This is an early Winchester 1894 made in 1895 with serial number in the 30,000 range. Its chambered in black powder caliber 32-40...which in its day was considered one of the most accurate target calibers. Standard 26" octagon barrel, full magazine, and crescent rifle buttplate. Standards sights include semi-buckhorn rear and standard front w/German silver blade. I was recently reading through a recent Shooting Times magazine that gave a tribute to the now-discontinued Winchester Models 94 and 70....basically a collection of articles done on these articles over the years. In one reprinted article from 2000, it states that of the five original calibers for the 1894, 25-35, 30-30, 32 WS, 32-40, and 38-55, the 32-40 was the most accurate at 100 yards. However, old-school target shooters will tell you that 32-40 really reaches its zenith out a bit further at 200-300 yards. While this caliber is now obsolete, we were amazed to learn that it held the world's record for a 10 shot group at 200 yards for nearly a century and was only broken in recent times. Not bad for an old black powder round, huh?
Overall condition grades to NRA Antique Fine+ with 75% original blue remaining on the frame with some forging striation lines...normal on early 1894's. One little spot, about the size of a pencil eraser around the weep hole that's a little dinged up. Loading port has 30% bright fire blue around the edges. The barrel and magazine tube show around 25% original blue in more protected areas with the balance of the metal a soft gray patina that is beginning to tone brown. Hammer shows 40% dull case colors while the lever colors have washed out to a nickel-silver appearance. Very good screws overall. Nice markings including the 2 line Winchester barrel address on the top flat of the octagon. Caliber is marked "32-40" behind the rear sight on the top. There are no Winchester proof marks on the barrel or frame...which is correct for an 1890's vintage Winchester...so yes, this is the ORIGINAL barrel. Over the past year of two, we've purchased a few Winchesters via the internet with these important details conveniently left out of descriptions and photos...only to see in person they had proof marks indicating they had been shipped back to the factory for new barrels. This one is a good straight example. No extra holes either in both the metal or the wood! That's another area we keep running into trouble with online. Upper tang is marked with its correct 3 line Maker, Model, and original Browning August 21, 1894 US Patent Date. The wood is in VG+ to Fine condition overall with chips, cracks, or repairs. Very nice wood to metal fit. Wood shows wear with only traces of original varnish remaining but well take care of as there are relatively few handling marks and no signs of abuse. Good action. Bore is Very Good overall with nice rifling. No rings, bulges, or pitted out areas. A nice example of a hard-to-find early Model 1894 with antique serial number.