Letter prefixes before serial numbers on trade guns

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Rick Riddell 230
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Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:15 pm

Letter prefixes before serial numbers on trade guns

Post by Rick Riddell 230 » Sat Apr 13, 2019 1:38 am

I posted this over on the doublegunshop, so far no response, so thought I Iwould try here and knock off some of the cobwebs here with a little speculation and discussion on the gun trade!


Ok so who is familiar with prefix letters before serial numbers on British trade guns? Is there a listing or reference for them? This what I know of so for:


H: Holloway
JA: Joseph Ashbury
G: Graham

I have seen an "o" but not sure who that is, possibly Osborne?
Were there any others

John 39
Posts: 212
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 5:30 pm

Re: Letter prefixes before serial numbers on trade guns

Post by John 39 » Tue Apr 16, 2019 4:33 pm

Holloway & Sons and G & S Holloway used an H prefix on guns they made for others but not on guns they made and sold themselves. But not all H prefix guns were made by the Holloway firms, Charles Osborne used an H prefix but the reason is not known, his guns were definitely not Holloway guns. William Powell also used an H prefix but this was for their recent Heritage range of guns.

J A stands for Joseph Asbury (not Ashbury) and these initials can be found on several makes of gun e.g. Charles Rosson.

George Gibbs used B, C and E suffixes, B guns were made by the trade, C and E were made by Gibbs but the difference between them is not known.

I M Crudgington used A & B suffixes to denote grades. Edwinson Green used A & B suffixes possibly because of duplications of numbers.

Let's not talk about Greener and Westley Richards - every letter of the alphabet in front of the number and behind.

O will not be Osborne.

G Graham - never heard of him, probably Scottish! Not a trade maker!

Trutta
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:39 pm

Re: Letter prefixes before serial numbers on trade guns

Post by Trutta » Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:02 pm

John, thank you, this board is absolutely amazing!!

John 39
Posts: 212
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 5:30 pm

Re: Letter prefixes before serial numbers on trade guns

Post by John 39 » Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:03 am

Having had a sleepless night trying to remember what, where and when - I remembered! Then I had to find it! Which I eventually did! I will email to you "An Index of British Gun Lock Makers".

Somewhere else I have a list of makers whose initials have been found over time inside gun locks. I hope to find that, probably not before Christmas.

John 39
Posts: 212
Joined: Mon May 22, 2017 5:30 pm

Re: Letter prefixes before serial numbers on trade guns

Post by John 39 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 12:29 pm

I have found some notes on initials and trade marks which might be useful to members:

A & T Adams & Tait
H W Harry Wheeler (London barrel filer 1930-1940)
J A (on action) Joseph Asbury or John Aston (1818-1822)
G L George Lane (1930-1940)
C A (on barrels) Charles Allport

Wheatsheaf logo Joseph Whitworth

Image of an elephant head & trunk Greener

N, M and S prefixes to 3 digit serial numbers Westley Richards war work

Image of a target (bull, inner and outer) Ward & Sons (Central Gun Works)

L & S Leonard & Sons
H S and F S Henry and Frank Squires (John Robertson)

Image of a Hammer Henry Parsons (patentee of chopper lumps)

C L Charles Lancaster (barrel makers to James Purdey)
W F William Fullerd (barrel makers to James Purdey)
T E Thomas Evans (barrel makers to James Purdey)
T P Thomas Parkin (barrel makers to James Purdey and Thomas Boss)
I B Joseph Brazier
J G J Grainger
J P John Portlock
C A Christopher Aston
T S Thomas Smith

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