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Winchester 38-40
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Rex Holloway
WACA Guest
April 24, 2023 - 4:16 pm
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I am trying to find out more about my grandfathers Winchester 38-40, serial number 3364778   I cannot verify the model or year it was manufactured, but it has an engraving “Kings Improvement -Patented March 29, 1866.  October 16, 1860”

I saw an article that said the 38-40 shell started production in 1874, but I see 38-40’s as far back as 1866…  I’m confused.  

Any thoughts on how I can verify the make / year of this Winchester?

Kingston, WA
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April 15, 2005
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April 24, 2023 - 5:09 pm
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Hello Rex,

What you have is a Model 1873, and the serial number is 336477B which tells us that was manufactured in April of the year 1890.  The 38 W.C.F. (a.k.a. 38-40) cartridge was first introduced in the year 1879.  If you want all of the available details for your Model 1873, contact the Cody Firearms Museum records office and request (purchase) a factory letter. 


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