hand marked “D”. The line marked “Room” appears to be marked “121 / 105”. The line marked “Berth” is not filled in; the hand writing is vintage and shows some fading with age. The leather straps have wrinkling, one of the buckle straps is missing, the brown fabric has some torn corners and discoloration from age; the top portion comes off of the lid freely. The outer leather and cloth wrapped portion is in Good Plus to Very Good condition for its age.
The leather-bound wooden case has brass corner tabs (which display verdigris and natural patina), a leather carrying handle (which has a vintage parcel stub that reads “PARCEL CHECK / STUB / Form 819 B / 10-25 / 665970 / Leave Stub on Parcel When Delivered”) with brass fixtures and a brass push-button lock, one key is provided with the case. The inside of the case is green felt lined with a beautifully preserved burgundy colored label with gold leaf text reading “W. W. GREENER / Gun, Rifle , and Ammunition Maker / (WINNER AT ALL THE GREAT LONDON GUN TRIALS) / PRIZE WORKS / St. Mary’s Square, Birmingham, / AND / 68, HAYMARKET, LONDON, S.W.” The inside of the lid has a small square patch repair, the lid has compression marks and discoloration from contact with its stored items; the exterior surfaces of the leather bound wood case have some chip losses and scuffs but is in about Fine overall condition given its age.
The lower inner half is sectioned off and houses a fine cleaning brush constructed from bone and horse hair. Two snap caps (“W.W. GREENER / NO / 12 / LONDON & BIRMINGHAM”), a leather washer cleaning insert, horse-hair cleaning insert (which is housed in a metal cylindrical tube marked “W.W.G.”), oil applicator which is screwed into a large oiler (marked “W.W. GREENER / LONDON & BIRMINGHAM”), two horn-handle metal carbon scrapers (marked “W.W.G.”), a three piece metal tipped ebony cleaning rod assembly and a horse hair chamber brush that has a metal shank and horn handle. The horn handled items have small chip losses but no major damages; the other items have natural verdigris that we did not clean off for originality’s sake. All of the items rate in about Very Good Plus to Fine condition. Two yellow cloth receiver and barrel set sleeves are provided that show age; the receiver sleeve has a small torn area; these items are in Very Good condition. Two hand-woven cloth items and two bore mops are included, in about Very Good condition.
Our Assessment: This lot is for a simply breathtaking W. W. Greener double barrel box-lock shotgun in 12 gauge. As if the shotgun itself was not so impressive, a leather and cloth bound Greener takedown case is also provided; the outer wrapped cloth has two White Star Line passenger stickers, the handle has a parcel check stub; the stickers are for an R.J. and P.J. Walker; the cloth wrap has a large leather patch that has “F.C.W.” in gold leaf lettering. The sticker on the underside of the outer wrap has a “SAILING” date of “10th..” the rest of this line is faded and chipped away as is a good portion of both stickers. According to our research on the White Star Line (http://www.gjenvick.com/PassengerLists/WhiteStarLine/#axzz4CQ23iK8w), only two ships sailed out on the “10th” of any year from 1896 onward, those being the R.M.S. Titanic (which sailed in 1912) and the R.M.S. Baltic (which sailed in 1922). According to the passenger lists, of the two ships, only one Walker was to be found and he sailed on the maiden voyage of the Titanic. We hit a snag in our research, as the gentleman’s name on the passenger list was an William Anderson Walker, which does not correspond to the initials on the stickers. We could not find any other R.J., F.C. or P.J. Walkers on the other passenger lists which may indicate that different aliases were used at different points. We cannot confirm whether this item was ever on the fated ship, but we do know that Mr. W. A. Walker perished during the sinking and we find it hard to believe that his shotgun would have survived the incident. All being said, we can narrow the date of manufacture of the shotgun down to the very early 1900’s, as recorded W.W. Greener serial numbers were 50,911 in 1902, to 58,536 in 1915. This shotgun is in Fine condition with about 70% of its blued and case colored finishes remaining; the surfaces have exceptional detailed bouquet, scroll and floriated engraving, the number “1” with gold inlay on the receiver, top of the barrel set and on the underside of the forend bracket is found, indicating there may have been more than one shotgun that was ordered by the original owner. The stocks are burled walnut, showing a few minor chip losses on the top upper right side and some scattered light to moderate depth handling marks infrequently found on the other surfaces. The recoil pad is a later replacement from Kerr’s Sport Shop of Beverly Hills, California, which was founded in the mid 1930’s. The bores are light gray with some patches of extremely persistent fowling towards the muzzle of both barrels. There is light to moderate depth pin prick erosion in both bores near the chambers, becoming lighter and less frequent towards the muzzles. The left ejector does not function, the right ejector tossed our snap cap with authority; both triggers have crisp pulls and the action comes together with no perceptible play. A full W.W. Greener marked cleaning kit is included, along with a receiver and barrel set cloth sleeve pair. This shotgun and its case have sparked many a debate in our shop and we have exhausted the limits of our research; no additional information could be provided from the consignor, however this lot is sure to inspire many thought provoking conversations to come and is truly one of a kind. What can be assumed is that whoever purchased this set must have been well-to-do and certainly had taste! Please see our pictures and good luck.