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Re: Ramrod Bayonet Rifle
Posted by Dick Hosmer on Tuesday, 10 September 2013, at 10:13 a.m., in response to Ramrod Bayonet Rifle, posted by Haskell on Tuesday, 10 September 2013, at 3:43 a.m.
It is a real treat to get a question from someone who has done their homework!
The only additional point I'd make is that they were issued for trial, not just stuffed in a box - at least not right away, anyhow. By an INCREDIBLE coincidence, my 84XRRB (318991, still in original config.) was issued to a very distant cousin, Capt. William C. Manning, 23rd Infantry, Ft. Mackinac, MI. Have an SRS letter indicating return for repair, and the rifle has two cartouches, SWP/1885 and SWP/1887.
You are almost certainly correct in your assumption as to the rifle's origins. However, once rebuilt, they have totally lost their identity (and considerable rarity). The latch, rod, and front sight were changed to the new style, leaving only the serial number as witness.
You will not hurt anything by shooting it. Enjoy
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