Hello guys, I have been prowling this site for quite awhile and just joined. This matchlock came into the show this Saturday covered in grime but still in overall great condition. It looks to be almost 80 caliber by gauge,,,,a penny fits just about right in bore, has a stamp that a friend idenified as being used between 1871 and 1873, Also there is a red laquer rack number on bottom of stock. Used som sword polish cream and the silver dragon and mon just jumped out without disturbing patina of barrel.
Can someone assist in dating this firearm, and is it worth effort to remove it from stock to see if signed? Only one peg present securing stock to barrel. The "hammer" doesnt lock back and the trigger moves but cant see how it functions unless it pulls a pin in from inside edge of hammer, releasing it. There is a hole on the outside that seems to make sense as a safety or where the trigger pin would go through and hold hammer back. All help appreciated!