Rare Bavarian Model 1842 Sighted Socket Bayonet for New Jersey Altered M1841 Mississippi Rifles
- Product Code: EWB-TB308-SOLD
- Availability: Out Of Stock
This is a very scarce sighted socket bayonet from the American Civil War era. For years the bayonet has been best known as the socket bayonet used on New Jersey altered Model 1841 Mississippi Rifles that had their barrels turned down to accept a socket bayonet but did not have new front sights installed on the barrels of the rifles. These unique bayonets had a front sight dovetailed into the socket of the bayonet in such a way as to be aligned for use when the bayonet was correctly mounted on the rifle. This pattern of bayonet appears as Figure B83B in Robert Reilly’s American Socket Bayonets & Scabbards. Reilly notes in his short description of the bayonet that there is a strong similarity between this Mississippi Rifle bayonet and the bayonet used on the Model 1842 Bayerischen (Bavarian) Musket. In fact, recent research has confirmed that this same bayonet is the appropriate bayonet for the Belgian manufactured Bavarian Model 1842 muskets that were imported in very limited quantities for US use during the American Civil War. It had always been assumed that the bayonets used on the New Jersey altered Model 1841 Mississippi Rifles had been imported as well, because they did not conform to any pattern in current use in the United States. It makes perfect sense that the rifles were altered to accept an available import bayonet. These bayonets are extremely scarce, and even Reilly notes that they are very rarely encountered. It is unlikely that more than a few hundred were ever imported and based upon the scarcity of extant examples, the survival rate appears to be very low.
The bayonet measures 23 ¼” in overall length, with a blade that is approximately 20 ½” long with an 18 ½” fuller that has a nearly flat stop about 1 ¾” from the neck, rather than the more rounded fuller stop associated with most American-made bayonets. The bayonet’s socket is 2 5/8” in length with a nominally 1” muzzle-to-stud distance and a bore (muzzle) diameter that measures .848”. The bayonet is unmarked other than a small B stamped on the face of the blade near the junction with the shank and with four file slash workman’s marks on the rear edge of the socket. The dovetailed sight is .55” wide, .35” deep and about .3” tall.
The bayonet is in FINE overall condition and has a pleasing dove gray patina over all of the metal surfaces, with scattered oxidized freckling and surface discoloration. The metal is almost entirely smooth throughout, with only some very lightly scattered peppering and minor pinpricking distributed in small areas on the bayonet, which are somewhat more prominent on the socket. The original locking ring and tension screw are present on the socket and both function exactly as they should. The original dovetailed fronts sight blade is present on the socket as well, roughly 1/8” from the front edge of the socket.
Overall, this is a really very nice, complete example of a very scarce Sighted Socket Bayonet of the Bavarian M1842 pattern for use on that musket or the rare New Jersey alteration of the US Model 1841 Mississippi Rifle. If you have one of these scarce New Jersey altered Mississippi Rifle with a turned down barrel and no front sight, or a Bavarian M1842 musket, you really need this bayonet to complete your display. I have been actively looking for one of these bayonets for about for some twenty years, and this is only the fourth example I have ever had the opportunity to purchase, so don’t miss your chance to add it to your collection.