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 Post subject: National Arms Co. 12ga SxS
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2009 5:20 pm 
Utility Grade

Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2008 8:36 pm
Posts: 19
Location: Massachusetts
I just picked up a National Arms Co. 12ga SxS. Barrel marked "CAST STEEL" on the top and has Belgian proofs. I'm still trying to decode the proofs. The gun is serialized and matching.
I know from searching around that this doesn't sound like a Crescent Arms or is it?
I assume it's black powder shells only?
I'll try and get some pics up soon if it'll help dating and identifying. It was in a basement (warm/dry) for a long time but it's dirty and most of it's finish is gone.


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 Post subject: Re: National Arms Co. 12ga SxS
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2009 6:27 pm 
Diamond Grade
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Joined: Sun Apr 30, 2006 11:16 pm
Posts: 1325
Location: Glendale, AZ
"Cast steel" usually refers to the Huntsman hot-rolled crucible steel process of 1742 used to make farm implements. A more modern use refers to the Bessemer process of 1856 for converting pig iron to steel. A sheet is folded over a mandrel and the long edge hammer welded to form a barrel.
National Arms was one of the Folsom import trade names
http://www.picturetrail.com/sfx/album/view/20091267

Under no circumstance would I fire that gun.

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Put your trust in God; but mind to keep your powder dry! Oliver Cromwell


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 Post subject: Re: National Arms Co. 12ga SxS
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2009 6:34 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2007 11:12 am
Posts: 3330
Location: WA/AK
The William Read & Sons, Boston, Mass., catalogue from circa 1899 carries a line of cheap Belgian hammer guns under the National Arms Co. name. They were priced from $9 to $12 with back-action rebounding locks and $12 to $18 with bar-action rebounding locks.

National Arms Co. was also the name of the first company Ansley H. Fox incorporated in Baltimore, Maryland, on December 9, 1897. As far as we know they never produced a gun and the next year with new blood and capital became the Fox Gun Co., Balto., Md., U.S.A. and for the last half of 1898 and all of 1899 produced a gun designed by Ansley H. Fox.


Last edited by Researcher01 on Fri Jun 05, 2009 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: National Arms Co. 12ga SxS
PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2009 12:53 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Wed Dec 24, 2008 10:42 pm
Posts: 3566
First, I know nothing at all about farm implements.
I have four listings for shotguns with the name National Arms Co.
All are "Trade Brand Name" shotguns
1. Hammer double, Belgian made by Henri Pieper or Anciens Establissments Pieper (same company) of Leige Belgium
2. Hammerless double made by Crescent Fire Arms Co of Norwich,Ct.
3. Single barrel also made by Crescent Fire Arms.
4. Slide (pump) action made by Marlin Firearms Co.
Look on the bottom of the barrels under the forearm for proof marks.
If as I suspect that the gun is Belgian there will be the letters "ELG" in an oval with a crown over that. If so the gun was made some time between 1890 and 1914 when WW 1 cut off exports and it will have damascus barrels and was designed for black powder ammunition.
I strongly recommend that you do not try to shoot it.


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 Post subject: Re: National Arms Co. 12ga SxS
PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2009 4:12 pm 
Utility Grade

Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2008 8:36 pm
Posts: 19
Location: Massachusetts
Thanks for the replies. I will not be shooting this one. Interesting history though.
It does have exposed hammers and the ELG mark.
I need another wall hanger like I need a hole in the head. I'll see if my brother wants it :wink:


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