SPECIAL MODEL 1861 AMOSKEAG CONTRACT RIFLE MUSKET
.58-caliber, 40-inch barrel, contract Special Model 1861, single-shot muzzleloader
Dated 1863 (produced by Amoskeag 1862-1864)
This is fine example of a Civil War 3-band 1861 Special Model Rifled Musket manufactured by Amoskeag. The Springfield Armory supervised the manufacturing and distribution of the Model 1861 muskets. To fulfill shortages, production was sub-contracted to several private manufacturers; Colt, LG&Y, E.G Lamson, and Amoskeag all produced these Special Contract muskets through the entire war 1861-65. The "Special" Model 1861 contract represented a transition from the Model 1861 design and incorporated many of the features eventually adopted in the Model 1863 regulation, namely the contoured hammer, flat bolster and removal of band springs.
Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, Manchester New Hampshire produced approximately 27,000 muskets under this contract. This musket was designed as a single shot .58 cal. rifled muzzleloader, iron buttplate, contoured hammer, bolster is milled flat eliminating the clean out screw, two leaf sight retain 98% blue, three barrel bands are rounded with tightening screws secured by internal springs, provisions for two straps, one on trigger guard, another on the second band, ramrod is tulip head with straight shank and threaded end, iron nose cap. Lock is marked "1863" behind the hammer, with "U (eagle) S", / AMOSKEAG Mfg Co, eagle on bolster. Barrel is marked "VP" over eagle head, and "1863"; also “A” on barrel flat just ahead of breech. Buttplate is marked "US". Three bands each marked "U". Cartouche in wood on the left side indicating government inspection. All metal parts are bright and clean, some extremely scattered light peppering to barrel. Stock shows a dark patina, contours are sharp; no varnish
Overall condition is excellent, action is tight and smooth.