High-grade Lefevers are special shotguns. The Bs, As, AAs, Optimus-grades and Thousand-Dollar Grades guns made by Uncle Dan’s company are some of the finest side-by-sides ever made in America. The Lefever you see here is a 20 gauge BE – one of just six B-grade 20 gauge Lefevers known – and an excellent example of just how nice these upper-grade doubles could be.
B-grade Lefevers were expensive shotguns. In 1883, Lefever listed it for $200, and it continued to cost that until at least 1913. It’s estimated that Lefever built around a thousand B grades, and each one was a custom made shotguns. According to the book “Uncle Dan. Master Gunmaker” by Robert Elliott, Lefever’s 1904-1905 catalog stated the following about them:
“B” GRADE – $200. Fitted with Automatic Shell Ejector – $215. This is one of our best guns and a popular one with sportsman. We furnish it with English Damascus or Krupp Steel barrels, either being of superior style and of great strength. We fit this gun with a handsome English walnut stock; straight grip, one-half pistol or full pistol grip, horn cap; gold-plated triggers and indicators; horn butt plate. It has the Lefever full compensating action. The engraving is an appropriate hunting scene, as shown on lock=plate, elegantly executed. Richly checkered and finished; ten, twelve, sixteen, and twenty gauge.”