Morphy offers remarkable Springfield 1903 Bolt Action Rifle

DENVER, Pa. — Morphy Auctions will offer at world-class rifle at it upcoming firearms sales event to be held on April 9-10. All 1,400+ lots from this sale will be on display in Morphy’s Denver auction gallery and available for preview on March 1.

1903 Springfield

This all-original weapon retains its earliest .30-03 specifications and is an elite example of the rarest of all 20th century firearms manufactured in the United States.

This Springfield Model 1903 Riflewas manufactured in 1905, the third year of production. Besides its outstanding condition and all matching parts, the gun’s earliest proportions and detailing make it truly extraordinary. The vast majority of Model 1903 guns made in 1905 had a .30-06 cartridge. However, this example made in 1905 retains its early and all original .30-03 components. 1905 was an important milestone in the design evolution of the Model 1903. That year, Springfield updated its rod bayonet Model 1903 to accept a new knife bayonet. In addition, the government realized that the new Spitzer bullets used in Germany had a distinct advantage over the round nose bullets of the .30-03. As a result, Springfield re-engineered its Model 1903 to the new .30-06 cartridge. Given these changes, only a tiny handful of the old style Model 1903 rifles left the factory before being converted to .30-06 specifications, which included shortening the stock and barrel .20″ and changing the rear sight. Incredibly, this 1905 Springfield 1903, on offer at Morphy’s, is one of these early rarities.

1903 Springfield Detail 1

This Model 1903 has an interesting history. The rife was discovered in an attic in Boonton, N.J., where it had been hidden away for over four decades. The family contacted Morphy’s to see if it would be a good fit for auction, as they had no idea of its value, rarity, or historical importance. Morphy’s specialists felt there was something special about this old rifle the moment they laid eyes on it. Morphy’s took in the rifle and gave it a basic and necessary cleaning. It was then that our team realized that it had all the earmarks of a once-in-a-lifetime find. It was taken to the Bethesda, Md. office of Springfield Research. There, Wayne Gagner, one of the world’s leading authorities on Springfield Firearms, disassembled the rifle and did an exhaustive review of every component. This research uncovered, as well as confirmed, the value and history of this remarkable find. This Model 1903 comes with a letter from Gagner summarizing his findings.

1903 Springfield Detail 2 1903_Springfield Trigger
According to Dave Bushing, Morphy’s Firearms Division Expert, “This is the only early and all original Model 1903 of this type to come to auction in memory.  It is highly unlikely that another example in this condition exists anywhere in the world outside of the Rock Island Arsenal Museum.  Morphy’s really went the extra mile in authenticating, cleaning, and preparing this example for auction. To have the pleasure of offering this item is thrilling, but the phone call to the lucky family to inform them of their good fortune was the real reward. It is the stuff dreams are really made of.”

About Morphy Auctions

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Morphy Auctions is located at 2000 North Reading Road, Denver, PA 17517.   They can be reached by phone at 717-335-3435, by fax at 717-336-7115, and by email at info@morphyauctions.com.  Morphy Auctions is open seven days a week from 9am to 4pm.  For more information on Morphy’s, please visit www.MorphyAuctions.com.

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