US Model 1842 Springfield Musket Attributed to the Warrior "Good Lance" and Collected at Wounded Knee

.69 caliber. 34.5" barrel length. SN: NSN. Relic condition metal, iron mountings, walnut stock. Altered from full-length 42" barrel to 34.5", stock forend shortened to half-stock configuration roughly 3.5" in front of the rear barrel band, which is installed backwards. Lock markings mostly obscured by pitting but the three line marking at the tail can just barely be discerned reading "SPRING/FIELD/1847". Musket decorated with numerous brass tacks in the obverse butt and forend. Obverse butt is rack numbered "2/16". An animal hide lock cover with some of the hair still present, has been fashioned that surrounds the lock to protect it from the elements, which can slide forward to operate the lock. Mr. Ness' notes indicate that this musket was one of the guns collected in the aftermath of the Wounded Knee Massacre on December 29, 1890. Many of those collected guns became part of the Rock Island Arsenal collection. In the auction catalog from Historical Collectible Auctions, where this gun was purchased in September of 2000, the description identifies the gun as having been surrendered at Wounded Knee by Good Lance with an accompanying tag that identified the gun as having been his property. However, that tag appears to be missing, although the auction catalog clearly pictures this gun. Eight of the Wounded Knee guns from the Rock Island Arsenal collection were deaccessioned to Professor James W Ellis on May 18, 1897. Copies of the various correspondence and notes relating to their release are included with the gun along with a copy of the auction catalog and documents related to other Wounded Knee provenance guns collected from and released by the Rock Island Arsenal.

On December 29, 1890 at the height of the Ghost Dance movement, troops from the 7th Cavalry attempted to disarm a group of Miniconjou and Hunkpapa Sioux on the Pine Ridge Reservation. It is not exactly clear what went wrong or how the first shot was fired but in the immediate aftermath between 250 and 300 Native American men, women and children were killed and many were wounded, with 25 soldiers killed and 39 wounded. This tragic event was the last major action of the Indian Wars period. An important piece of American history that needs to be preserved so that such disgraceful events of the past are never forgotten. A wonderful, untouched Native American used gun with good provenance and potential direct identification to the Sioux warrior who carried it.

Provenance:The Collection of Larry Ness


Relic condition. Metal with a thick brown, uncleaned and untouched patina and heavy pitting. Markings mostly obscured, lock functional, bore poor. Stock well worn with wood loss and cracks, with the appearance of having been quite wet and poorly stored from some period of time. Despite the condition issues the overall appearance is really fantastic and completely authentic as well as being a wonderful piece of history.

Estimate: $8,000 - $10,000
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium

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