Civil War Relicman
Harry Ridgeway
Winchester, Virginia USA (changed hands 70 times in the Civil War!)
authentic Civil War relics, bought and sold.
http://relicman.com/
Sales listing updated August 11, 2015.

Weapons (pre 1898) of the Civil War
Relicman Sales catalog

All items listed are guaranteed authentic to the Civil War or as otherwise described.
Any excavated relics have been recovered from private property with owners permission.
Any artillery or ordnance relics have been disarmed and rendered safe.
All weapons are pre 1898 antique weapons, and are exempt from Federal regulation, no licenses or permits are required.

W1478...Cavalry saber, Model 1840, Ames, 1857
The model 1840 saber, called the "wrist breaker", was was a relatively heavy cavalry saber, and as it was manufactured before the Civil War, it saw extensive use by both sides during the war. Standard features include a relatively straight wooden handle without a swell, grip is covered with leather and twisted wire, brass hilt has three branches, brass pommel cap and guard are unadorned, steel blade has flat back with narrow and wide fuller stopped at the ricasso, iron scabbard with iron mountings. Manufactured by Ames Manufacturing Company, Chicopee, Massachusetts. Blade length 36in.
Ref: Thillmann Cav. & Arty. Sabers pg. 66. Saber was manufactured 1857, marks on ricasso, "AMES MFG CO / CHICOPEE / MASS" on left side, and "US / JH/ 1857" on right side. Additional inspector stampings, "RHKW" and "JH" on pommel, "JH" on drag.

The grip has leather wrap and wire intact, leather washer intact, clean blade, scabbard intact with smooth grey patina, outstanding example of the wrist breaker with desirable early date and matching inspector marks.
.....For Sale...........$1,950......
W1478. click here to view pictures and details

W1479...Cavalry saber, Model 1840, Ames, 1847
The model 1840 saber, called the "wrist breaker", was was a relatively heavy cavalry saber, and as it was manufactured before the Civil War, it saw extensive use by both sides during the war. Standard features include a relatively straight wooden handle without a swell, grip is covered with leather and twisted wire, brass hilt has three branches, brass pommel cap and guard are unadorned, steel blade has flat back with narrow and wide fuller stopped at the ricasso, iron scabbard with iron mountings. Manufactured by Ames Manufacturing Company, Cabotville, Massachusetts. Blade length 36in.
Ref: Thillmann Cav. & Arty. Sabers pg. 66. Saber was manufactured 1847, marks on ricasso, "N. P. AMES / CABOTTEVILLE/ 1847" on left side, and "US / RC" on right side. Additional inspector stampings, "RC" and "JWR" on pommel, "RC" on drag.

The grip has leather wrap intact, wire is missing, leather washer intact, clean blade, scabbard intact with smooth brown patina, nice example of the wrist breaker with desirable Mexican War date and matching inspector marks.
.....For Sale...........$1,050.
W1479. click here to view pictures and details

W1480...Cavalry saber, Model 1840, Ames, 1845
The model 1840 saber, called the "wrist breaker", was was a relatively heavy cavalry saber, and as it was manufactured before the Civil War, it saw extensive use by both sides during the war. Standard features include a relatively straight wooden handle without a swell, grip is covered with leather and twisted wire, brass hilt has three branches, brass pommel cap and guard are unadorned, steel blade has flat back with narrow and wide fuller stopped at the ricasso, iron scabbard with iron mountings. Manufactured by Ames Manufacturing Company, Cabotville, Massachusetts. Blade length 36in.
Ref: Thillmann Cav. & Arty. Sabers pg. 66. Saber was manufactured 1845, marks on ricasso, "N. P. AMES / CABOTTEVILLE / 1845" on left side, and "US / NWP" on right side. Additional inspector stampings, "WAT" and "NWP" on pommel, "D" on upper hanger ring.

