View Full Version : Marlin .45/70

October 8, 2006, 04:22 PM
I would like some idea as to the value of my lever action rifle. It was built for black powder (according to my dad) and the only number I can find on it is on the bottom of the receiver. It displays no model number and the only other thing I can find on it are the makers name and patent numbers and the stamp, "45 GOVT" on top of the octagon barrel.

The number is; 1287
The name on top of the barrel is; "J.M. Marlin New Haven, Conn. USA"
There is a row of patent dates under the name. All of the years are two digit and my eyes are too weak to read all of them.

I am not a collector, this rifle and another are keep sakes from my dad. I have no intention to sell either rifle but am wondering if they are valuable enough that I should store them in a vault somewhere.

October 8, 2006, 06:16 PM
Can't help you with value.

You most likely have a Model 1881. In that year the JM Marlin Company changed it's name to the Marlin Firearms Company. A few lever actions were still produced under the JM Marlin name in 1881 and 1882 however. The oldest serial numbers for this rifle that I could find started in 1883 with the number of 4096 (http://homepage.hispeed.ch/american-arms/american-firearms/z-html/company-M/Marlin%20Firearms%20Co/Marlin%20Firearms%20Co.html), so numbers lower than that would be in the first two years. They produced just over 2,200 in '83 so your rifle would most likely be made in the first year.

I suggest you head over to the Marlin Collectors Association (http://www.marlin-collectors.com/forum/index.php) for more info.

October 8, 2006, 07:11 PM
Thank you for your reply. I suspected the shooter was old but this is a bit of a surprise to me.