Breech-Loading Conversion of a Harper’s Ferry 1841 “Mississippi Rifle”


Breech-Loading Conversion of a Harper’s Ferry 1841 “Mississippi Rifle”

(Image: Screenshot from video)

This is an interesting old rifle… it’s a breech-loading conversion of a Harper’s Ferry “Mississippi rifle,” made on the Merrill design.

If you like listing to Ian talk, you’ll have a solid 5 minutes of fun before you get to see the actual action, which is why I came.

Also disappointing is the fact that he spends more time lecturing about Jeff Davis than discussing the action, which appears quite well-designed and plenty strong… but like many YouTube commenters, I’m most curious about the ring on the “breech plug,” which most likely originally contained some sort of malleable material to act as a gas seal. Alas, Ian speeds on past this interesting mechanical function to discuss the brass fixtures on the stock.

Is it worth a watch? Most certainly!

This .58-caliber rifle was auctioned on September 12, 2020, but at the time of this writing the sale price hasn’t been entered on Rock Island’s website.

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Editor & Contributing Writer Russ Chastain is a lifelong hunter and shooter who has spent his life learning about hunting, shooting, guns, ammunition, gunsmithing, reloading, and bullet casting. He started toting his own gun in the woods at age nine and he's pursued deer with rifles since 1982, so his hunting knowledge has been growing for more than three and a half decades. His desire and ability to share this knowledge with others has also grown, and Russ has been professionally writing and editing original hunting & shooting content since 1998. Russ Chastain has a passion for sharing accurate, honest, interesting hunting & shooting knowledge and stories with people of all skill levels.

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