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  LOT 265
Scarce Early Merrill Breech Loading Percussion Carbine with “Staple” Front Sight, Serial Number 125 - Serial no. 125, 54 percussion cal., 22 1/8 inch round bbl., bright finish, walnut stock. Total production of type I and II Merrill carbines by James H. Merrill of Baltimore, Maryland, was just under 14,500, and nearly all were issued
to Union cavalry units including several from New York and Pennsylvania. Merrill was in Washington, D.C. in 1816 and initially worked with his brother William as a gunsmith in Baltimore in the 1840s. His first breech loading design was patented in 1856. This example is a very early type I carbine and has the rarely seen “staple” blade front sight, flush fitting flat lock plate, and lacks government inspection markings. It also features a notch rear sight with two folding leaves marked for 300 and 500 yards, brass patch box and furniture, the early style knurled latch, a sling bar and ring attached to the brass side plate on the left stock flat, matching serial numbers on the tail of the lock and lever, the early style two line marking “J.H. MERRILL BALTO./PAT.JULY, 1858.” on the lock below the bolster, and “J.H. MERRILL BALTO./PAT.JULY 1858.” on the top of the breech lever. CONDITION: Fair as heavily cleaned. The iron surfaces are mostly bright gray and have mild pitting throughout. The brass has an aged patina. The stock is very good and has some small dents and a dark oil finish. The markings are mostly crisp, and the action functions fine. These early Merrill carbines are very rarely seen and few likely survived years of hard use during the Civil War. Remaining examples are extremely hard to come by and are missing from most compressive Civil war collections. Estimate: 6,000 - 8,000
 According to author George D. Moller, approximately 300 Jenks Carbines were altered by James H. Merrill with the Merrill system for the U.S. Navy.
LOT 266 Very Scarce, One of Only 300, U.S. Navy Jenks-Merrill Breech Loading Percussion Carbine - NSN, 54 cal., 24 1/4 inch round bbl., brown/casehardened finish, walnut stock. Only an estimated 300 Jenks carbines were altered by James H. Merrill to the Merrill system for the U.S. Navy in the late 1850s to 1860 in order to test the practicality of the Merrill combustible paper cartridge as opposed to William Jenks’ system, which required loading with loose powder and ball. It has a blade front sight on the upper barrel band, and combination folding leaf rear sight graduated up to 500 yards with its base acting as a catch for the front of the breech lever. The breech lever has the two-line marking “JAS.H.MERRILL/BALTO.PATENTED/JULY, 1858.” (double stamped), and the top of the barrel at the breech is marked “Wm JENKS” parallel to the bore ahead of “USN/RC/P/1845”. Two inspection cartouches stamped on the left of the stock opposite the lock (one obstructed). CONDITION: Fine, retaining 60% period refinished brown finish on the barrel with some areas of light fading. Case colored lock and breech lever turned to a smooth gray patina. The refinished hammer has a reattached replacement top section. The brass fittings exhibit a mix of golden bright and golden aged patinas. The stock is also fine as re-oiled, with numerous scattered mild dents and scratches, one obstructed cartouche and the other cartouche defined. Mechanically fine. Estimate: 4,500 - 7,000
   LOT 267
Scarce Unaltered U.S. Navy N.P. Ames-Wm. Jenks “Mule Ear” Breech Loading Percussion Carbine -
Serial no. 1714, 54 cal., 24 1/4 inch round bbl., brown/casehardened finish, walnut stock. Ames manufactured 4,250 of these distinctive “mule ear” breech loading carbines between 1843-1846. The Jenks carbines were originally smoothbores with a round loading aperture. Around 1861, most Jenks carbines were rifled and had the loading aperture enlarged to an oval shape to accept a paper cartridge rather than loose balls and powder; with this scarce example escaping said alteration and still retaining its original round loading aperture and smoothbore. “Wm JENKS” and “USN/RP/P/1845” marked on the top of the barrel at the breech ahead of the round loading aperture. Single letter inspection initials marked on several components. The lock plate has the Ames three-line marking in the center and “Wm JENKS” towards the rear. This example does not have a fixture for a sling ring as usually seen on the lower tang. Boxed script “RP” (Richard Paine) and “JL” (Joseph Lanman) inspection cartouches stamped on the left of the stock. CONDITION: Good, exhibiting a mix of original brown finish and scattered brown patina, with traces of case colors strongest in protected areas, some scattered mild flash pitting around the breech area, and defined markings in the metal. The re-oiled stock is very good, with numerous scattered light scratches and dents, a repaired split in the wrist, a few small chips at the edges, and defined cartouches. Mechanically fine. Estimate: 3,000 - 4,500

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