Object Title

Flintlock muzzle-loading presentation rifle - By Tatham

Flintlock muzzle-loading presentation rifle - By Tatham

Date

about 1820

Object Number

XII.623

Provenance

Old Tower Collection

Physical Description

High quality throughout. Octagonal barrel with ramrod-rib retaining much of the browned finish. Backsight with single folding leaf; constricted breech inlaid with double gold lines and with TATHAM LONDON. Immediately in front of the breech the barrel bears a stamp of the Royal Arms overlaid with gold. Rifling of ten grooves. Lock with spur-necked cock, waterproof pan (gold lined) and safety-catch, engraved with foliage and with the name of the maker Tatham. Platinum bushed vents. The original bluish case hardened finish is preserved. Stock with short fore-end to which the barrel is secured by two slides. The butt has a cheek-piece and a butt-trap with hinged cover. Blued steel mounts engraved with foliage and trophies, on the cover of the patchbox engraved with a stag. A button situated on the top of the buttplate tang acts as the release mechanism for the patchbox.The trigger-guard has a projecting scroll or spur rest for the hand. A swivel is located beneath the wrist. Missing ramrod.

Techniques

Handmade, Engraved, Inlaid

Dimensions

BarrelLength30.5in.
BarrelLength775mm
OverallLength45.7in.
OverallLength1162mm
OverallWeight3.56kg
OverallWeight7.8lb oz

Firearms/Artillery

Serial Number nvn

Calibre

.577 in

Inscriptions and Marks

Maker
TATHAM LONDON (Italics)
Breech
Inlaid in gold
Maker
Tatham
Lockplate
Engraved

Associations

Notes

The Royal Armouries has 28 pieces from this series by Tatham within its collection. After studying the rifles it has been found that there are a further 48 pieces missing. It is stated in the inventory of 1915 that the rifles were intended as presents for the Native American Chiefs, but in view of their high quality this seems unlikely. It is more probable that they were simply a standard government gift. The rifles were thought to have been deposited in 1850 at the Tower.

Henry Tatham the maker was working from 1800-1833 and had premises at 37 Charring Cross London. From 1801-1814 he was partners with Durs Egg.