Signed in script “ J*H” Possibly John Hoffman, Dauphin County, PA Ca 1825
This fine rifle is closely related to the work of Jacob Roop. The patchbox finial, half-moon forestock inlays, wrist checkering, and architecture are characteristics associated with Roop. The fish inlays and wavy line terminating the forestock molding (signifying the multiple bends of the river) relate to the maker's close proximity to the Susquehanna.
7 piercings in the 4-petal flower patchbox create a pleasing design that recalls Peter Berry’s work.
The large caliber rifled barrel is 44 & 3/8 inches long and is the original length.
Light incised carving appears behind the cheekpiece as well as a large silver crescent moon, brass fish, and 3 other silver inlays. An engraved brass comb plate extends from the butt plate.
The nicely engraved flintlock is stamped “London Warranted” and is original to the rifle.
The condition of the rifle is excellent, boasting an original untouched finish, not one sliver of wood replaced or missing, all brass hardware is original and unpolished, 17 silver inlays, and 10 brass inlays. The silver fish inlay in front of the lock and a half-inch piece of the toe plate are replaced. The silver fish in front of the lock bolt plate is cracked.
This is a long, slender pleasing rifle from Dauphin County; highly and tastefully decorated with silver and brass, in remarkably original condition.