The grip has leather wrap intact, wire is missing, leather washer intact, clean blade, scabbard intact with smooth brown patina, nice example of the wrist breaker with desirable Mexican war date and matching inspector marks.
.....For Sale...........$1,225.
W1480. click here to view pictures and details

W1148...Artillery saber, Model 1840, Ames, 1863, Ames Mfg Co, Chicopee, banner address, DR.
The model 1840 saber designed for the artilleryman was lighter than thecavalry version. Standard features include a relatively straight wooden handle covered with leather and a wire grip, brass hilt with a single bar, brass pommel cap is relatively low convex and unadorned, steel blade has distinct curve with a flat back with a narrowfuller not stopped and a wide fuller stopped at the ricasso, iron scabbard with iron mountings. The recess on the handle present on the earlier models was removed, leather washer employed, and there is a throat on the scabbard. These features were employed for this sword manufactured in 1863, by then this was standard for the cavalry sabers. Manufactured by Ames Manufacturing Company, Chicopee, Massachusetts. Marks on ricasso, "MADE BY / AMES MFG CO. / CHICOPEE / MASS." (banner style), and "US / DR / 1863". Additional inspector marks "DR" on handle, "JF" on scabbard drag. The grip has leather wrap and wire intact, leather washer intact, handle is tight and secure, blade is clean with grey patina minor rust spots, scabbard intact with brown patina. Blade length 32in.
Ref: Thillmann Cav. & Arty. Sabers pg. 97.
........For Sale......$950............
W1148. click here to view pictures and details

W1157...Foot officer sword, Model 1850, Ames
The model 1850 foot officer sword was intended for officers up to captain, these officers received a pay allowance but made their own purchase decision, hence there is a great deal of variation in officer swords. The model 1850 guard is adorned but does not bear US. The regulation specified a steel scabbard but most including this one are made of leather, with brass mountings, a throat, middle ring, and drag. Handle is sharkskin wrapped with wire. Blade is was never etched. Manufactured by Ames Manufacturing Company, Chicopee, Massachusetts. Marks on ricasso, "MADE BY / AMES MFG CO. / CHICOPEE / MASS." (banner style). In addition the scabbard is marked "AMES MFG CO / CHICOPEE / MASS" block lettering. Grip is sharkskin wire covered and intact, adorned handle and pommel intact, leather washer intact, leather scabbard with brass fittings intact. Blade length 30in.
Ref: Thillmann Army Swords pg. 245.
....For Sale.......$1,500.
W1157. click here to view pictures and details

W1233...Navy officer sword, Model 1852, Clauberg.
Naval officers exercised wide latitude in specifying much of the specificartistic details of the swords they purchased, this is why there seems to beendless variations of them. Common amongst most of the Model 1852Navy officer swords is an ornate brass guard and basket showing Navysymbolism, "USN" cast amongst various leaves and nuts, the pommel isadorned with leaves with a serpent head on the quillon and an eagle withwings drooped perched on the top of the pommel. The grip is woodcovered by sharkskin with brass wire. The steel blade has a rounded top,and is cut with a wide and narrow fuller stopped at the ricasso, this pattern is not etched. The scabbard is leather, with brass fittings. Marks: Ricasso is etched "W CLAUBERG / graphic of a figure". Blade length 29.75in. The grip has partial sharkskin wrap and wire (both replaced), leather washer missing, handle has a slight wiggle, blade is grey with light rust, leather scabbard is fragile but complete with brass fittings.
For sale.........$1,500.........
W1233. click here to view pictures and details

