View Full Version : Help Identify My Shotgun

January 6, 2009, 10:45 AM
I am 41 yrs old. I have been hunting my entire life, starting with my Pappa when I was old enough to walk. From my earliest memories we always took "the shotgun" hunting with us. It didn't matter what we were hunting, that was the gun of choice.
Pappa died about 15 years ago and my son and I now hunt with "Double Trouble". We also take it to X card and Turkey shoots and win with it on a regular basis. My son is 15 years old and I stand back and watch him shoot it and it floods me with memories of hunting when I was his age.
Anyway......the gun. I don't know what it is. It is a 12 gauge, double barrel shotgun, hammerless, dual triggers, with really no distinguishing features of any kind. The only markings on the whole gun is the word "SMITHSONIAN" on the left side of the action and there is a number on the underside of the handgrip and under the handgrip on the action. I don't have the gun with me right now and I don't remember the number, but I can get it if you need it. I'm pretty sure, going on memory, that it is a five digit number. It has a regular wood stock. The left barrel is full choke and the right barrel is a modified choke I think. I think that is pretty standard anyway. Hundreds of people have looked at it over the years and no one has ever been able to identify it. I could have come here and asked a long time ago, but you know how life goes......."I meant to do that...I really did!"
So if you can tell me anything about Pappa's shotgun, I would appreciate it. It will never be sold and I'm not looking for a buyer. I seek only a little history to pass on to my son.
Thanks and please email me if you have any questions or answers!

January 6, 2009, 12:38 PM
i found this link
hope that it help you some

J F Cooper
January 8, 2009, 07:27 AM
The Smithsonian was a trade name usd by a maker, the last one I saw appeard to be an N R Davis.. Probably made in the 1900 to 1925 time frame..JFC

January 8, 2009, 10:04 AM
Thanks for the replies. I didn't think my gun was that old actually. It has blued steel barrels, not Damascus barrels.

January 10, 2009, 12:17 PM
Damascus isn't always apparent, specially with good bluing. I doubt yours would be damascus with that time frame tho. One thing you do need to be aware of with older shotguns is the chamber length is shorter and the forcing cones are cut different. You may have a chamber that measures anywhere from 2 1/2" up to 2 3/4". Shotgun shells are measured after firing so a 2 3/4" shell will fit fine but when it's fired the star crimp on modern shells opens up over the forcing cone and really jacks chamber pressure up. Now I grew up shooting 2 3/4 shells out of short chambers with no ill effects but I don't recommend it.

January 12, 2009, 02:24 PM
This is an interesting link that could give you an insight to Pappa's old SXS.

Also what Hawg posted about chamber length. I also shot an old sxs that was chambered for shells shorter than what was readily available. I can remember being able to easily ID these empty's from others as they were deformed upon firing.
If you are questioning your shotgun, and by that I mean, if this shotgun doesn't state 2 3/4 in on it it is very likely not chambered for them.
Could you post a picture of a fired hull from this gun? I would be curious to see if the same deformity exists.
Or, it may be that this shotgun was re chambered years ago.