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A Very Rare Confederate Columbus Armory Carbine

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Carbines made by the Columbus Armory are particularly scarce, and their history is not really well understood. They were manufactured by John Gray of Columbus SC, whose brother William Gray was a partner in another (better documented) Georgia arms factory under the director of J.P. Murray. John Gray appear to have started producing guns with a contract for Alabama, most likely with the help of his brother’s company – the Murray arms are extremely similar to the Columbus Armory guns. Gray had a contract for 200 rifles and 1000 carbines, of which only 176-183 guns are documented as having been delivered (records show 176 guns delivered, but Gray was paid for 183).

Note the PRO / FCH stamp on the barrel; the is the inspection mark of Captain Humphries, commander of the CSA arsenal in Columbus. Mechanically, this is a Mississippi-style carbine with a .54 caliber 23 1/2” barrel with 3-groove rifling.

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