W1374...Single shot percussion carbine, Burnside Model 1864, double hinged loading lever, 1856 patent date, late production "5th model", .54 cal., (#23701).
Carbine was manufactured by Burnside Rifle Co., Providence, Rhode Island, General Ambrose Burnside, was an official in the company before the war but was not involved in wartime development of the weapon. The Burnside carbine employed an unusual cone shaped metal cartridge for use in a percussion system. Period literature refers to the Model 1863, although none are marked with this date and collectors have referred to the model generally as "5th model", however, that is not a contemporary term. Approximately 43,000 carbines of this model were produced, serial numbers were apparently reset to zero and run to around 43,000 overall. This model represented only modest improvements over the earlier models, most notably being the placement of a guide screw on the right side in the middle of the receiver, this improvement facilitated smoother operation during loading. Initial production, up to approximately 19,000, feature "Model 1864" stamped on the top of the breech, later production reverted back to use of the 1856 patent date. The barrel is stamped "Cast Steel", followed by a date, the date is weak or missing on most, this because the long and narrow stamp had to be centered on a round barrel, apparently most were not centered and the date at the end was simply lost, both the 1862 or the 1864 date seem to have been used but the date is obliterated or missing on most examples. Standard features include an iron buttplate, single iron barrel band, saddle riding bar and ring on left side, strap hook on bottom of butt, double hinged iron loading lever also serves as a trigger guard, hinged sight, chamber tapered for unique Burnside metal cartridge with a priming hole in the bottom for percussion. Marks on top of frame "BURNSIDE PATENT / MARCH 25, 1856". Barrel is marked "CAST STEEL (date obliterated) ". Lock marked, "BURNSIDE RIFLE CO. / PROVIDENCE = R. I. ". Serial number normally appears three times, on the top of the breech, top of the receiver, and inside (can be viewed by opening the breech). Cartouches in the wood on the left side indicate government inspection, additional inspector marks may be found on other parts. Barrel length 21in. Metal appearance pleasing with with rust and some pitting, metal needs cleaning, maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching, wood solid with dings and scratches from use, cartouches are present, sight intact, band intact, bar and riding ring intact, strap swivel hook intact, bore is clean, rifling definite, mechanics fully functional
Ref: Flayderman 9B-045.


....For Sale .........$1,400........
W1374. click here to view pictures and details

W1384...Artillery saber, Model 1840, Ames, 1864, Ames Mfg Co, Chicopee, block address, ADK
The model 1840 saber designed for the artilleryman was lighter than thecavalry version. Standard features include a relatively straight wooden handle covered with leather and a wire grip, brass hilt with a single bar, brass pommel cap is relatively low convex and unadorned, steel blade has distinct curve with a flat back with a narrowfuller not stopped and a wide fuller stopped at the ricasso, iron scabbard with iron mountings. The recess on the handle present on the type I saber was removed on this type II, however the scabbard has a raw top without a throat. Manufactured by Ames Manufacturing Company, Chicopee, Massachusetts. Marks: Ricasso is stamped "AMES MFG CO / CHICOPEE / MASS."(block address), and "US / ADK / 1864". Blade length 32in. Number on scabbard is likely a rack number. The grip has leather wrap, wire and leather washer intact with wear, handle is tight and secure, blade appearance is bright grey patina, maker marks are strong, scabbard intact with smooth brown patina.
Ref: Thillmann Cav. & Arty. Sabers pg. 97.
.....For Sale.....$950..........
W1384. click here to view pictures and details

