Lot 2018: Documented Factory Engraved and Inscribed Winchester Deluxe Model 1886 Fancy Sporting Lever Action Rifle with Factory Letter
6th May 2017
Winchester Model 1886 lever action rifle manufactured in 1887. The rifle has a blued barrel, magazine, bolt and loading gate. The forearm cap, receiver, hammer and lever are color casehardened. The forearm cap and sides and top of the hammer and sides and bottom of the lever are factory engraved with tight scrollwork and line and scallop border work. "H.S. New" is inscribed in script letters on the left side of the receiver. This may be for Harry Stewart New (1858-1937), a captain in the Spanish-American War, Republican senator in the Indiana State Senate and U.S. Senate, the Chairman of the Republican National Committee in 1907-1908, and Postmaster General under President Harding and President Coolidge. His father, John C. New, was the U.S. Treasurer under President Grant. The rifle has a full octagon barrel with four-shot, half-magazine. The barrel has a dovetail mounted ramp front sight with serrated steel blade and a Winchester low-profile, flat top, sporting style rear sight. The pistol grip stock and forearm are highly figured, fancy grade walnut with Winchester "Style H" checkering and a high gloss piano finish. Stock has a black checkered, hard rubber, shotgun buttplate embossed with round Winchester logo. The pistol grip has an ebony or horn inlay. The top barrel flat is roll-stamped: "-MANUFACTURED BY THE-/-WINCHESTER REPEATING ARMS CO. NEW HAVEN. CONN. U.S.A.-" in two lines ahead of the rear sight. The caliber designation "45-90 W.C.F." is roll-stamped on the top of the barrel between the rear sight and the receiver. The upper receiver tang is factory drilled and tapped and roll-stamped: "-MODEL 1886-". The 1884 and 1885 patent dates are roll-stamped on the lower tang behind the trigger, and the serial number "11964" is stamped in script numerals between the tang screws. This rifle is complete with a Winchester factory letter dated 1998 which describes it as a rifle in 49-90 with an octagon barrel, plain trigger, half magazine, checkered pistol grip stock, shotgun butt, hard rubber buttplate and 4 cartridge magazine. It confirms the factory engraving on the lever, tip and hammer at a cost of $2.00 as well as the "H.S. New" inscribed on the frame. The rifle was received in the warehouse on December 21, 1887, and shipped on the same day. Although not listed in the 1998 dated letter, an included 2017 dated Cody Firearm Records Office serial number verification shows a repair and return date of January 24, 1895. The custom front sight may have been installed by Winchester at this time.
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