Here's an excellent example of one of the Civil War's most unique muskets. The rifled muskets built by the firm PS Justice of Philadelphia were assembled using surplus and condemned parts from other arsenals in combination with new components made by the firm. The resulting muskets were of a completely new and unique pattern with distinct civilian-style pointed lock panels and brass trigger guard.
Justice built his muskets inexpensively in order to maximize his profit. These muskets were so hastily and cheaply assembled that they were quickly given a reputation of being of extremely poor quality and even dangerous. One officer noted that the stocks were made of improperly cured wood which allowed for shrinkage and caused the stock to crack and the barrel bands to slide off. He also noted that the sights were useless and appeared to be soldered to the barrels with a fake screw head inserted into their bases in order to provide the illusion of a dovetailed and screwed sight. The bayonets provided with the muskets were "as soft as lead" and many bent and broke during bayonet practice drills.
This particular musket is in outstanding shape with a dark brown patina adorning all the steel parts and crisp, legible stamps on both the barrel and lock. This particular musket is an excellent example of Justice's cost saving practice of using "recycled" parts from other arsenals; as the tail of the lock still bears the remnant of its original "Springfield" stamp that was polished off and re-purposed by Justice for use in his musket. The lock holds flawlessly on both full and half cock and the stamps are all crisp and legible with no pitting or other damage.
The stock is in excellent condition with no burn out, cracks, or rotten spots, with the exception of a small fracture in the lock mortise behind the hammer. The crack seems to be primarily cosmetic however and the lock mortise is still very sound. The original finish is intact on the stock and all the edges are crisp and unsanded.
The barrel is good with an even patina and a good markings. The barrel was shortened about 2 inches at some point the gun's life.
The brass hardware is in excellent condition. The middle barrel band is missing, as is the ramrod.