W1387...Single shot percussion carbine, Burnside Model 1864, double hinged loading lever, 1856 patent date, late production "5th model", .54 cal., (#26706)
Carbine was manufactured by Burnside Rifle Co., Providence, Rhode Island, General Ambrose Burnside, was an official in the company before the war but was not involved in wartime development of the weapon. The Burnside carbine employed an unusual cone shaped metal cartridge for use in a percussion system. Period literature refers to the Model 1863, although none are marked with this date and collectors have referred to the model generally as "5th model", however, that is not a contemporary term. Approximately 43,000 carbines of this model were produced, serial numbers were apparently reset to zero and run to around 43,000 overall. This model represented only modest improvements over the earlier models, most notably being the placement of a guide screw on the right side in the middle of the receiver, this improvement facilitated smoother operation during loading. Initial production, up to approximately 19,000, feature "Model 1864" stamped on the top of the breech, later production reverted back to use of the 1856 patent date. The barrel is stamped "Cast Steel", followed by a date, the date is weak or missing on most, this because the long and narrow stamp had to be centered on a round barrel, apparently most were not centered and the date at the end was simply lost, both the 1862 or the 1864 date seem to have been used but the date is obliterated or missing on most examples. Standard features include an iron buttplate, single iron barrel band, saddle riding bar and ring on left side, strap hook on bottom of butt, double hinged iron loading lever also serves as a trigger guard, hinged sight, chamber tapered for unique Burnside metal cartridge with a priming hole in the bottom for percussion. Marks on top of frame "BURNSIDE PATENT / MARCH 25, 1856". Barrel is marked "CAST STEEL (date obliterated) ". Lock marked, "BURNSIDE RIFLE CO. / PROVIDENCE = R. I. ". Serial number normally appears three times, on the top of the breech, top of the receiver, and inside (can be viewed by opening the breech). Cartouches in the wood on the left side indicate government inspection, additional inspector marks may be found on other parts. Barrel length 21in. Metal appearance pleasing with smooth brown patina, maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching, wood solid with dings and scratches from use, sight intact, band intact, bar and riding ring intact, strap swivel hook is missing, bore is clean, rifling definite, mechanics fully functional.
Ref: Flayderman 9B-045.
.....For Sale ........$1,400..........
W1387. click here to view pictures and details

W1388...Single shot percussion carbine, Burnside Model 1864, double hinged loading lever, 1856 patent date, late production "5th model", .54 cal., (#27997)
Carbine was manufactured by Burnside Rifle Co., Providence, Rhode Island, General Ambrose Burnside, was an official in the company before the war but was not involved in wartime development of the weapon. The Burnside carbine employed an unusual cone shaped metal cartridge for use in a percussion system. Period literature refers to the Model 1863, although none are marked with this date and collectors have referred to the model generally as "5th model", however, that is not a contemporary term. Approximately 43,000 carbines of this model were produced, serial numbers were apparently reset to zero and run to around 43,000 overall. This model represented only modest improvements over the earlier models, most notably being the placement of a guide screw on the right side in the middle of the receiver, this improvement facilitated smoother operation during loading. Initial production, up to approximately 19,000, feature "Model 1864" stamped on the top of the breech, later production reverted back to use of the 1856 patent date. The barrel is stamped "Cast Steel", followed by a date, the date is weak or missing on most, this because the long and narrow stamp had to be centered on a round barrel, apparently most were not centered and the date at the end was simply lost, both the 1862 or the 1864 date seem to have been used but the date is obliterated or missing on most examples. Standard features include an iron buttplate, single iron barrel band, saddle riding bar and ring on left side, strap hook on bottom of butt, double hinged iron loading lever also serves as a trigger guard, hinged sight, chamber tapered for unique Burnside metal cartridge with a priming hole in the bottom for percussion. Marks on top of frame "BURNSIDE PATENT / MARCH 25, 1856". Barrel is marked "CAST STEEL (date obliterated) ". Lock marked, "BURNSIDE RIFLE CO. / PROVIDENCE = R. I. ". Serial number normally appears three times, on the top of the breech, top of the receiver, and inside (can be viewed by opening the breech). Cartouches in the wood on the left side indicate government inspection, additional inspector marks may be found on other parts. Barrel length 21in. Metal appearance pleasing with brown patina, maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching, wood solid with dings and scratches from use, cartouches are visiblesight intact, band intact, bar and riding ring intact, strap swivel hook intact, bore is clean, rifling definite, mechanics fully functional.
Ref: Flayderman 9B-045.
....For Sale $1,500...........
W1388. click here to view pictures and details

