1873 Winchester Trappers Rifle

The Winchester Model 1873 Trapper’s Rifle is a lever-action repeating firearm designed by Benjamin Tyler Henry and manufactured by the Winchester Repeating Arms Company. Introduced in 1873, it quickly gained popularity for its reliability, ease of use, and firepower, earning the nickname “The Gun that Won the West.”

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1873 Winchester Trappers Rifle

The Winchester Model 1873 Trapper’s Rifle is a lever-action repeating firearm designed by Benjamin Tyler Henry and manufactured by the Winchester Repeating Arms Company. Introduced in 1873, it quickly gained popularity for its reliability, ease of use, and firepower, earning the nickname “The Gun that Won the West.”

Design and Features:

  • Lever Action Mechanism: The rifle features a distinctive lever-action mechanism, operated by moving a lever located beneath the receiver. This action ejects the spent cartridge, loads a fresh round from the magazine, and cocks the hammer, allowing for rapid firing compared to single-shot firearms.
  • Tubular Magazine: The rifle is fed by a tubular magazine located beneath the barrel. This magazine can hold multiple cartridges, further increasing the firearm’s rate of fire.
  • Caliber Options: Originally chambered in a variety of calibers including .44-40 Winchester, .38-40 Winchester, and .32-20 Winchester, the Model 1873 offered versatility for hunting and self-defense.
  • Barrel Length: The Trapper’s Rifle variant typically features a shorter barrel than standard models, making it lighter and more maneuverable for horseback riding and use in dense brush.
  • Materials: The rifle is primarily constructed of steel, with a wooden stock and forend. Some models may have additional brass or nickel-plated components.
  • Sights: The rifle is equipped with iron sights, typically consisting of a front blade sight and a rear folding leaf sight adjustable for elevation.

Historical Significance

The Winchester Model 1873 played a significant role in the westward expansion of the United States, becoming popular among settlers, cowboys, and lawmen. Its reputation for reliability and effectiveness solidified its place in American history and popular culture.

Year

1873

Era

19th Century

Brand

Winchester

Country

USA

Military Grouping

Army

Theatre

Civil War