Susat Civil War Antiques

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    Sharps received his first patent in 1848 and produced limited numbers of firearms and submitted them for testing with the US government.  They did well.  In 1852 he received a patent for the pellet primer.  The model 1852 was the first Sharps with the pellet primer and the side mounted hammer lock that is so familiar now.  The 1852 started production in 1853 with a total production of around 5000.  The model 1853 carbine followed this model and is very similar.  The main difference is that the 1852 has the lever pin retained by a spring in the forestock.  With the 1853 a spring loaded pin in the frame retained the level pin.

    The army ordered 200 of carbines in 1852 for field testing. The first order was filled with 150 - model 1851 carbines (these had a Maynard tape primer) and 50 of the model 1852 carbines (with the Sharps Pellet Primer)  In 1854 the Army ordered another 200 carbines and requested that 25 be the 1851 with the Maynard Tape Primer.  The balance of the order - 175- were the model 1852 carbine.  Many of these were sent to St. Louis and from there many were issued to the 2nd Dragoons.  The 2nd dragoons fought a battle with a band Sioux in 1855 providing the first test of the Sharps in battle.  Several of the carbines long swivel ring bar broke - resulting in the loss of the carbine in the high prairie grasses.  The Army requested shortening the swivel ring bar on future orders.  Future orders were filled with the 1855 and 1853 carbines. 

    This particular example has inspectors initials on the stock showing purchase by the government. 

    Also this particular example - serial number 6282 - shows up as being used by Troop K 12th Ohio Cavalry in 1864.  I spoke with Spring Field Research Service and they felt there was a good chance to identify the trooper that carried this carbine.  

    As to condition, there is no finish remaining on the metal.  The carbine is complete and does not show repairs or replaced parts. Everything function and nothing is missing.  It is marked Sharps Patent 1852 on the lock and the serial number is stamped on the breech tang.  I see some  traces of Sharps marks on the barrel in front of the rear sight.  The metal is smooth with some light pitting.    The stock is nice and has few dings.  The bore has strong rifling though there is pitting.  

    This is quite a historic piece with US purchase and probable frontier use in the 1850s and then being identified to a specific Cavalry unit in the Civil War.  The 12th Ohio was active in Tennessee with service against Forest.