Here we have a very rare and ornate example of a Kentucky Long Rifle made by the Gunsmith W.H. Benson of Preston County West Virginia with a lock plate from Bown and Tetley, Pittsburgh.
W.H. Benson was a prolific rifle maker, first putting Gunsmith as his profession on the census in 1860.
His rifles are rarely seen now but were known for being very ornate.
This rifle is made from a very ornate and well finished hardwood, brass and silver fittings, steel lock and octagonal barrel.
The rifle has a very basic two trigger safety and as was common in America at the time, to save on lead the rifle is only a .5 bore, from this we can tell that the rifle wasn’t used excessively as many Long Rifles were re bored in a larger calibre when the friction and fouling had worn the inside of the barrel.
The butt has a brass box for patches and caps. This rifle came from the F. Henderson collection in New York.
~ Dimensions ~
The rifle weighs 6.35 Kg.
The barrel is 42 inches (107 cm) long
The Rifle is 58 inches (147 cm) from muzzle to stock.
The rifle is 5 inches (13 cm) from trigger guard to lock.
The rifle is 2 inches (5 cm) wide at the lock.
~ Condition ~
The rifle is in good condition with some ageing and signs of use.
The lock plate is slightly loose. The lock is works fine with its safety trigger but the spring is a little on the weak side.