W1390...Single shot percussion carbine, Burnside Model 1864, double hinged loading lever, 1864 model date, aka "5th model", .54 cal., (#3547)
Carbine was manufactured by Burnside Rifle Co., Providence, Rhode Island, General Ambrose Burnside, was an official in the company before the war but was not involved in wartime development of the weapon. The Burnside carbine employed an unusual cone shaped metal cartridge for use in a percussion system. Period literature refers to the Model 1863, although none are marked with this date and collectors have referred to the model generally as "5th model", however, that is not a contemporary term. Approximately 43,000 carbines of this model were produced, serial numbers were apparently reset to zero and run to around 43,000 overall. This model represented only modest improvements over the earlier models, most notably being the placement of a guide screw on the right side in the middle of the receiver, this improvement facilitated smoother operation during loading. Initial production, up to approximately 19,000, feature "Model 1864" stamped on the top of the breech, later production reverted back to use of the 1856 patent date. The barrel is stamped "Cast Steel", followed by a date, the date is weak or missing on most, this because the long and narrow stamp had to be centered on a round barrel, apparently most were not centered and the date at the end was simply lost, both the 1862 or the 1864 date seem to have been used but the date is obliterated or missing on most examples. Standard features include an iron buttplate, single iron barrel band, saddle riding bar and ring on left side, strap hook on bottom of butt, double hinged iron loading lever also serves as a trigger guard, hinged sight, chamber tapered for unique Burnside metal cartridge with a priming hole in the bottom for percussion. Marks on top of frame "BURNSIDE PATENT / MODEL OF 1864". Barrel is marked "CAST STEEL 1864". Lock marked "BURNSIDE RIFLE CO. / PROVIDENCE = R. I. ". Serial number normally appears three times, on the top of the breech, top of the receiver, and inside (can be viewed by opening the breech). Cartouches in the wood on the left side indicate government inspection, additional inspector marks on various parts. Barrel length 21in. Metal appearance pleasing with brown patina, maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching, wood solid with dings and scratches from use, cartouches are visible, sight intact, band intact, bar and riding ring intact, strap swivel hook is missing, bore is clean, rifling definite, mechanics fully functional.
Ref: Flayderman 9B-046.
.......For Sale .........$1,400............
W1390. click here to view pictures and details


W1393...Six shot percussion revolver, Colt Model 1860 Army, round cylinder, 3 screws, abbreviated number on cylinder, manufacture 1863, .44 cal., (#108426)
Revolver was manufactured by Colt Firearms, Hartford Connecticut, the Model 1860 Army revolver was a percussion fired six shooter, .44 caliber. Standard design employed round barrel, creeping style loading lever, barrel and cylinder held in place and easily removed for loading by releasing removable wedge, four screws, rounded cylinder with notches, brass trigger guard, iron back strap with notch for engaging shoulder stock, walnut grips. Top of barrel is marked " - ADDRESS COL. SAML COLT NEW - YORK U. S. AMERICA -". Left frame is marked "COLTS / PATENT". Cylinder is marked "COLTS PATENT No. (last four digits of serial number) / PAT. SEPT 10TH 1850", and a scene (which is usually very weak). Additional Inspector marks, on the trigger guard, and on the barrel. Matching serial number, appears seven times, underneath on both sections of frame, trigger guard, backstrap, cylinder, wedge, and inside on cylinder pin, production estimated 1863. Round barrel length 8in. Metal appearance pleasing maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching, number on cylinder appears to be the right number but is pitted, wedge is a Colt wedge but is not marked, wood grips solid with usual dings and scratches from use, cartouches are visible, mechanics fully functional,
Ref: Flayderman 5B-092.
.....For Sale $1,800..................
W1393. click here to view pictures and details

