A Fine Volunteer Baker Flintlock Rifle by I. Gill. 46” overall, 30” 16 bore 7 groove twist barrel stamped with Tower private a& Ordnance proofs at breech, blade fore sight, block for bayonet on the underside of muzzle, leaf rear sights with one fixed and two hinged, the hinged leaves with V's to top & sighting holes at a lower level, flat bevelled border line engraved lock with stepped tail signed 'I. GILL' and Crown G.R. cypher to the centre, semi waterproof pan, roller to frizzen, ring neck cock, detented action, regulation brass mounted figured full walnut stock without slit for ram rod, with raised cheek rest, small brass patch box lid, the wrist escutcheon engraved 'T. W. W. V.', sling swivels & iron ramrod. With a Percy Tenantry Powder flask, Percy Tenantry Powder Horn and turn screw with pan brush.
Circa 1802, serial no. T.W.W.V.
This is a superior example. Bore very good with seven grooves making one turn in 30in. (standard Baker 1/4 in 30in.). Made to use with a socket bayonet.
Provenance: This rifle was produced for a volunteer rifle company by John Gill of Birmingham who took over the family business from his father Thomas Gill in mid-1801. A quantity of these Baker rifles were sold at Sotheby's many years back and spread over a number of sales. There were two different grades, the superior grade such as this example had fast twist rifling, detented actions and superior sights. The standard grade had normal Baker rifling, standard sight and actions, all were marked "T. W. W" and a number. Apparently a quantity had been brought into Sotheby's by a couple who had bought a large country house and found a rack of these rifles in one of the outhouses.