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 California gunsmith Charles Slotterbek patented his telescope mount on October 8, 1878 (patent no. 208,765). According to Gerald Kelver in "100 Years of Shooters and Gunmakers of Single
Shot Rifles," Slotterbek purchased more than 150 Malcolm Telescopes from William Malcolm, circa 1885-1895 (page 153). The Malcolm telescope and
Slotterbek mount made for the
perfect combination of late 19th century firearms tech that was taken advantage of by California target shooters and hunters as
demonstrated on this rifle. The action is fitted with Marlin double set triggers. The checkered forearm and pistol grip stock are select walnut. The buttstock is fitted with a crescent buttplate. The accompanying factory letter confirms the 28 inch barrel in .40- 60 caliber and set trigger as well as it being shipped on February 11, 1884. Although the high end finishes are not confirmed by
the factory letter, the engraving, inscription, and deluxe checkered pistol grip stock are definitely factory. As noted Marlin expert William Brophy explained, "Unfortunately, the few remaining factory records do not, with any regularity, indicate if the gun was factory engraved or not." CONDITION: Fine. The barrel and magazine tube retain
50% original blue finish with smooth brown patina on
the balance. The receiver retains 50% original case colors
with crisp engraving and inscription. The hammer and
lever retains faded patterns of original case colors, and the buttplate has a smooth gray patina. The wood is also fine with minor dings and scratches and overall crisp checkering. The scope retains 40% of original blue finish and has hazy optics. Mechanically excellent. This factory engraved deluxe Model 1881 rifle with a Malcolm telescope on a Slotterbek mount is a standout piece of Marlin artistry made even
more special as being inscribed to a prominent Sacramento resident. This rifle is certainly a testament to the western spirit well-deserving of the finest collection.
Provenance: The Tom Selleck Collection.
Estimate: 50,000 - 70,000

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