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Old July 12, 2005, 09:22 AM   #1
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I just inherited a Trapdoor Springfield Rifle. I think it's an original but I'm not sure. The Serial #553387, is stamped on the reciver just aft of the breech. #757 is stamped on the wrist of the stock. U.S. Springfield is stamped on the side lock. V P and then some sort of eagles head design is on the left side if the barrel where it joins the reciever. It appears to be in very good condition for a weapon thats 100+ years old, which makes me suspicious.
How do I tell if it's real? If it is, was it built as a muzzel loader and then converted? Does it have any value? Where can I find info on this weapon?

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Old July 12, 2005, 01:47 PM   #2
Jim Watson
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That is in the serial number range of the 1888 model Springfield "trapdoor." There ought to be a marking on the breechblock of US/Model/1888. I don't know what the "757" signifies, maybe a rack number at the post it was issued to. It was the last distinct official model in the series, about 65,000 made. All were manufactured from scratch, they had run out of Civil War rifle muskets to convert years before. I don't think any .45-70s were conversions, just the earliest .50-70s.

It sure looks real in your pictures although they are too dark for me to pick up much detail. Does it have a "ramrod bayonet" that slides out?

If original, correct, and authentic, value is substantial, many hundreds of bucks.
is just one of many sources.
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Old July 13, 2005, 06:37 AM   #3
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I use to have one just like yours. Check the left side of the stock for the cartouche (probably "SWP") with manufacturing date. Mine had 1892 which was just about the end run for Trapdoors.
Also, it does appear from the photgraphs that you have a ramrod bayonet.
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