September 26, 2018 O'Connor's Americana Collection
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 9/26/2018
This rifle, dated 1803, and inscribed "John Brady" on the patchbox lid, is the only Kentucky Longrifle known with a map engraved on the patchbox. This rifle is featured in an article by Walter O'Connor in the 2014 Winter Edition of "American Tradition" as well as an article in the "KRA Bulletin". The article is titled, "The John Brady Rifle: Its Map Patchbox And Related Accouterments" and features this rifle on pages 4-14. The original owner of this rifle was John Brady Jr., who was born in 1762 near Shippensburg, in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania. He was the fourth son of the famous Captain John Brady of noble Irish descent. When Washington moved his army to the banks of the Brandywine in 1777, John Brady Jr. was by his father's side with a rifle in his hands and greatly distinguished himself. Returning home to protect the Muncy frontiers, Captain Brady was ambushed and killed by Indians while en route with supplies from Fort Muncy to his own refuge on April 11, 1779. John Brady Jr. was married in 1785 and went on to become sheriff of Northumberland County in 1794. During his three year term, he was in the Whiskey rebellion, and a vivid account of the fiasco is recorded in the annals of Northumberland. He died in 1809 and is buried in Lewisberg, Pennsylvania. His rifle has graceful lines but is notably plain and utilitarian. It was evidently given to him in 1803 and remains well preserved today. The underside of the barrel is marked "J.W.". Though it is void of carving and inlay, except for a simple crescent moon on the cheekrest. It exhibits one bit of decoration which makes it unique and distinguishes it from all other Kentucky rifles known to collectors. Engraved upon its 9-1/2" four piece brass patchbox is a quaint map depicting the waterways, villages and fortifications which figured so decisively in the life and times of its owner. This was a mode of art which customarily adorned the powder horn and assisted the traveler. The patchbox is also inscribed "JOHN BRADY/ 1803 At/Muncy" and features a compass on the lid. Patchbox depicts the Susquehanna River, Shamokin Creek, Shamokin, Fort Augusta, Sunbury, North Branch, Shamokin Island, Chillisqueque Creek, Warrior Run, Muncy Creek, Fort Muncy, and several other small creeks. The brass side plate features a deer and an Indian paddling down river in a canoe with a rocker panel border around the perimeter. There is a small vacant brass escutcheon and a pinned unengraved toeplate. The partially figured full length maple stock is of classic Lehigh County form and features a Roman nose buttstock. The lock has sprigs of engraving at the tail and was converted to percussion during the rifles period of use. The rifle is in very good condition. The octagonal barrel retains a dark brown patina and still shows deep rifling. Only some minor corrosion at the breech. The lock is crisp and functions well, retaining a dark patina matching that of the barrel. All of the brass furniture retains a dark unpolished patina. The stock is excellent with no restoration and shows only a few scattered marks from use. The accessories associated with this rifle include: A) Panther's tooth found in the rifle's patchbox with a period note that reads "Panther's Tooth Captured by one of the Brady Family". B) An antler handled knife with traces of "Warranted" on blade and a note which reads "Found on the site of the Brady Stockade by William McCarty son of Benjamin McCarty about the year 1790. received from the widow of William McCarty 1872 by his son George McCarty and is still in the family", signed Harry McCarty, Muncy PA. C) A wrapped eye ax made from a Swiss planer blade and described in a note dated 1879, which reads "Tomahawk supposed to of been made from an old sweedish plane iron by the Indians. Was found by S.G. Cartledge in 1862 with other Indian curiosities including Pikes made from bayonets, crows feet, axes, arrow heads, at old Fort Brady at the junction of the West-branch of the Susquehanna and Muncy Creek Lycoming Co, Pennsylvania, 1879." D) A portion of a 1777 pay receipt signed by Captain John Brady (one of only two known signatures for him) and written in his hand. E) An old note found in the barrel, which describes the rifle when it was a part of the John Laidacker Collection. F) Letter in the hand of John Jr.'s brother, Hugh Brady (1768-1851) recommending a Junior Officer for promotion, and G) A 1780 dated delivery to Bedford, Pennsylvania of supplies, listing Sam Brady. The rifle includes an archive of research, provenance, and historical information on the rifle, the Brady family, and Muncy. Included is an original copy of the limited edition (only 150) 1891 printed "Sketches of the Life and Indian Adventures of Captain Samuel Samuel Brady", a copy of the "American Tradition" magazine featuring this group of items, a hand-drawn rendering of the map on the patchbox by Walter O'Connor, many old photographs of the rifle and accessories, and copies of information pertaining to the Brady family and Muncy. This is an outstanding group of historic items that have been extensively researched and well-preserved. CORRECTION: Attributed to Gideon Angstadt.
Ax, Original Brady Documents, Knife, Panther Tooth
Barrel Length
46 - 5/8"
.48 smoothbore
Drop at Comb
Drop at Heel
FFL Status
Length of Pull
Lehigh County
Kentucky Longrife
Serial Number
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $4,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $30,000.00
Estimate: $8,000 - $15,000
Number Bids: 28
Auction closed on Wednesday, September 26, 2018.
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