#821 US M1860 Spencer Carbine
This is a straight Civil War carbine, as you would expect to find one today that had, like this one, certainly seen actual Civil War service.
The metal is covered all over with a smooth brown patina but no noticeable rust. The patent markings on top of the receiver are not strong but they are legible. The serial number is clear and strong. The wood is rough, showing numerous handling marks as well as some long ago missing wood on the left side below the sling swivel (see pic) as well as a longitudinal crack in the stock which is visible in the photos as well. The bore is clean with full, distinct lands and grooves, somewhat shiny but it does show a little bit of light surface uneveness. The action is strong, functions perfectly, locks up nice and crisply and all the feed pieces indicate that the repeater action would function perfectly. The hammer and trigger are strong and crisp and let off smartly. This carbine still has its original magazine tube spring and follower and all of that functions perfectly. If you wanted to use this rifle for reenactment purposes or for something special at the range there is no reason you couldn't enjoy shooting it. Note that a rifle is missing its original fastening screw below the trigger guard but a new-made replacement is included (although it will need a bit of specific fitting). The lower sling swivel loop is also missing.
All-in-all this is a wonderful, genuine, solid Civil War veteran that you could still use today.
Wayne Gagner (email@example.com)
Re: Spencer carbine
Date: 8/25/2014, 8:35 pm
In Response To: Re: Spencer carbine (Steve Tatham)
Terry Grimm here from Anderson Texas. I may be able to help a little with your Spencer carbine serial No. 33530 . You see the Spencer army and navy rifles were from 1 to 10,999. The first carbine serial # was 11000 it was delivered to the Army Armory Ordnance Dep. January 20, 1864 and the last model 1860 was delivered April 15, 1865 serial No. 62000.The first Model 1865s were delivered on April 3,1865 serial # 1 to 320.
I have a Spencer carbine serial # 32873. It was delivered to the Armory August 31, 1864, your carbine was delivered September 10,1864. One more thing the serial numbers on the 1860 model is on the receiver and under side of the barrel. The barrel is 22 inch, round with 6 groves. the cartridge is 56-56 and lower breach block has no spring extractor and the top of the rear sight ladder is in a large V shape. The sight on the 1865 to 1867 was rounded at the top of the ladder with a little v notch. I hope this information helps you some. I can not help any more with the serial number and to whom they were issued. I'm looking for that information too and I have had no luck so far.
The 1860 Model Spencer Carbines that were manufactured between 1863-1865, had serial numbers falling between 11,001 and 62,000. The US Army received 45,733 of these in number and may not be matched by serial numbers. Your Carbine with that serial number would have been near the end of the production run. It may have or may not have been used in the civil war late. But more than likely it was a war time surplus and issued out west during the Indian Wars. There is a possible chance it could have been sent to France in 1870 for the Franco-Prussian War, many were sent over there. With all the minor changes to these carbines over the years and up until production stopped, about 1869, these changes sometime give clues to when and where they were used.
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