Page Index Toggle Pages: 1 Send TopicPrint
Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) '63 Sharps Carbine Serial # (Read 760 times)
JerryH
Oldtimer
*****
Offline


ASSRA Member #10876

Posts: 937
Location: Easton, CA
Joined: Nov 9th, 2014
'63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Oct 8th, 2021 at 7:47pm
Print Post  
I'm looking for help from someone who has any books on Civil War Sharps carbines. In particular a Model 1863 Sharps carbine.

It looks as though some books may contain serial numbers with reference to which units they were issued to. They may only list them in blocks of serial numbers.

I have tried the library but so far haven't had any luck getting any books from them.

Thanks,
JerryH
  

I'm not a complete idiot, some of my parts are missing.
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
George Babits
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 963
Joined: Sep 27th, 2012
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #1 - Oct 8th, 2021 at 9:09pm
Print Post  
Jerry,

There were several books written, but all are out of print.   The best one was a set of 8 or 10 volumes compiled in the 1990s.   Hopefully someone here has one or more of them.   I was able to find out that my 50-70 conversion was first issued to the First Michigan; then re-issued to the First Maryland.   After the war it was converted to 50-70 and issued to the First California and served in the Modoc War.   The records are pretty scanty and/or incomplete.   I could find nothing on the Spencer or Maynard carbines that I have.   There was one book by McCaully (I think) that had actual information on the person(s) a Sharps carbine was issued to.   Really nice to learn some of the history of what we now have.   Good luck.

George
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
JerryH
Oldtimer
*****
Offline


ASSRA Member #10876

Posts: 937
Location: Easton, CA
Joined: Nov 9th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #2 - Oct 9th, 2021 at 12:14am
Print Post  
Thanks George.

I like the history also. I always ask when buying something if there's any story that goes with it. 

Mine is also a 50-70 conversion. The book Sharps Carbines and Rifles by Coates & McAulay appears to be the one with personal information. I tried getting it in an inter-library loan but haven't heard anything yet. It's pretty pricey to buy not knowing if I'll find mine in it.

Jerry
  

I'm not a complete idiot, some of my parts are missing.
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
ndnchf
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 603
Joined: Mar 6th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #3 - Oct 9th, 2021 at 6:33am
Print Post  
Jerry - I have this one. It has a good bit of serial number information.
« Last Edit: Oct 10th, 2021 at 7:20am by ndnchf »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
George Babits
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 963
Joined: Sep 27th, 2012
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #4 - Oct 9th, 2021 at 9:51am
Print Post  
Yes, that is "THE" book.   Would you mind to look up serial numbers for some of us?

George
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
ndnchf
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 603
Joined: Mar 6th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #5 - Oct 9th, 2021 at 9:56am
Print Post  
Sure - be glad to try. I don't know that it has all numbers, but I can look.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
JerryH
Oldtimer
*****
Offline


ASSRA Member #10876

Posts: 937
Location: Easton, CA
Joined: Nov 9th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #6 - Oct 9th, 2021 at 11:21am
Print Post  
Thanks Steve. Sent you a PM.

Jerry
  

I'm not a complete idiot, some of my parts are missing.
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
George Babits
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 963
Joined: Sep 27th, 2012
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #7 - Oct 9th, 2021 at 8:37pm
Print Post  
Great.  Here are the serial numbers of the two Sharps carbines I have.  The one converted to 50-70 is sn. C,9557.   The one still in the original percussion is C, 11859.   Sure wish that I could have gotten that book when it came out.   

Thank you very much.

George
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
ndnchf
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 603
Joined: Mar 6th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #8 - Oct 10th, 2021 at 6:19am
Print Post  
George - sorry, but I found neither listed. 

However, close numbers include:
C9556 - 10th Illinois cavalry, Co. B
C9548 - 1st New Hamphshire cavalry, Co. M.

C11838, C11878 - 7th Indiana cavalry, Co. H and B.
C11841 - 1st Maryland cavalry, Co. I.

Steve
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
George Babits
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 963
Joined: Sep 27th, 2012
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #9 - Oct 10th, 2021 at 9:59am
Print Post  
Thank you very much Steve.  I had no information on the percussion one (c,11859) and only a bit of later information on the conversion (c,9557) which indicated it went to the First California Cavalry after conversion.

Really interesting to learn the history of these old carbines.

George
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Blackhawk
Junior Forum Member
**
Offline



Posts: 13
Joined: Mar 14th, 2016
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #10 - Oct 13th, 2021 at 9:03pm
Print Post  
Enjoyed reading the thread. I sent a PM to Steven in hopes he can assist yet another Sharps enthusiast.
  
Back to top
GTalk  
IP Logged
 
ndnchf
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 603
Joined: Mar 6th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #11 - Oct 14th, 2021 at 5:26am
Print Post  
Just a note about the serial number listings in the book. They are not all inclusive. The author gathered these from available hand written records. There are many gaps. I know it is disappointing if I cannot find your number. But I try to find one that is close to it. But that is no guarantee that yours was isdued to the same unit. 

The other important point is the "C" prefix on some numbers. When producution hit 99,999 units, they started using the C prefix to indicate 100,000. For example, C 1322 means 100,1322.  So if your Sharps has the "C", be sure to tell me.

Steve
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
George Babits
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 963
Joined: Sep 27th, 2012
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #12 - Oct 14th, 2021 at 9:34am
Print Post  
The Springfield Research Service books have a good bit of information.  Volume 4 seems to have a lot of data on the Sharps rifles and carbines.   I don't have either the Springfield books or McCaulay's book.  From the information I have gathered from both these sources, it seems like none of the arms were issued to units in blocks of consecutive serial numbers.   I would guess that if you found the serial number before and after yours, and they had both been issued to the same unit, then your's probably was too.   You also have to condiser that many carbines were replaced as the war went on.   Units with the Sharps would have them replaced with Spencers, and the Sharps carbines would be re-issued to another unit.   And then, when the Sharpes were converted to 50-70 they were re-issued again.   Record keeping  150 years ago wasn't anything like it is now.   Probably a lot fewer bean counters!

George
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
MrTipUp
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 687
Joined: Feb 19th, 2020
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #13 - Oct 14th, 2021 at 7:56pm
Print Post  
I would also guess that any issued Sharps - or, indeed, any issued gun - that was sent in for repair was replaced as quickly as possible from stores rather than leave the user weaponless.  When the repairs were finished, I'd further guess the gun went into storage for whomever needed one like it next rather than being returned to the previous user.

In short, all things considered, determining gun-to-unit assignment over that 4-year war is likely very much a matter of amazing luck.

Bill Lawrence
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
ndnchf
Oldtimer
*****
Offline



Posts: 603
Joined: Mar 6th, 2014
Re: '63 Sharps Carbine Serial #
Reply #14 - Oct 15th, 2021 at 9:36am
Print Post  
The book shows a number of instances where the same rifle was issued to multiple soldiers.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1
Send TopicPrint