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Springfield Armory Model 1896 Krag Rifle 20th Kansas Infantry Ser No Range

Product Description

Springfield Armory Model 1896 Krag Rifle c. 1897

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This is a fine condition Springfield Armory Model 1896 Krag Rifle that falls into the serial number range of Model 1896 Krag Rifles issued to the 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment, which fought in the Philippines immediately after the Spanish American War. The serial number on this rifle is 79443, which places its manufacture in November 1897. Springfield Armory only manufactured 2,640 rifles during that month.

The Receiver on this rifle is the 2nd Type Krag receiver and is in very good condition retaining 90% of the original dark, oil quenched finish. The Magazine well portion of the Receiver shows normal operational wear and retains considerable original, dark oil finish. The left receiver bolt recess and safety lug both remain in the white with normal wear noted. The left side of the Receiver, where the nomenclature, manufacture and serial number stamps are located, retains 95% of the original dark, oil blackened finish. The chamber face of the Receiver retains considerable original dark finish. The Loading Gate lug and pin both retain the majority of their original finish. The Side Plate exhibits a mixed plum and pewter patina and the side plate screw slot is slightly marred.

The Loading Gate retains traces of the original dark finish with wear noted on the top edge of the gate thumb latch and the outer flat. The gate now exhibits generally a pewter patina with several areas of old pitting. The Follower remains correctly in the white and exhibits normal wear. The Carrier retains 90% of its original dark oil finish. The visible portions of the Hinge Bar also exhibit 90% of it the original dark oil finish. The Magazine Spring remains strong and the gate still opens and closes securely.

The Barrel on this rifle is its original Type 2, Service Rifle Barrel. The Barrel is 26” long. This barrel type, which was used from serial number 12,500 to 213,000 has a slightly longer chamber from the later Type 3 Barrel. The rear of the Barrel has the correct flat profile and it has the earlier, smaller extractor cut. The crown of the barrel is unmarred. The bore of this Rifle has strong rifling and a mirror finish but there is considerable frosting in the grooves. It is still in firing condition. The Barrel retains 95% of its original but faded blued finish on the outer surface

The Front Sight Stud is present and is solidly brazed to the barrel. The Stud retains the majority of its original blued finish that is fading to a plum patina. The Front Sight Post is present but is secured to the Stud with a replacement copper pin. The Front Sight Post is a later Type 4, which was developed for the Model 1901 Rear Sight and it sits .410” above the Stud at the highest point. The Front Sight Post retains generous original blued finish.

The Rifle is equipped with the Model 1902 Adjustable Rear Sight in fine condition. This Rifle was probably originally manufactured with the Model 1896 Rifle Adjustable Rear Sight since the Model 1898 Rear Sights were experiencing production delays. This Model 1902 Rear Sight is the Type 3. It has the “U” shaped sight notches on the top of the slide (leaf down) and drift slide. The Slide and Cap retain 95% of their original blue finish that now exhibits a plum patina. The Cap Screw is single slotted and retains the majority of its original finish. The Elevation Slide Binding Screw is the correct type with knurled edges. The Binding Screw retains 95% of its original blue finish. The Drift Slide retains 95% of its original blue finish and also exhibits a plum patina.

The Elevation Leaf face is in fine condition and has graduations to 2,000 yards (volley fire). The Rear Sight Base retains 95% of its original blue finish and is in fine condition. There is a serif “F” stamp just forward of the rear base screw. The Binding Lever used for windage is in very fine condition and retains 95% of its original blue finish that exhibits a muted blue patina. The Binding Lever works perfectly and the base adjusts for windage smoothly. This rear sight was probably installed in 1902 when the rifle was still on the property books of the 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment.

The Bolt is a fine condition and correct Type 4 with the shorter flat on the bottom of the bolt handle root. The Bolt is correctly polished and the bolt face is worn with areas of old corrosion. The Cocking Piece is in very good condition and is the correct Type 3 with the beveled lug and extended safety notch. The head or comb of the Cocking Piece has three full rows of serrations and two partial rows, front and rear. The comb now generally exhibits a light plum patina. The Bolt Sleeve is the correct Type 3 Sleeve. The Bolt Sleeve exhibits considerable wear and retains traces of the original dark oil finish.

The Extractor is the correct 3rd Type with the rounded portion near the rear portion where it connects to the sleeve. The Extractor main body and cartridge rim hook portion still retain traces of its original bright, tempered blue finish. The Safety Lock is the correct two-piece type that was press fitted together. The Safety Lock retains traces of its original case-hardened finish on both sides. The Spindle is still present with a strong spring and the Safety Lock functions perfectly.

The rifle sits in its original and fine Model 1892 Type 2A Rifle Stock that was modified to Type 3A configuration. The Stock has the correct flared bolt recess. The finger grooves are present and the upper and lower edges remain sharp. There is a chip missing from the left side adjacent to the side plate and receiver. As noted, this particular stock was originally a Type 2A stock that was for the Model 1892 Rifle with the ramrod channel. It has the original thin wrist and the forward sloping toe, which was added during modification. The Type 3A stock was designed to bring the early Type 2 stocks up to Model 1896 standards and most of these were modified in 1897 and 1898 at Springfield and the modified stocks were installed on new production rifles during that period. The Type 3A stock is distinguished by the type of ramrod channel filler. In the Type 3A, the ramrod channel was filled with a walnut dowel its entire length and, when viewed from the nose of the stock, there is a round end and a gap visible from the original squared off channel. The left side stock flat has the original boxed, clipped corner cartouche with the script initials “JSA” over the year “1894.” The initials are those of J. S. Adams, who was the Springfield Armory subinspector who took over inspection duties at Springfield upon the death of Master Armorer Samuel W. Porter in 1894. J. S. Adams inspected the majority of Krag rifles from 1894 until the end of production. The bottom of the Stock wrist has the correct, circle, script “P” firing proof stamp, just to the rear of a serif “M” inspection stamp, both of which are just to the rear of the trigger guard plate. The Stock is in very good condition with pronounced dings on the left side adjacent to the barrel channel and the chip noted previously. It retains its original oil finish and has never been sanded.

