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Antique Single Shot Rifles

Single-shot muskets were the first widespread firearm in use by military forces and hunters worldwide. These early firearms later gained rifling in the barrel and became known as rifles. Single-shot rifles were used by military forces during the matchlock and flintlock eras, then percussion, and later, metallic cartridges. Antique single shots were very simple, and this simplicity made them reliable with a long service life.

Even after the repeating rifle became more popular and widespread, antique single-shot rifles were kept in service. They were often utilized by hunters for big game in Africa, the western United States, and the northern frontier. As smaller, faster-caliber cartridges became more and more popular, companies still produced single-shot rifles for their simplicity and low price.

Single-shot rifles often fed families during the Great Depression and they are still treasured today. Many antique single-shot rifles are still capable of being fired due to their simplicity and the craftsmanship that went into building them.


Quick Facts

  • The Springfield 1873 single-shot rifle in .45-70 served the U.S. military until 1892 when it was replaced by Krag-Jorgensen rifle
  • The single-shot rifle is a simple weapon, but there are six different action types for single-shot rifles
  • The Model 1885 single-shot rifle has been chambered in more calibers than any rifle in history and is still produced

Recommended Items at Auction

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WERDER, GERMANY A SCARCE 11.5mm (WERDER) SINGLE-SHOT PISTOL, MODEL '1869 WERDER', serial no. 525,
Dec 13, 10:00 AM GMT
WERDER, GERMANY A SCARCE 11.5mm (WERDER) SINGLE-SHOT PISTOL, MODEL '1869 WERDER', serial no. 525,
by Holts Auctioneers
Est: £1,000- £2,000
£1,0000 Bids
G.E. LEWIS, BIRMINGHAM A .360 (No.5) SINGLE-SHOT HAMMER ROOK & RABBIT RIFLE, serial no. 14084,
Dec 13, 10:00 AM GMT
G.E. LEWIS, BIRMINGHAM A .360 (No.5) SINGLE-SHOT HAMMER ROOK & RABBIT RIFLE, serial no. 14084,
by Holts Auctioneers
Est: £400- £600
£4000 Bids
MORTIMER & SON, EDINBURGH A .297/300 (ROOK) SINGLE-SHOT ROOK & RABBIT-RIFLE, no visible serial number,
Dec 13, 10:00 AM GMT
MORTIMER & SON, EDINBURGH A .297/300 (ROOK) SINGLE-SHOT ROOK & RABBIT-RIFLE, no visible serial number,
by Holts Auctioneers
Est: £500- £700
£5000 Bids
A .440 (REV) SINGLE-SHOT ROOK & RABBIT-RIFLE, UNSIGNED, serial no. 748,
Dec 13, 10:00 AM GMT
A .440 (REV) SINGLE-SHOT ROOK & RABBIT-RIFLE, UNSIGNED, serial no. 748,
by Holts Auctioneers
Est: £300- £500
£3000 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Antique Single Shot Rifles


Holts Auctioneers

Holts Auctioneers