Serial Number: 86569
Year of Manufacture: 1882
Caliber: .38-40 W.C.F.
Action Type: Lever Action, Full Length Tube-Magazine Fed Rifle
Markings: The left shoulder of the barrel is marked “WINCHESTER’S REPEATING ARMS. NEW HAVEN, CONN. U.S.A. / KING’S IMPROVEMENT PATENTED PATENTED MARCH 29, 1866. OCTOBER 16, 1860. / .38 W.C.F.”, the top is marked with scripted “P” in oval, indicating a replaced barrel and “WP” in oval. The upper tang is marked “MODEL 1873”, the lower tang is marked with the serial number, the underside of the lifter is marked “.38 CAL”. The right flank of the butt stock is marked “C. M. SCOTT / T. (with a letter over struck with a *) S.”
Barrel Length: 24”, Octagonal, With Full Length Magazine Tube
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a German silver blade, slotted into a base that is dovetailed and screw-set to the barrel. The rear sight is a “U” notched semi-buckhorn leaf and slide step elevator, dovetailed onto the barrel.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stocks are a two piece fancy semi-gloss varnished set; the items have exceptional grain and sharp fit to the metal; given the sharp fit, we did not remove the butt stock to inspect tang markings. The stocks are not indicated in the included factory letter, nor is the shotgun-style butt plate but we believe these options to have been special ordered during production or when the rifle was re-barreled. The forend has a metal nose cap and shows some small chip losses around the cap and receiver; there are some gouges on the rear right flank, the stock shows other general handling marks as photographed. The butt stock has a strait wrist and sharp fit to the metal components. There are tiny chip losses by the upper tang and toe, the stock shows a few deep, but brief marks with scattered handling marks. The right side of the stock is stamped “C. M. SCOTT / T. (with a letter over struck with a *) S.”, the lettering is very sharp, deep and looks to have been done a very long time ago. The stocks are free from major damages and cracks. The LOP measures 13 1/8” from the front of the trigger to the back of the smooth metal shotgun-style butt plate; the plate has a small roll-over at the heel; the metal has about 55% of its finish remaining and shows general marks, with a slight shift to gray patina. The stocks rate in about Very Good overall condition for their age.
Type of Finish: Blued, with Case Hardened Receiver & Components
Finish Originality: The finish is original.
Bore Condition: The bore is bright and the rifling is sharply defined. There are a few spots of mild erosion.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 65% of its metal finish, most of which resides on the barrel; there are some areas of case coloring that are still discernible on the receiver and some of the protected parts of the components, please see our pictures. The balance of the finish shows general handling marks, the barrel shows scattered bruises and scrapes; there is a backwards “L” mark on the left side of the barrel. The receiver and its components have shifted to a mottled gray with spots of darkened patina and light pin prick erosion. The magazine tube has shifted to a plum-eggplant patina with general marks. The screw head slots range from light to mildly tooled but are highly serviceable. The markings are clear. Overall, this rifle rates in about Very Good condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. This rifle features a 2nd model dustcover and later lever latch. The barrel was replaced sometime after 1905. We have not fired this rifle. As with all previously owned firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: Included are printed newspaper articles that we accumulated during our perspective research on who C. M. Scott may have been. The documentation follows a gentleman who was a Captain in the territorial services in Kansas in the 1890’s. One document states that a C. M. Scott was a wealthy cattleman, territorial ranger and farmer in Arkansas City, Kansas in 1893. The gentleman traveled with the famous “Pawnee Bill” during a trip to negotiate with the Cherokee in one exploit. Another article states that Mr. Scott had run for senator in 1900. The third article from the Arkansas City Weekly Traveler notes that Scott had come back from the territories on October 27, 1880. Other paperwork is included, which has Scott’s documentation of travels into the Texas territories and another that states that Scott was appointed an agent by the Kansas Governor to Native American tribes. Also included is a copy of a Cody factory letter which gives a shipment date of March 20, 1882, order number 31701, also reflecting a 24” octagonal barrel and case hardened receiver. The item is in Excellent condition.
Our Assessment: From Wikipedia “The Model 1873 was one of the most successful Winchester rifles of its day, gaining the reputation as “The Gun that Won the West”. Still an icon in the modern day, it was manufactured between 1873 and 1919. Originally chambered for the .44-40 cartridge, it was later produced in .38-40 and .32-20, all of which were also popular handgun cartridges of the day, allowing users to carry just one type of ammunition. The Model 1873 was produced in three variations: a 24-inch barrel rifle, 20-inch barrel carbine, and a “musket” (a term that, at the time, denoted a full length military-style stock, not to be confused with a true smoothbore musket).” This is a 24” octagonal 1873, made in 1882, with about 65% of its blue and case hardened finish remaining. The bore is still bright with sharp rifling and was a later replacement, according to the oval “P” marking. The stocks have exceptional fit to the metal components and have fancy grain, with brilliant hue. The butt plate is smooth metal, in the shotgun-style. The right side of the butt stock is stamped “C.M. SCOTT” with “T”, another letter that we could not fully make out (perhaps a + or Y?), that is struck out and “S”; the lettering is very sharp, deep and looks to have been done a very long time ago. The rifle, having special features and having been re-barreled, gives us the sense that whoever owned it was proud to do so, probably had a long history with the item and wanted to keep it running. Included are printouts of newspapers which track a C. M. Scott of Kansas who pretty much fits the bill for an owner of such a rifle. We are unable to determine 100% if the man in the articles, who was a Captain in the territorial rangers, a wealthy cattleman and farmer, was he original owner, but his date of birth in 1836 and death in 1910 gives us a feeling we may be onto something here. According to our research, C. M. Scott was also Arkansas City’s first newspaper editor and was a Native American agent for the governor of Kansas, who created a lasting relationship with the tribes. Another group of paperwork is a printout of Scott’s that were documented down into the Texas territories. The included copy of a Cody letter does not indicate a shipment location, but gives a shipment date in 1882, also reflecting the finish and serial number of this rifle. What is interesting about our research finds is that the initials “C.M.” are never broadened, the gentleman had always publicly gone by “C.M. Scott”. All said and done, this rifle must have seen some extremely interesting times and should be a welcomed addition to any Winchester collection. Please see our pictures and good luck.