American Blunderbus



American Blunderbus


This American naval blunderbuss is a crude amalgamation of brass and iron components to assemble a working firearm. The walnut stock appears to be the remains of a one-time swivel gun, evidence by a side hole once used for supporting a “Y” yoke to turn a swivel gun. The lock is an early 18th century Queen Anne pattern lock found on English muskets from the 1715 era. The brass trigger guard and side plate are also taken from an earlier English firearm. Two crude iron straps nailed to the stock retain the typical flared “trumpet mouthed” barrel found on a blunderbuss. Worn British markings appear near the breach of the barrel - making the barrel an earlier English barrel. The overall crude construction of this blunderbuss is typical of the makeshift weapons assembled early in the war. The barrel flares to a diameter of 4.1 cm at the muzzle.

Caliber: 1 5/8" bore
Weight: 10.0 lbs
Length: 39 1/4"
Barrel: 23 1/4"


Brown, M.L. Firearms in Colonial America: The Impact on History and Technology 1492-1792. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1980.


c. 1750-1780


George C. Neumann Collection, Valley Forge National Historical Park


VAFO 177

Original Format