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Thread: Converted US Musket with unknown marks

  1. #1
    cannonmn is offline
    Visitor (non-N-SSA Member)
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Chesapeake - Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio

    Converted US Musket with unknown marks

    Please take a look at the photos of the interesting marks on this musket and see if you can help the museum interpret them. This is on the Company of Military Historians forum, here: ... /read/9087

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Savannah, GA
    Deep South - Georgia, Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi and Texas

    Re: Converted US Musket with unknown marks

    After having read the recent article by Charles Pate on inspection marks of M1860 Colt revolvers, also presented on CMH, I’m not certain that the “BLDT” isn’t “EL DT”. The DT could be Lt. Daniel Taylor, USA, found on Starr muskets, 1831-50, or possibly Daniel Tyler, found on Waters muskets, 1831-34. The only Lt Daniel Taylor listed as an officer in the U.S. Army before the Civil War was a former sergeant in the Light Dragoons (1813), commissioned in the 42nd Infantry (1814) and honorably discharged in June 1815. Similarly, I note a Daniel Tyler of Connecticut who entered USMA in 1816, commissioned a 2LT of Light Artillery (1819), afterwards transferred to 5th U.S. Infantry (1821), only to later transfer to 1st Regt. Artillery less than a month later, and resigned in 1834. He received commission as colonel of 1st Connecticut (1861) and BGen of Connecticut Volunteers (1862), resigned 1864 and died 30 Nov 1882.

    The “EL” could be Elijah Lyon, of Massachusetts, who was a sergeant in Light Artillery (1808), afterwards commissioned as 3LT of Light Artillery (1813), was brevetted to captain 1827 for 10 years in one grade, transferred to 3rd Regt Artillery in 1829, and died 1843. And while some may find the “GN” somewhat mysterious, while its difficult to identify officers who served in the Ordnance Department as lieutenants and captains, I noted there was a George Nauman, from Pennsylvania, who entered USMA in 1819, and was commissioned a 2LT in 1st Regt of Artillery in 1823, later served in Mexican War and the Civil War, promoted of colonel in August 1863 just 10 days before his death.

    If you are simply looking for the initials of R.A. officers, given that many of the later Ordnance officers like those mentioned in Pate's article: Major William A. Thorton, commander of Waterviet Arsenal (USMA Class of 1825), his successor at Waterviet, Captain Robert Henry Kirkwood Whiteley (USMA Class of 1830), Major Peter Valentine Hagner (USMA Class of 1836) Inspecting Officer of Contract Arms, and Captain George Thatcher Balch (USMA Class of 1853) who replaced Hagner as inspector at Colt, were all artillery officers just as those officers noted above. So, perhaps those noted above could be the very individuals who inspected this particular musket?
    SCV member Francis S. Bartow Camp #93
    SRTX member James George Chapter #59
    Former Heavy Weapons Leader, B-3-11 SFG(A)

  3. Re: Converted US Musket with unknown marks

    To Help, we need more pictures and detailed measurements.

    The 2 pictures provided do not even show the whole musket. From what I can see, something is not right about the lock. It does not resemble any other 1816 "Belgian Conversion" plates in that the fill of brass is substantially less than every other one I have ever seen. Either the lock was ground down to fit the stock or it is not an 1816 lock. My guess is that it is an 1817 Artillery Musket lock but it is just that, a guess.

    I suspect what you have is a very old composite gun, parts from different guns put together as one, not an original flintlock conversion to percussion of one gun. This would also explain the marks that don't match up with known inspector marks for 1816 muskets.

    Unless we have more pictures and measurements, what we can help you would be no more than a WAG.
    Edwin Flint
    14th Mississippi Infantry, N-SSA
    Deputy Commander, DS Region

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Fredericksburg, VA
    Western - Illinois and Wisconsin

    Re: Converted US Musket with unknown marks

    I am new to this forum so it may take me a while to figure out how to post an image. As to the gun, it is not a composit gun. The lockplate is original to the gun. I will post an overall image of the gun asap. The measurements are:
    Overall length: 57 1/2", barrel length 42",
    sights: rear: none, front; brass blade mounted on rear strap of upper barrel band.
    Mountings: iron,
    stock; walnut.
    Markings: lockplate; Eagle over US forward of hammer, SPRING / FIELD / 1817 vertically behind hammer, workman's marks on lock parts; tumbler, bridle, sear, sear screw mainspring screw, sear spring screw (a comma , ), bridle screws ( two commas ,, ), lockplate; AK , lockplate screws \/ | , side plate D ,
    barrel: top near breech; P (Eagle Head) V, G over 43, forward of nipple; Spread Eagle ELDT , left side near breech; 7 L , bottom near breech; B / B / \/ | , Tang: top 1817 , bottom; \/ | , rear I S / CH , tang screw; \/ | , upper barrel band: outside; D , inside; E , middle barrel band; D , lower barrel band: outside; D , inside; HR, trigger guard; D , trigger plate; B, butt plate; US,
    Stock; GN Eagle DT .

    The annual report for 1817 shows that 13,015 muskets were received into store, and it is believed that about 6,000 were of the Standard Musket of 1815 Type IV Pattern. According to Schmidt, this musket should be referred to as a Standard Musket of 1815, Type IV. This would explain the variation in the lockplate from a later standard M1816

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