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Winchester Hotchkiss 45-70 Model 1879 US Navy Rifle
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November 27, 2023 - 4:27 pm
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Here for your viewing pleasure is my Winchester Hotchkiss 45-70 Model 1879 U.S. Navy rifle serial number 2926., 32″” round barrel with Naval acceptance proofs visible (WWK Lt W.W.. Kimball on chamber, the initials “”R.T”” are carved onto the right side of the butt-stock. Left side has “”257 042″” stamped just below receiver address.. The Winchester Hotchkiss is a smooth-working arm holding five rounds in a tubular magazine within the butt plus one in the chamber. First models are identified by the giant rotating mag cutoff/safety on the right side under the bolt. These rifles remained in service until 1895 when they were superseded by the Winchester-Lee Model 1895 6mm US Navy rifle.

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January 7, 2024 - 4:51 pm
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Here’s  the Cody Firearms Museum shipment letter and thanks to Richard2 on War Relics forum got the US Navy recipient for this rifle. The recipient of the Winchester-Hotchkiss serial number 2926 was the New York Navy Yard, received on January 7, 1880. This is from the book Springfield Research Service Serial Numbers of U.S. Martial Arms, Volume 3, page 188.

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January 7, 2024 - 6:07 pm
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Cool gun.  I have never seen one that was shipped to the Navy.  Did they say how many were in this shipment? 

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January 8, 2024 - 4:02 pm
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No; didn’t mention how many rifles were in the shipment. I got a list of ships which were at the Brooklyn Navy Yard in 1880 and hope to track down which ship received this rifle.

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January 8, 2024 - 6:05 pm
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When guns were shipped to the Navy Yard they then could have gone to anywhere in the world where the Navy/Marines were.  Not just the ships in the port.  The Army had a yard in the same area too.  This was usually the port that supplied the east coast and even Europe.  I have a Colt pistol that went from Colt to the Army ship yard and then on to France during WWI.  The Colt Letter states all of this.

Good luck with your search.  After the Spanish American war an inventory of the Lee Navy’s on the ships was taken. Unfortunately my rifle is not on this list.

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