W1394...Single shot percussion carbine, Merrill "First Type", breech lever secured with rounded latch, .54 cal., (#6231)
The Merrill carbine bears a unique breech system with a long lever released by a spring latch, and is percussion primed using a paper cartridge. Manufactured by H. Merrill, Baltimore Maryland. Standard features include brass buttplate, brass patch box, brass trigger guard, single brass band, saddle riding ring and bar on the left side, two leaf hinged sight, rifled with three grooves. On early production, the breech latch is rounded. Marks on lock forward of the hammer, "J. H. MERRILL BALTO. / PAT. JULY, 1858 / APL. 9. MAY 21 - 28 - 61", serial number rear of the hammer, number also appears on the breach tang. Breech lever is marked "J. H. MERRILL BALTO. / PAT. JULY, 1858". Additional inspector marks inside the loading lever. Barrel length 22.125in. Metal appearance pleasing with smooth brown patina, maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching, wood solid with dings and scratches from use, sight intact, band intact, bar and riding ring intact, bore is clean, rifling definite, mechanics fully functional.
Ref: Flayderman 9B-075.
......For Sale......$2,000.............
W1394. click here to view pictures and details

W1406...Six shot percussion revolver, Colt Model 1851 Navy, Hartford address, manufacture 1860, .36 cal., (#96326)
Revolver was manufactured by Colt Firearms, Hartford Connecticut, the Model 1851 revolver, a percussion fired six shooter, .36 caliber, was originally designed for the Navy but widely utilized by others. Standard design employed an octagon barrel, creeping style loading lever, barrel and cylinder held in place and easily removed for loading by releasing removable wedge, three screws, rounded cylinder with notches, rounded brass trigger guard, brass back strap, walnut grips. Top of barrel is marked " - ADDRESS COL. SAML COLT HARTFORD CT -". Left frame is marked "COLTS / PATENT". Cylinder is marked "COLTS PATENT No. (serial number) ", and a scene (which is usually very weak). Matching serial number, appears seven times, underneath on both sections of frame, trigger guard, backstrap, cylinder, wedge, and inside on cylinder pin, production estimated 1860, 93,000 to 98,000, approximately. Additional inspector mark, on trigger guard and backstrap. Octagon barrel length 7.5 in. Metal appearance pleasing, maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching including the wedge, wood grips solid with usual dings and scratches from use, mechanics fully functional.
Ref: Flayderman 5B-053.
.........For sale........$2,600.
W1406. click here to view pictures and details

W1414...Six shot percussion revolver, Colt Model 1860 Army, round cylinder, 3 screws, abbreviated number on cylinder, manufacture 1863, .44 cal., (#90314)
Revolver was manufactured by Colt Firearms, Hartford Connecticut, the Model 1860 Army revolver was a percussion fired six shooter, .44 caliber. Standard design employed round barrel, creeping style loading lever, barrel and cylinder held in place and easily removed for loading by releasing removable wedge, four screws, rounded cylinder with notches, brass trigger guard, iron back strap with notch for engaging shoulder stock, walnut grips. Top of barrel is marked " - ADDRESS COL. SAML COLT NEW - YORK U. S. AMERICA -". Left frame is marked "COLTS / PATENT". Cylinder is marked "COLTS PATENT No. (last four digits of serial number) / PAT. SEPT 10TH 1850", and a scene (which is usually very weak). Additional Inspector marks, on the trigger guard, and on the barrel. Matching serial number, appears seven times, underneath on both sections of frame, trigger guard, backstrap, cylinder, wedge, and inside on cylinder pin, production estimated 1863. Round barrel length 8in. Metal appearance pleasing , maker marks are strong, serial numbers are matching including wedge, wood grips solid with usual dings and scratches from use, cartouches are visible, mechanics fully functional.
Ref: Flayderman 5B-092
.....For sale......$1,800.......
W1414. click here to view pictures and details

