Cherry & Walnut Rifle Case - 1841 Wesson Civil War Sniper Rifle

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Project by Eric M. Saperstein posted 04-02-2012 02:55 AM 12859 views 2 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I was just digging through our archives of photos – I should just take some better ones of a piece like this – but I found some pictures of this rifle case I never posted. There’s hundreds of projects we completed over the years and I wish the earlier ones had been properly photographed. All I can do now is keep up with the high resolution digital images and the photo shoot stunts so we can preserve our portfolio for future generations!

This is a solid cherry / walnut rifle case designed to reproduce a simple case made for Civil War era sniper rifles. this 1841 Wesson is one of the originals in my father’s collection (Stan Saperstein). He portrays Wyman White, a USSS and uses the rifle, case, and accoutrements to provide in character interactive presentations.

The rifle is a 40 caliber that takes a 41 caliber bullet pounded into the muzzle to ensure a tight lock. 120 grains (we’ve only fired it with 60) is a full charge. There are kills recorded at a mile with this style rifle … who knows maybe THIS rifle.

Stan wrote a book entitled “Sharpshooters” – featuring a cast of characters going through the story of how the USSS was formed and maneuvered through the war.

-- Eric M. Saperstein, Master Craftsman

8 comments so far

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 3476 days

#1 posted 04-02-2012 03:42 AM

Nice looking case. It looks as original as the rifle. Great job.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View HawkDriver's profile


447 posts in 2872 days

#2 posted 04-02-2012 06:29 AM

Beautiful case, beautiful rifle. I love projects like these that have a back story. Kudos to your dad for preserving our history with reenactments and the book.

-- Patrick, Helicopters don't fly. They beat the air into submission.

View jaykaypur's profile


4017 posts in 2647 days

#3 posted 04-02-2012 10:49 AM

Very nice gun and case. You did a great job.

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18423 posts in 3914 days

#4 posted 04-03-2012 06:14 AM

Nice work. Is the scope original too? I have done a bit of 1,000 yard shooting with BP rifles. Shot on the US team in Ottawa in ‘93. Making a hit at a mile with a muzzle loader like that would take a lot of skill compounded by a lot more luck ;-) I had a DB Wesson rifle very similar to that, but the bore was shot out in the breach area. I traded for a Remington of the same vintage ;-)

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Knothead62's profile


2600 posts in 3200 days

#5 posted 04-10-2012 08:32 PM

Great looking case! I hope that rifle is locked up tight. That would be worth a forutne, I would think. I wonder what happened to the hundreds/thousands of rifles that were use in the war from 1861-1865.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18423 posts in 3914 days

#6 posted 04-10-2012 10:57 PM

Many of them were destroyed by the north. Lots of them were converted to cartridge rifles for military use. In those days, things were worn out and the material salvaged for other purposes.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

21967 posts in 3344 days

#7 posted 04-16-2012 12:59 PM

Beautiful case and fine rifle to put in there. Great project for your dad’s rifle!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Eric M. Saperstein's profile

Eric M. Saperstein

766 posts in 3486 days

#8 posted 04-17-2012 01:25 AM

Scope is a repro, the rifle is all original.

I’ve never shot past about 600 yards on the DCM range only once. Hit a few things but didn’t have much time really to practice. Up to 300 I’m fine.

The rifling is in good shape on this one, we know where two others are. I’m not sure what the value is on it, we should probably check that out one of these days. He also has an assortment of reproductions including a swivel barrel rifle / pistol … reproductions of Tim Murphy’s guns. I should post some photos of those one of the days.

Thanks for the feedback!

-- Eric M. Saperstein, Master Craftsman

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