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This conformation remained popular not only for gamekeepers but anyone else who placed a premium on good value.

Baker's has a catalog illustration from Pape of Newcastle showing "The Keeper's Gun" for six pounds, ten shillings--in the mid-1890's!

Obviously, a gun can't be earlier than its latest feature.The proof marks thus reveal that the bore is choked slightly. Because the proof marks tell us that this gun was made in the interval before choke became widely accepted.Although Greener did not discover the benefits of choke, he was the first gunmaker to perfect and publicize it, and he himself states that he only began to experiment with choke in the spring of 1874.Any and all suggestions about a gentle restoration are most welcome."2 years ago when Audrey got pregnant that’s when I started thinking about how much longer I wanted to do this…when we had Ember it became apparent it’s time to make our exit and pursue other projects we have going.And third, what we might take to be old-fashioned or outmoded features were often retained in the less expensive but sturdy guns offered by a firm to gamekeepers, or to those in the service, civil or military, or to explorers and travelers planning to be far from civilization and its attendant gunsmiths.It's difficult to distinguish who bought what, in other words, although David J.Faithful readers of "Hits and Misses" will doubtless recall my earlier post, "Dating a Double-Barreled Hammer Gun" ( This post is about dating a 12 gauge hammer gun by the well-known and prolific maker W. To adapt John Campbell's phrase in On the rib is "W. Scott & Son London." In 1862, William Middleditch Scott took over the Birmingham firm established in the 1840's by his father William Scott and his uncle Charles Scott.That post concerned a 10 gauge double with the virtually unknown name of C. Here, courtesy of that wonderful resource, Cornell Publications, is the cover of Scott's 1872 catalog, and, except for fastening the fore end with a wedge, the upper gun on the right (front ) cover is very close to mine: Although my Scott has a moderate degree of engraving, it has no street address preceding the "London" on the rib, an indication that it is what the 1872 catalog terms a "plain gun." It's easy to identify a Scott gun when the firm's name is on the locks and on the barrel rib.The chart below indicates that "CHOKE" did not appear as a proof mark until 1887.My reasoning was right, but polishing the barrels for re-browning revealed that "CHOKE" was stamped on the left barrel. The chart above gives 1887 as the earliest date for this mark, and it continued in use until the early 1900's.

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