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A Sharps For The Best Shot

A Sharps For The Best Shot

Photo credit: Michael Ives

The National Firearms Museum collection is well known for historic pieces, but sometimes you encounter a unique gun that steps to the front of the line. On Nov. 2, 1858, a lucky man named William Caughy received this engraved Sharps Model 1853 Sporting Rifle for being the best shot. But it wasn’t just any shooting match—Caughy was presented this .44 Sharps at the first-annual Target Excursion of the Sharps Rifle Guard, the elite marksmen who watched over the Sharps factory in Hartford, Conn. You could say that Mr. Caughy was the best sharpshooter that day.

On loan from a private collector, this elaborately engraved single-shot rifle is just one of the many special aspects of American history that are part of the NRA National Firearms Museum.

Interested in historic arms? Visit either of the two NRA museums—the NRA National Firearms Museum at NRA headquarters in Fairfax, Va., or our new NRA National Sporting Arms Museum at Bass Pro Shops in Springfield, Mo. Both locations include a timeline of American arms from the first colonists through modern day, with exemplary handguns, rifles and shotguns available for viewing seven days a week. Both museums are free admission (donations gratefully accepted), and offer an unforgettable visitor experience. For more details, check out the museum website at www.nramuseum.com, call (703) 267-1600 or e-mail nfmstaff@nrahq.org.