P. O. Box 2791
Rockford, IL 61132 US
Phone (815) 968-1995
Fax (815) 968-1996
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Single Shot/Antique Repeater Stocks
Stocks and Components
Allen Box Lock
English Rigby Sporting
English Shot Gun
Early Fullstock Fowler
Harpers Ferry Model 1803
Northwest or "Trade Gun"
Tulle "Fusil de Chasse"
Underhammer - H & A
Underhammer - Allen
Jim Chambers Locks
L & R Locks
R. E. Davis Locks
Allen Box Lock & Inline Actions
L & R Triggers
R. E. Davis Triggers
The patchbox is not a regular characteristic although surviving Hawken
with patchboxes have been found and some of these patchboxes were
engraved. The rear sights were generally a slanting buckhorn type and
the front was a silver blade. The rifles utilized a patent breech and
.50 or .54 calibre seemed about standard. The stock was sturdy and some
of the models favored extra wood where the forestock would rest on the
pommel of a saddle.
Hawkens built between 1830 and 1840 were often stocked with walnut. In the next decade there was a move to more decorated rifles and this continued until after Jake Hawken's death in 1849. After that the surviving brother, Samuel, seemed to return to building a generally simpler and less decorative rifle.
Most of the Hawkens probably weighted about 10 or 11 pounds but there are some authentic 15 pounders around and some that weigh less than 10. If you have ever held an original Hawken you will appreciate the feel and "fit" of the rifle to the shoulder. Sighting is fast and tests show these rifles were very accurate. These are distinct advantages for the man whose survival often depended on getting off a good fast shot.
Generally the Hawken rifle seems rounded. Its curves flow and its lines are not harsh. (An excellent exhibit of these rifles can be found at the Buffalo Bill Museum in Cody, Wyoming). The wrist is usually egg-shaped, and in the early models, the stocks seem to be slightly arched in the comb with the hint of a Roman nose. In later models the top line of the comb seems to have been straightened.
The Hawken is another American firearm rich in tradition. If you intend to own or build one, you owe it to yourself and to your heritage to take the time to find our more about this unique rifle.
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