The original and correct Type 2 Butt Plate is present and retains traces of its original dark oil finish that has now taken on a pewter patina throughout. The tang screw is in fine condition and is unmarred. The lower butt plate screw is also single-slotted and unmarred. The trap door still opens and closes securely and has the assembly numbers stamped on the inside of the door.

The Handguard is a fine condition Model 1898 Rifle Type 5 for use with the Model 1898 and Model 1902 Rear Sights. All four recessed rivets are present. The Handguard fits securely to the rifle and there are only minor dings and scratches but no cracks noted. The Handguard retains its original oil finish and the color matches that of the Stock.

The Upper Band is the correct and mint Model 1898 Upper Band, 4th Type. The Band retains most of its original blue finish. The Stacking Swivel also retains the majority of its original blued finish and the dome head, single slot stacking swivel screw is unmarred. The Stacking Swivel moves freely. The Bayonet Lug retains the majority of its original finish. There is very little wear on the lug. The Upper Band Screw has a dome head and slightly marred single slot. The Band secures firmly to the stock and rifle when installed.

The Lower Band is the original and correct Model 1892 Rifle Lower Band and it retains 95% of its original blued finish. The right side of the Band has the correct serif “U” stamp. The Upper Sling Swivel also retains the majority of its original blued finish. The Band Screw’s single-slot is slightly marred The Lower Band pin, the head of which protrudes from the right side of the stock to help secure the band, is present. The Lower Band seats firmly on the rifle and secures the upper band without any play.

The Lower Sling Swivel Assembly, also known as the Butt Swivel Assembly, is the correct milled type. The Swivel Plate retains 95% of its original blue finish with wear noted on the boss. Both done head, single-slot screws are present and are unmarred. The Sling Swivel retains traces of its original blue finish. The Swivel moves freely.

The Trigger Guard exhibits considerable wear and displays a pewter patina with small areas of old pitting. Both dome head, single-slot screws are present and unmarred and both retain the majority of their now faded original blue finish. The original Type 3 Trigger is present and retains the majority of its original oil case-hardened finish with the trigger face beginning to exhibit freckling. The Trigger/Sear interface remains crisp and trigger release is still sharp.

As noted, this particular rifle is in the serial number range of Model 1896 Krag Rifles identified in the Springfield Research Service "Serial Numbers of U.S. Martial Arms, Volume 2," as having been on hand assigned to the 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment in 1898. In fact, serial number 79442, one number before this rifle’s serial number, is listed in the Springfield Research Service as having been issued to the 20th Kansas.

The 20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment was initially formed in Kansas in late April, 1898, as soon as war was declared on Spain to begin the Spanish American War. The 20th mustered into service between May 9th and 13th at Topeka, Kansas and it mustered in forty-six officers and 964 enlisted men. On May 15th, 1898, the regiment left Kansas for Camp Merritt at San Francisco, California. The 20th spent the entire summer of 1898 at Camp Merritt. Because of rampant disease at Camp Merritt (and just about every other mobilization and training camp during the Spanish American War), the 20th was moved to Camp Merriam on August 5, 1898. While at Camp Merriam, the Spanish American War ended with the armistice on August 12, 1898.

Around the same time, the Fifth Philippine Expedition was preparing to depart for the Philippine Islands and the 20th Kansas was selected to take part. The regiment’s three battalions steamed for the Philippines that fall with all three, on two separate steam ships, arriving in Manila on December 6, 1898. The Spanish American War officially ended on December 10th with the signing of the Treaty of Paris. War was not, however, over for the 20th Kansas.

While encamped at several tobacco warehouses in Manila, the 20th Kansas was ordered to the field in February 1899 when the Philippine American War began. The 20th Kansas was the first American unit to enter Caloocan on February 10, 1899. On March 25th, the regiment swam across the Tulihan River, captured an enemy blockhouse, and then fought at Malinta and Maycuayan on March 28th. That same day, a unit of the 20th Kansas swam across another river and captured eighty prisoners occupying earthworks on the opposite side. On March 31, 1899, the 20th Regiment entered Malalos, the capital of the Filipino forces. The next month, the 20th Kansas took part in advances towards Calumpit and, in May 1899, advanced on San Thomas. The regiment was involved in numerous small actions that summer.

On September 6, 1899, the 20th Kansas left the Philippines for the United States, arriving on October 10th. The regiment was mustered out of federal service on October 28, 1899. During its term of service, the 20th Kansas had three officers and nineteen enlisted soldiers killed in action with an additional eleven enlisted men dying of wounds received in combat. Thirty-five enlisted men died of disease.

This is an original Springfield Armory Model 1896 Krag Rifle that is quite rare by virtue of the fact that it sits in an original and correctly arsenal modified Model 1892 Rifle stock and that is in the serial number range to a Kansas Infantry Regiment that took part in combat in the Philippines. This rifle functions perfectly.

This rifle is an antique so it can be shipped to anyone. It will also come with a historical writeup and a CD containing all of the photos. I accept Visa and MasterCard and charge NO FEES. Please let me know if you have any questions or if you would like additional photos posted.

 

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