I have just acquired a Marlin lever action, chambered in .32-20.
Could someone please assist me, in determining the year of manufacture of this rifle? It has a 5 character serial number that starts with an 'A' followed by 4 digits (i.e. A20xx). The barrel is octagon shaped; 24" in length; & with an equivalent length tubular magazine.
Marked on the tang is:
On the top of the barrel, immediately in front of the receiver, is marked:
Again, on the top of the barrel - immediately in front of the rear sight, is marked:
* MARLIN FIRE-ARMS CO. NEW-HAVEN: CT U.S.A.
PATENTED OCT. 11. 1887. APRIL 2. 1889. AUGUST 1. 1893. *
On the under-side of the action, immediately before the fore-wood grip, is where the serial number is stamped:
I would greatly appreciate any assistance with this query.
Thank you in advance.
The Marlin records end after 1906 at around 355,300 Marlin continued with the original
set of numbers to around 450,000 but in what year I am not so sure,it is thought to be
the end of 1915 when the Marlin family sold out to investors.Either the original Marlin
Co. or the new owners started a new set of serial numbers with the pre-fix added to
the number. A,B,C and D seem to be all that have shown up.This would seem to make
one think some where around near the end of the Marlin family ownership or the start
of the Marlin Arms or Marlin-Rockwell ownership.It would be hard to guess an exact year.
We can narrow the date range down if your rifle has a "bullseye", in the stock and/or an inspectors "star", on the top tang.
I have scoured the stock again (under a bright light) but can not see any 'bullseye' markings. Is there a particular location I could scrutinise further & what size would the mark be? Just I case I have missed it. There is no inspection 'star' mark on the tang.
I really didn't think you would find a star or the Bulls-Eye on this gun as
they didn't seem to appear till after the New Marlin Firearms Corporation
took over around 1921 or so.
stock rubbed before Tru-oil 002.jpg
The Bullseye is the black and white circle found in the butt stock as seen in the pic. Mr fixit
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There is definitely no 'bullseye' on the stock, nor is there a 'star' inspection mark on the tang.
The 'bullseye' is certainly more obvious than some inspection/manufacture marks I have tried to decipher on some Lee-Enfields.
Do these details assist to narrow down a possible year of manufacture?
I had one with both the star and bullseye. It was a "D" prefix.
I have a few rifles with the D pre-fix in the 8000 number range recorded that
have the Star and or the Bulls-Eye. This makes one think that the D pre-fix
was used last by the Marlin-Rockwell Corporation.With the start up of The
Marlin Firearms Corporation around 1921 it is quite possible that there
were still a fair amount of parts still on hand to assemble into rifles. The Bulls-
Eye was registered in 1923 so it is possible that it was used earlier.The star
seemed to show up about the say time frame.