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Model 1890 29 inch barrel
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October 12, 2023 - 8:53 pm
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I have a Model 1890 that I picked up about 30 years ago locally in New York.  For the purpose of this post I will keep my remarks short.

It is NOT in wonderful condition, but according to Ned Schwing’s book on Slide Actions, it is rare because of the barrel length. It was inspected by George Madis and Ron Schmitt over ten years ago at one of the Erie PA shows.  Both were convinced the barrel was original.  In my opinion all the metal was refinished in nickel by someone other than Winchester circa 1908 because there is an oval medallion inlaid in the buttstock bearing the name Margaret Cornish 1908″.

I would like to discuss it with someone more knowledgeable than me.

Jim

Warwick, NY

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October 12, 2023 - 9:47 pm
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If Madis passed judgement on it, I’d say there’s no further question of originality.  To find out the connection of Cavendish with the rifle, which is the most interesting aspect, consulting an experienced genealogist would produce the fastest results.  (Had one on this site, but he passed away.)  Of course, there are dozens of genealogical research websites, though it will be difficult to use them without some idea of where she lived.

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October 12, 2023 - 10:29 pm
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If the barrel markings look original … and at 29 inches … just what length might it have been shortened from?  

As far as the Madis endorsement, it was my observation that George didn’t enjoy delivering bad news.

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October 12, 2023 - 10:39 pm
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steve004 said
If the barrel markings look original … and at 29 inches … just what length might it have been shortened from?  

As far as the Madis endorsement, it was my observation that George didn’t enjoy delivering bad news.  

I agree.  Take a George Madis endorsement with a grain of salt.  Any he reviewed were good, better, or best.  There was no bad.

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October 12, 2023 - 10:51 pm
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Photographs of the rifle in question, and especially of any and all roll markings on the barrel, would go a long way to determining originality.

I, for one, would love to see it.

BRP

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October 12, 2023 - 11:45 pm
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steve004 said
As far as the Madis endorsement, it was my observation that George didn’t enjoy delivering bad news. 

No one does, but deceiving someone who trusts your judgement is contemptible.  It’s the equivalent of lying, when you lead someone to believe his gun is worth more than it actually is.  Everyone knows there’s PLENTY of bad news in gun collecting, so to pretend otherwise is ridiculous.

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October 13, 2023 - 10:13 am
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I will try to add images in the next couple of days.

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October 13, 2023 - 12:41 pm
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clarence said

steve004 said

As far as the Madis endorsement, it was my observation that George didn’t enjoy delivering bad news. 

No one does, but deceiving someone who trusts your judgement is contemptible.  It’s the equivalent of lying, when you lead someone to believe his gun is worth more than it actually is.  Everyone knows there’s PLENTY of bad news in gun collecting, so to pretend otherwise is ridiculous.

  

Like all of us, the man was not perfect.  I do know he was passionate about Winchesters.  I also appreciated how generous he was with his time.  I had several extended phone conversations with him and enjoyed them very much.  

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October 13, 2023 - 5:08 pm
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It may be possible to get info on this rifle if the serial number is in a range that the Cody Firearms Museum can research for you.

https://centerofthewest.org/explore/firearms/firearms-records/winchester/

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October 13, 2023 - 11:12 pm
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clarence said

steve004 said

As far as the Madis endorsement, it was my observation that George didn’t enjoy delivering bad news. 

No one does, but deceiving someone who trusts your judgement is contemptible.  It’s the equivalent of lying, when you lead someone to believe his gun is worth more than it actually is.  Everyone knows there’s PLENTY of bad news in gun collecting, so to pretend otherwise is ridiculous.

  

Its more a matter of focusing on the good points, and delivering the bad news in a more tactful manner than some are accustomed.  The last thing anyone wants to do (or maybe they do) when confronted by someone who presents a family heirloom or a recent purchase that has them beaming with pride over a gun they are requesting an opinion of, then smacking them over the head with the facts and kicking them in the gonads in the same pass.  As ambassadors to the wide world of Winchester collecting, the last thing anyone wants is to discourage folks from collecting because someone was less than tactful in letting them know they have a clunker. 

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October 14, 2023 - 12:07 am
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1892takedown said

Its more a matter of focusing on the good points, and delivering the bad news in a more tactful manner than some are accustomed.  The last thing anyone wants to do (or maybe they do) when confronted by someone who presents a family heirloom or a recent purchase that has them beaming with pride over a gun they are requesting an opinion of, then smacking them over the head with the facts and kicking them in the gonads in the same pass.  As ambassadors to the wide world of Winchester collecting, the last thing anyone wants is to discourage folks from collecting because someone was less than tactful in letting them know they have a clunker.

Well then, what IS the “tactful” way to impart the bad news?  Do you really think you’ve done someone a favor by misleading them about condition, originality, & esp., value?  How is some potential “collector” to be properly educated when facts he should be made aware of are concealed for fear his tender feelings may be hurt?  Are we discussing grown-ups or some teen-age kid who inherited grandpa’s butchered old clunker.  God protect ME from all such Do-Gooders!

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October 14, 2023 - 12:26 am
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Im not saying you should be, or have to be deceptive, rather, its all in the delivery.  If you cant figure that out then Im afraid I have nothing more to offer.

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October 14, 2023 - 12:47 pm
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While not a certainty, I’m optimistic that had any of us been present when George examined this rifle, we would have delivered the same opinion.  And let’s remember, the opinion only extended to the length of the barrel.  The original poster has already acknowledged metal refinishing.  I’d love to see pictures.  Barrel markings and muzzle/front sight photos would be key.

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October 14, 2023 - 3:18 pm
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The original poster has already acknowledged metal refinishing. steve004 said

That’s why I don’t think the brl length is particularly important; interesting, but not critical to value considering gun’s overall cond. Who the gun was made for or presented to, that’s what I’d try to find out, were the gun mine. Could she have been a performer in a “Wild-West” show?  They often used nickeled guns.

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October 16, 2023 - 10:34 pm
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James Nauwens said
I have a Model 1890 that I picked up about 30 years ago locally in New York.  For the purpose of this post I will keep my remarks short.

It was inspected by George Madis and Ron Schmitt over ten years ago at one of the Erie PA shows. 
  

Not to offend but you may need to check your memory banks. If it was over 10 years but not over 20, then It wasn’t the George Madis.

Madis was been gone to the heavenly place 20 years now. George did have a way of delivering bad news if he wanted to. My old man recalled him flat out asking a fellow collector, “You know it is a FAKE? But you knew that when you bought it didn’t you?”

The first thing George pointed out to my father when he showed him his 1st Model 76 SRC was that the rear sight was a replacement. Which dad already knew because the dovetail was close to the receiver and would need the proper reversed carbine sight. It only took us 15 years to find a proper replacement. Got it on Ebay all the way from Argentina. The seller sent it through customs as “Machined Parts”..

Sincerely,
Maverick

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