Beyond rare, actually, 1862 small bore (.455 caliber) Civil War military sharpshooter rifle as known imported to the Confederacy early in the War from England. The Tower Enfield rifle pattern weapon has all brass furniture and a specialty bronze tipped ramrod. The lockplate is clearly and crisply marked “1862” and “Turners Patent” is stamped on the barrel below the rear sight. A “globe” front sight is affixed at the muzzle and a mount behind the barrel tang is present for a rear “peep” sight. “489” is stamped in the wood below the trigger guard AND on the bottom of barrel. The weapon has Birmingham proof marks on the top of the barrel and “T. Turner” is stamped on bottom of barrel.
Thomas Turner is documented as selling custom and modified standard weapons to the Confederacy through their agents Sinclair Hamilton and Company for the use of Rebel sharpshooters in 1861 and 1862. This weapon is also known as a .45 Kerr Rifle with collectors and military historians as several score of a similar configuration were manufactured by that firm for the express sale, via the Union Blockade, to the Confederates. Fewer than half a dozen of the Turner sharpshooter weapons are known to have survived making them far more rare than a Whitworth Rifle. As typical for Confederate imported weapons, the gun is completely devoid of visible British crown markings such as the War Department “Broad Arrow” stamping.
The weapon still retains the original sight adjustment key, which is affixed to the nipple protector chain.