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SN 60. Bbl measures 46″ with 1.65″ rifled bore. Hotchkiss mountain guns were first tested by the U.S. Army in 1881, having been purchased from the famous Hotchkiss Company in Paris. The guns were ideal for use in rugged terrain, such as the American West, since the entire weapon weighed only 362 pounds, and could be broken down into parts so that a gun and its ammunition could be transported on three mules. The gun could fire quite rapidly since it was used fixed (but separately primed) ammunition. In fact, this was the first U.S. artillery piece to utilize fixed metallic-cartridge type ammunition. Two basic types of ammunition were issued, explosive shells with impact fuzes, and canister. The former was effective to 3500 yards, and the latter to a few hundred, against personnel or animals. Four of the guns made history on December 29, 1891 at Wounded Knee Creek, Dakota Territory. They had been positioned on a hill near where U.S. Troops were disarming Sioux Indians when firing broke out in the Indian camp. The battery began firing to support the troops. The Sioux lost over 150 of their number, and were so badly beaten that they never fought again, thus finally ending the Indian Wars. Hotchkiss 2-pounders were also used in the Spanish-American war. This particular example made in 1881 is as fine and complete example as can be found. Accompanying this cannon is an extensive file of historical and technical details. Gun was converted to centerfire by Rock Island Arsenal in 1905. The friction primer fitting remains on the breech, so the external appearance on the gun is much the same, but a percussion firing pin has been added inside the breech block. The firing mechanism is automatically cocked on opening the breech and released by pulling on the lanyard attached to the release loop below the breech handle. Prior to gun’s conversion it was listed as being in Manila at the end of the Spanish American War in 1902. A large framed photo of the famous Hotchkiss battery taken shortly after the battle is included. Though dated 1881 this gun was contracted as 1 of 11 guns purchased by the US Army in 1880. Accompanying this gun are 15 centerfire cartridge casings and lead projectiles and a fine reproduction adjustable sight that fits gun mount on breech. An original wood-and-brass cleaning rod is mounted in the rod brackets on the side of the carriage, and an original corrugated steel 22-round ammunition shipping drum is also included. This fine Hotchkiss rifle has large file of research and provenance. PROVENANCE: Reilly Gunter Collection; Springfield Arsenal, LLC Artillery Collection. CONDITION: Fine overall. Surfaces all appear orig except carriage was repainted long ago. Markings crisp and clear, excellent crisp rifled bore, and fully functional. 4-54096 (20,000-30,000) – Lot 2053

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Auction: Firearms - March 2015
Please Note: All prices include the hammer price plus the buyer’s premium, which is paid by the buyer as part of the purchase price. The prices noted here after the auction are considered unofficial and do not become official until after the 46th day.