W1416...Rifle percussion musket, Model 1855 Springfield, 1858, .58 cal.
The model 1855 was the first long arm made for the new. 58 caliber minie and it employed the new Maynard paper priming system. The musket also employed a conventional percussion nipple and the paper system was typically abandoned as impractical, it was eliminated entirely in the later models. Musket is single shot .58 cal. rifled muzzleloader, iron buttplate, "C" shaped hammer, bolster with clean out screw, later versions employed the three leaf site, iron trigger guard, three barrel bands are flat and held in place with springs, two strap hooks, nose cap is brass, ramrod is tulip head with bulge, end is threaded. Lock is marked "1858" behind the hammer, with eagle on the Maynard flap and "US / SPRINGFIELD" in front, manufactured by Springfield Armory, Springfield, Massachusetts. Barrel is marked "VP" over eagle head, and "1858". Buttplate is marked "US". Three bands each marked "U", strap hook on middle band and trigger guard. Barrel length 40in. Metal appearance pleasing with clean grey patina, maker marks are strong, barrel date is strong "1858", wood solid with dings and scratches from use, cartouches are visible, sight intact, tulip head ramrod intact with threads, 3 bands intact, both strap hooks intact, bore is clean, rifling strong, mechanics fully functional, original wood tompion included, outstanding example.
Ref: Flayderman 9A-307
......For sale......$4,500........
W1416. click here to view pictures and details

W1424...Cavalry saber, Model 1860, Providence Tool, 1862
The model 1860 saber was made slightly lighter than the model 1840 and was the primary saber of the Federal cavalry by the end of the war. Standard features include wooden handle with a swell covered with leather and a wire grip, brass hilt has three branches, brass pommel cap and guard are unadorned, steel blade has flat back with narrow and wide fuller stopped at the ricasso, iron scabbard with iron mountings. Manufactured by Providence Tool Company, Providence, Rhode Island. Marks on ricasso, "PROV TOOL CO", and "US / 1862". Blade length 35 inches. The grip has leather wrap and wire replaced, leather washer is missing, blade dark with rust and some pitting,scabbard intact dark with rust and some pitting, inexpensive example. Leather strap included has J Mann brass attachment, sword came out of a barn with this strap.
Ref: Thillmann Cav. & Arty. Sabers pg. 293.
.....For sale......$500.
W1424. click here to view pictures and details


End of sales listings, check back soon, more to come.

Ridgeway Reference Library, Civil War, weapons.
Pre 1898 Civil War weapons, click here.


All weapons I sell are "pre 1898 weapons". This exempts antique firearms from regulation, which means that they can be owned, or shipped through the mail, no permitting or licensing is required. The complete text of the law can be found in the Cornell online law library:
http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode18/usc_sec_18_00000921----000-.html The following relevant excerpt is taken from the law:
(3) The term (firearm) means
(A) any weapon (including a starter gun) which will or is designed to or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive;
(B) the frame or receiver of any such weapon;
(C) any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; or
(D) any destructive device. Such term does not include an antique firearm. (16) The term (antique firearm) means:
(A) any firearm (including any firearm with a matchlock, flintlock, percussion cap, or similar type of ignition system) manufactured in or before 1898; or..... This means that pre 1898 weapons are excluded from the law by definition, therefore none of the rest of the law applies to antique weapons made before 1898. One caution though, the weapons can be dangerous if not properly handled or used maliciously, so please be careful with them. A note about safety of antique weapons: Pre 1898 weapons are not regulated because the law exempts them as weapons. They are old, they are antique, and some are compromised and altered well beyond their original design. Any of them can be fired, but safety is always a concern with antique weapons. Safety is also a concern if you drive an antique car on the road. With any antique, special care needs to be exercised, you do not want to simply take the thing off the shelf and shoot it. It should be carefully inspected, cleaned, serviced, and tested before firing. Most of these weapons have not been fired in at least 100 years, and the better ones have probably not been fired since the Civil War itself. There is risk of blockage, stressed metal, improper loading, and other problems that might not be imagined. In addition many collectors would consider any cleaning or use of a historic piece to be a compromise. A premium is paid for originality and condition of a historic piece, sometimes this premium is very significant for an unfired piece, a weapon never gets in better condition as it gets handled. However if you choose to fire an antique weapon versus displaying it, you will want to take it apart, thoroughly clean and inspect it before you fire it, or at least you ought to do that. These antique weapons require an entirely different approach versus the licensed modern weapons that are readily available and more easily and safely used for sport firing and hunting. As a dealer selling strictly antique weapons, I do not warrant any use.
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