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Item #43209

Fenian Brotherhood Needham Conversion of a US Model 1863 Musket

  • Maker: US Military
  • Model: Needham
  • Caliber: .58

  • Description: NSN, .58 CF, 37 barrel with a fine, bright bore that has some traces of freckling within the grooves along its length. This is a cartridge conversion of an Alfred Jenks-made, "BRIDESBURG" marked musket that has an overall plum-brown patina with areas of even, dark freckling throughout on both the lock and barrel. The walnut stock has a dark brown, added varnish finish with scattered light handling marks throughout, and even pitting on the buttplate and trigger guard. The rifle comes with its original metal ramrod and the lock is fully functional. The two-piece stock has the "V" cut under the middle band present on the rifles used by the Fenian Brotherhood during their unsuccessful 1870 Canadian incursion, allowing disassembled muskets to be transported in trunks to the Canadian border. According to Graham Burnsides article in The Gun Report ("The Fenian Musket"; February, 1990), all of the Needham conversions were performed in secret at a facility in Trenton, NJ, rented for the purpose by one P.J. Meehan, who also supervised the entire operation. This is a good-near very good example of a little-known secondary military rifle, used by Irish nationalists in a doomed plot to secure Irish independence. Antique