Daniel Myron Lefever was one of the geniuses of American gunmaking. Judging by the number of partnerships and businesses he formed in his career, he must have been mercurial, too.
From 1857 to his death in 1906, he worked for himself, and with others. By himself and with others, he built all sorts of firearms–including the one you see here. It comes from DM’s final venture: The D. M. Lefever, Sons & Company, which he formed with his sons in 1902.
Morphy Auctions is auctioning of this double tomorrow. If you like it, get on it now.
D.M. Lefever & Sons Grade 8E SxS Shotgun (12 Bore): This early high quality Lefever was built using a scalloped boxlock, Greener crossbolt. Barrels were made of Krupp fluid steel, not Damascus, and features a solid matted rib with twin beads. Double triggers, beautiful dark grain hand checkered English type rear sight with Monte Carlo comb, finely checkered side panels, owner’s plaque in stock, and an early Upland Game red waffle recoil pad. Stamped on bottom of frame “D.M. Lefever Sons & Company Pat’d 1902 Not connected with Lefever Arms Company”.
Bores are clean and shiny. Barrels retain approximately 70% original blue starting to thin and patina, with age freckling on the right barrel extending 10″ from breech. Forearm is finely checkered with ebony tip. The frame exhibits delicate scroll engraving with setter on right side and mallard on left. The wood is in beautiful condition, has been freshened up at one time, with a couple minor dings. Lock-up is perfect with no wiggle with forearm off. Trigger guard is basically gun metal grey. Nice traces of case colors on both sides of frame. Lovely old high grade Lefever.
Serial Number: 1331
Barrel Length: 30″
Length Of Pull: 15″
Drop at Comb: 1-3/4″
Drop at Heel: 2″
Internal Bore Diameters: .744″
Barrel Wall Thickness: Left – .045″, Right – .055″
Chokes: Both Barrels – Modified
Weight8 lbs. – 2 oz.
Daniel Myron Lefever was one of America’s most inventive gunmakers. Born in upstate New York in 1835, he was apprenticed to a gunmaker in 1848 and opened his first gunshop in 1857. Over the next two decades, he formed partnerships with a number men — Ellis, Dangerfield, Barber & Nichols — and built a wide range of muzzle- and breech-loading firearms.
In 1878, DM created his first successful model of a hammerless side-by-side shotgun and a year later he struck out on his own to build it. This model would be tweaked and refined until around 1884 when it was replaced by the Lefever Arms Co. shotgun most people think of as the “True Lefever”.
In 1901, DM left Lefever Arms Co and started DM Lefever & Sons in Syracuse, NY. This company built D.M. Lefever’s new “Cross-Bolt” shotguns. The 12 gauge 7D you see here is one of those doubles.
Cross-Bolt Lefevers are sort of “True Lefever” hybrids. They use a similar hook to cock the locks. And like True Lefevers, they also use a grooved rib extension to lock to down the barrels. To this rib extension, DM added a Greener-style cross bolt. He then modified the internal lockwork so that it’s somewhat similar to an Anson & Deeley-style boxlock and did away with the sideplates see on his earlier designs.
These guns were made by Daniel Myron Lefever after he left the Lefever Arms Co. I think they were made from about 1901-1905. I’ve seen a couple of them and they are unique guns. This is the only 16g I’ve come across.
Daniel Myron Lefever was one of the geniuses of American gunmaking. Born in 1835, he started making firearms under his own name in 1857. Fifteen years later he was working with machinist Francis Dangerfield. Together they patented a doll’s head, thumb lift locking mechanism for breechloading shotguns.
In 1883, Lefever used part of this design on his new barrel-cocking hammerless shotgun, the first of its kind created in the US. The 16 gauge Lefever Arms Co. E grade you see here is built on those two patents. Made around 1886, it’s one of the first sixteens that the Lefever Arms Co. produced. From what I can see, it looks like it’s in pretty original condition. The only issue I can see with it is with the bbls: They’re short (26″) and possibly cut. Other than that, this125+ years old side-by-side looks like it in excellent shape.
HOLLAND & HOLLAND DOUBLE HAMMER RIFLE .500 3 1/4″: 27″ steel barrels, ramp front sight with folding night sight. Two leaf rear express sight. Lightly engraved back action locks and rebounding hammers. Stock dimensions LOP: 14 1/2″ Comb: 1 1/2″ Heel: 2 1/4″ Weight: 9lbs 2oz. Super untouched original barrel blue. The action and locks are lightly engraved and retain areas of casehardening with the remainder fading to a pleasing mottled gray. Mint bores and tight action. Beautiful wood and checkering. Left side of the receiver engraved “CHARGE 5 DRAMS, CASE 3 1/4 INCHES”. Price: 12,500
1916 Ansley H. Fox XE Grade 12ga: Serial # 23670, Made in 1916, Philadelphia, PA. This gun is in +95% Condition. Hand Engraving. This gun is a fine piece of American craftsmanship. This gun has been shot very little. 2 5/8” chambers, 28” bbls, Full & Mod, Chromox steel, #4 weight, 13 ¾” X 1 5/8” x 2 ¾”, 6lbs 13oz. Price: $11,995.00
CHURCHILL REGAL XXV ORIGINAL CASE: 12g Boxlock Ejectors: Nice original cased Churchill XXV Regal. 25” bbls. This Churchill is in very good condition and with a 59xx serial number is an early 30’s gun. Nice dimensions on a straight grip DAC 1 ½ X DAH 2 ¼ X LOP 14 to end of pad, with a 5/8 cast off for a right handed shooter. 6lbs. Priced to sell $3975.00.
DM LEFEVER #7 GRADE 16 GAUGE: 28″ MOD AND FULL 2 3/4 SINGLE SELECT TRIIGGER EJECTORS SPLINTER FOREARM PISTOL GRIP EXCELLENT CONDITION THE WOOD IS PROFESSIONALLY REFINISHED 6LB 6 OZ X 2 1/2 X 1 3/4 X 13 FROM REAR SINGLE TRIGGER. Price: $7,500.00
Darne Halifax 16 Gauge: Retains most of the case color on the action with blue in similar condition. 25 ½” bbls, 2 ½” chambers, double triggers, straight stock, 14 1/8″ LOP. 1 3/4″ DAC. 2 5/8″ DAH. 1/4″ cast on (for left-handed shooter), Price: $1,499.99