December 13-15, 2022 Collectible Firearms & Militaria
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/14/2022
Interesting German over/under combination gun built by famed maker Wilhelm Brenneke in December of 1935. Blued 26 - 3/4" Krupp Laufstahl 16 gauge barrel over 7x65R rifle barrel with solid matted rib and ramped bead front sight. Rail has had original claw mounts taken off and gunsmith made rail installed to mount a Weaver K-4 scope. Game scene engraved coin finish action with Hirsch scene, scalloped rear, and Kersten locking mechanism. Horn trigger guard with double triggers (front being a set). Checkered walnut pistol grip stock with cheekpiece, horn buttplate and grip cap. Matching checkered forearm with Anson & Deeley latch. Comes with set of Lyman reloading dies for the rifle. CONDITION: 90% barrel blue with missing rear sight. Action retains most of original coin finish with some handling wear. Wood has scratches and usage marks with traces of original finish. Great bores with good mechanics and usable optics. Accompanied by a small file of paperwork regarding its capture by an American Soldier during the waning days of World War II. Written history provided states that this firearm was acquired by Private Willard C. Tompkins, who served with Company L, 414th Infantry Regiment, 104th Infantry Division. Just days before the end of the war in Germany, Tompkins and a friend crossed the Elbe River on a very important mission: to souvenir hunt for guns and binoculars. During their search, the pair stumbled upon a “huge mansion that even had its own private railroad cars on the property”. Any US Infantryman would recognize a place with that description as a prime target to accomplish their mission for souvenir recovery. Tompkins and his friend entered the mansion where they soon found themselves sorting through a cabinet full of guns and binoculars. As they were examining their loot, a woman entered the room, startling them. The pair of soldiers tried to communicate to the woman who said she could only understand English when spoken slowly. The woman then introduced herself as the Countess of Silesia and was not mad at their souvenir hunting, but instead asked them to help her cross the river and reach the safety of the Allied lines. Tompkins told the woman that they could not get her across, as there were guards at each end of the pontoon bridge. At the time, he was examining a drilling when the woman handed him this combination gun and remarked that this was the finest gun in the mansion. After the encounter, Tompkins and his friend made their way back to American lines but soon encountered a German patrol, which forced him to hide the gun in a drainpipe. They evaded the patrol and Tompkins recovered the gun the next day. As soon as he recovered the gun, he oiled it and mailed it home. He and his friend were later assigned to guard duty at the bridge and he lamented to the day he died about how easily he could have gotten her across the bridge. Tompkins treasured the gun until 1972 when he gave it to another owner stating that he cared for it for 27 years but could no longer hunt any more. He passed away on Flag Day, 1976. The consigner suggests that judging by the area in which the 414th Infantry Regiment was located towards the end of the war, it can be deduced that the mansion Tompkins stumbled upon was the Schloss Borln and the woman he met was the Countess Isa of Silesia. While that Schloss is in the 104th IDs area of operation, it is behind the Elbe River. This is a very nice combination gun with a great history in very desirable chambering! DLM
Name
Value
Accessories
Dies
Barrel Length
26 - 3/4"
Barrel Wall Thickness
Caliber/Bore
16 / 7X65R
Chamber
Choke
Drop At Comb
Drop at Heel
FFL Status
Curio & Relic
Internal Bore Diameter
Length of Pull
Manufacturer
Wilhelm Brenneke
Model
Combination Gun
Paperwork
History papers
Serial Number
43158
Weight
(C) WILHELM BRENNEKE OVER/UNDER COMBINATION GUN CAPTURED BY PVT. WILLARD C. TOMPKINS, 104TH INFANTRY DIVISION.
Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $1,000.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $3,528.00
Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000
Number Bids: 11
Auction closed on Thursday, December 15, 2022.
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