Going through my now departed Grandpa's gun collection (mainly family heirlooms) and ran across one that he didn't have much information written down on. It's serial number 32891, and is apparently grade "G" according to the letter stamped under where the barrels mate up.
Thumb break, hammerless, appear to be Damascus barrels.
The same number is etched in on the trigger guard, and I assume this is not factory. Done nicely, but I know that doesn't matter.
Sideplates say "LEFEVER ARMS CO.," Sideplates are color case hardened.
Tang mounted safety, and the only other stamping on it are the patent numbers. "1872, 78, 80, 85, 86, 87"
Checkered stock, checkered fore end (beavertail?)
Here's where it gets a bit confusing to me. The fore end, on the underside, has a black plastic medallion inlaid, of a dogs head. This black plastic matches the shoulder pad on the butt, but the buttpad says "ITHACA GUN CORP" around a flying bird. (pheasant or somesuch)
I know (from doing my research here
) that Ithaca bought Lefever, but the patent dates on the gun tend to point to it being an actual Lefever, compared to the later patent dates I've seen posted for Ithaca guns. I assume that Ithaca kept the lines pretty similar, so I'd expect Ithaca pieces to somewhat interchange.
All the family heirloom guns saw hard service, and most show multiple signs of repair from so many years of use. I wouldn't be surprised if the stocks on this gun were changed. Not interested in history and value for anything other than curiosity sake. Anyone able to tell me if my theory about new parts on an old gun is correct?