Anti-Poacher Blunderbuss

May 20, 2013

You don’t come across these every day! Here we have a 12-bore, flintlock, Blunderbuss, circa 1830.

I was very pleased to find the game keepers in England had quit using them before I went out poaching pheasants in the woods at night, now that was fun! I used to pick the darkest stormy nights and accompanied by the most intelligent and faithful dog a man could ever hope to own I would “snipe” roosting birds out of the huge old oak trees with a silenced .22 rifle, but I digress.

These flintlock Blunderbuss were typically assembled by local blacksmiths, and this one features a 12 inch barrel, flared muzzle, military style plain curved and radiused lock. The whole encased in a squared oak body with two wide barrel bands, and provision for a sliding waterproof cover. The flat iron trigger is connected to a rod with rings for the tripwires and this is all mounted on an iron swivel mount.

Typically the game keepers would bore a hole in a tree stump and mount the gun on the stump. Trip wires (normally two or three) were laid out and when an unsuspecting poacher pulled the trip wire it would spin the gun in his direction and fire! Game keepers could load the gun with anything they wanted to, rock salt, rusty nails or buck shot. If this old girl could talk I wonder what strange happenings in the woods at night she could recount, did this old Blunderbuss really pepper a few butts with rusty horse shoe nails in the dead of night???

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