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Confederate Tower Enfield Musket

This is a good example of a Civil War imported Enfield Musket that was run through the blockade to the South.  It has a Confederate Anchor "S" marking located on top of the stock.  Over the years we've had several examples of Anchor "S" including two examples passed down through families that were ID'd to Confederate Soldiers.  All the ones I've seen over the years are mid-late War 1863 or 1864 dated w/Tower marked Lock plates that were made in Birmingham, England. Frequently,  the stocks are stamped with cartouches from Birmingham makers.  This one is no exception, its marked Tower, dated 1863, and was made in Birmingham.  It even has the Birmingham Small Arms Trade cartouche on the right side of the stock. The Anchor S mark is not the best I've seen.. the comb of the stock took a pretty good whack that has partially obscured the mark...still there is enough there to recognize it and its just as "Johnny Reb" as any Confederate marked or ID'd Enfield.  For comparison, we photographed the Anchor S marking on this rifle (right)  alongside another 1863 dated Enfield (left) with the same marking that's more clear. Incidentally, the comparison rifle is also BSAT cartouched and built by "T. Turner".  This particular rifle was built by "C Turner".   As you may note, what you see on this gun most clearly is the top of the anchor ring, shaft, and cross bar...and a little bit of the "S".  The bottom of the anchor is obscured by a dent. 

Overall condition is NRA Antique Good++ condition following 9 months of careful cosmetic restoration.  When we first found this rifle at the Nashville show last December, she was living on hard times...rusty, not working, and needed help.  The moment I spotted the Anchor S symbol on the top of the stock, I had to have this one.  After working with this rifle for several months, my feeling is that this rifle may be an early post-war Battlefield pick-up.  However, it had everything you would want in a Confederate Enfield and the wood was in very nice shape with Birmingham cartouche.  The metal has been cleaned up  and is mostly silver which contrasts nicely against the reddish brown walnut stock. It displays very well, so well that from a few feet away, it appears to be in Fine to Mint condition.  Make no mistake, this one was run through the blockade in 1863 or 1864 and definitely spent some time in service.   Markings are good overall...a little worn in places but everything is there and  legible.  Lock is marked "Tower" over "1863" with a crown behind the hammer without the Queen's "VR" (Victoria Regina-British military) underneath; correct for a Civil War commercial purchase.  The side of the barrel is partially worn Birmingham proofs and the double "25"  gauge stamps.  One of the "25" is strong..the other is light but if you look carefully in the photos, you'll see its still there. Right side of the stock is marked "Birmingham Small Arms Trade" in a roundel with a crown in the middle over the letters B S A T.  The bottom of the stock is marked "C TURNER"...which can also be found on the bottom of the barrel.  Various parts on this rifle also have a roman numeral "XI" assembly number.  Complete with swivels, rear sight, and ramrod.  Ramrod and nipple are modern replacements aged to look old.  Stock is in nice shape, solid, with nice wood to metal fit.  The wood has some burnout around the bolster from spark erosion...these areas have been expertly mended bringing it back to its original contours.  The wood to metal fit is perfect.  Very Good screws throughout.  In fact, the wood screws are still in their original 12" and 6" o'clock positions.  If you're looking for a real Confederate Enfield but can't afford the ones with the expensive marks, this would make an economical alternative that will display on your wall or fireplace mantle as nicely as one in a museum.

Item# 0897




Antique Arms, Inc. | P.O. Box 2313 | Loganville, Georgia 30052-1947 | 770-466-1662 (W)