Louis Weinbrenner Target/Sporter Percussion Rifle
A top quality .42 cal. percussion rifle marked on the top barrel flat "L.W. Chippawa C.W". Louis Weinbrenner was born at Rhine Priesson, Germany, about 1828. He served his apprenticeship at Westphalia, immigrating to Canada in the late 1840's.
He was employed by Mike Mater and later married Mater's cook and set up in business for himself in competition with his old employer.
Weinbrenner was an excellent craftsman in both wood and metal as this rifle will attest.
Weinbrenner died in 1898 and was buried in the cemetery at German Town in the Niagra Peninsula.
Reference "The Canadian Gunsmiths 1608 to 1900 by S. James Gooding.
This rifle weighs 12 pounds and it appears it could have been a light target rifle or a heavy sporter. The octagon barrel is turned round at the muzzle for a bullet starter and has a shallow notch for an alignment projection. The top tang is drilled and tapped for what was probably a lollypop type sight, now missing. The front blade is of nickel silver with the rear barrel sight screw adjustable for elevation and drift adjustable for windage. The barrel diameter is 1 1/16" X 33 1/8" long.
The lockplate is marked "Henry Parker/Warranted". Perhaps the product of Henry Parker Trenton, N.J. as Weindbrenner was known to travel to Buffalo, N.Y. to purchase parts. He would leave Chippawa at 3 a.m., walk 15 miles to Ft. Erie, cross the Niagra River by ferry, purchase his supplies and return the same day, walking. Several of the inlays on this rifle were purchased from catalogues of the time.
All furniture is of nickel silver consisting of a fancy capbox, 2 harts, a reclining Deer, a very fancy backplate, trigger and buttplate.
The attention to detail is obvious by the steel screws attaching the nickel silver wedge escutcheons and a small tapered screw installed in the side of the lockplate as an external means to lighten the trigger "set" by altering the sear engagement.
The 1/2 stock is of walnut with a pewter nose cap. The engraving is a large scroll and leaf pattern with punch dot background. Pieces covered are the buttplate, triggerguard, patchbox escutcheon plates, lower rod pipe and top tang.
The hammer is a beautifully done Dolphin's hood with sculptured eyes and a punch dot "Baby".
The cleaning rod/rammer is of hickory with brass tip and a tapped steel screw at the small end.
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