WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO.
A RARE .22 (SHORT) 'MODEL 1873' LEVER-ACTION REPEATING SPORTING RIFLE, serial no. 201508B,
for 1886, with round 24 1/2in. barrel signed 'WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS NEW HAVEN CT.' and with 1866 and 1860 patent dates, dove-tailed fore-sight with blade extended in antiquity, standing notch rear-sight with additional folding leaf mounted on an applied block, stepped receiver bridge, slab-sided receiver without loading gate aperture, brass lifter and sliding dust-cover, exposed hammer, the top-tang marked 'MODEL 1873', walnut butt-stock of shotgun form with iron heel-plate, finger-lever forming the triggerguard with swivel-lock to lower tang, plain walnut fore-end with iron nose-cap (nose-cap screws replaced) and full-length under-barrel magazine with detachable inner loading tube, finish with shallow frosting throughout
Provenance: Winchester Model 1873's in .22 rimfire, especially short, are extremely difficult to find. According to Madis, when the comparative rarity count was conducted by the Winchester factory in 1933, only one in every 350 Model 1873 rifles produced was a .22 rimfire, giving a total production of around 2000 pieces across all types (Rifles, Carbines and Muskets, Long and Short calibres). Interestingly, the detachable magazine loading tube, a feature found on many .22 rifles of later manufacture and by other makers, was the only gun related patent ever filed by Oliver Winchester himself; all other Winchester patents were designs by others
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S1 - Sold as a Section 1 Firearm under the 1968 Firearms Act