Auction items 

Morphy’s to auction the Bill Myers collection of historic antique firearms, edged weapons and the First Army on September 29


Particularly fine and historic inlaid pipe tomahawk circa 1780 that belonged to Sir Alexander Mackenzie (1764-1820), the first European to reach the Pacific Ocean. Estimate: $ 150,000 to $ 500,000

Thin and intricately carved 42 inch antique Kentucky flintlock rifle attributed to John Rupp I, Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania. Kentucky Rifle Assn. silver hang tag for “BEST SCULPTED INCISED RIFLE 1979”. Caliber / bore: .52 FFL rifled. Estimate of $ 75,000 to $ 150,000

Pair of beautiful Kentucky flintlock pistols from Lehigh County, Pa., With octagonal barrels, muzzle faces decorated with perforation dots. Caliber / bore (both): .38 smooth bore FFL. Featured in ‘Accouterments IV’ by James R Johnston. Estimate $ 30,000 to $ 50,000

Featured: Kentucky rifles, flintlock pistols, mounted silver knives, historic pipe tomahawk from Explorer Alexander Mackenzie, beautifully engraved powder horns

Some of the most remarkable edged weapons ever seen in our gallery can be found in the Bill Myers Collection. “

– Dan Morphy, Founder and President of Morphy Auctions

DENVER, PENNSYLVANIA, USA, September 26, 2021 / – On Wednesday, September 29, Morphy’s will auction Bill Myers’ revered collection of antique firearms, bladed weapons and antique weapons. The store’s auction of 163 lots is devoted exclusively to Myers’ holdings, which have been carefully acquired and scrupulously researched for decades.

“Bill Myers knew from his childhood that he would be a collector. At the age of ten he was given a Civil War sword, musket, and screw-tipped powder horn. There was an immediate connection that developed into a lifelong fascination with antique firearms, ”said Dan Morphy, Founder and President of Morphy Auctions.

After graduating from college in structural engineering and serving in the military, Myers focused on items from the 1750-1850 period, when everything was painstakingly handcrafted. Its acclaimed collection has grown to include the finest examples of Kentucky rifles, Bowie knives, engraved powder horns, and Indian tomahawks.

“David Geiger, our expert who cataloged the collection, was amazed by the rarity and incredible quality of the whole. Bill is well respected by his peers in the antique firearms hobby, and we are honored to present his incredible collection at auction, ”said Morphy.

There are 31 antique rifles in the Myers collection, including several percussion and lever models, and 20 coveted flintlock types. Of the latter specialty, the upper entrance is a slim, intricately carved 42-inch example attributed to John Rupp I of Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania. A classic, streamlined long arm that exhibits all of the defining characteristics of the Lehigh School of Armory, it retains a silver hang tag confirming it was the 1979 Kentucky Rifle Association’s choice as “BEST. INCISED SCULPTED RIFLE ”. Joe Kindig Jr.’s respected thoughts on the Kentucky rifle in its heyday depicts a similar rifle, signed Rupp with the same Indian head / Liberty head engraving as seen on the sale pistol. auction. Estimate: $ 75,000 – $ 150,000

Another exceptional long weapon with prestigious provenance is a Kentucky swivel breech rifle from Berks County, Pa., Circa 1780, attributed to Nathan Boyer and originally owned by the Myer family. Centuries after its manufacture, it will become a valuable asset in the collections of George Murdock and, later, John du Mont. In du Mont’s notes on this rifle, he wrote that legendary long gun collector and author Joe Kindig Jr. once described it as “the best shotgun with swivel over / under. [he] knew. Featured in several reference books, it is offered with supporting ephemera and is estimated between $ 40,000 and $ 80,000.

A gorgeous pair of antique Kentucky flintlock pistols from Lehigh County, Pa., Constructed of tiger maple, with brass triggers and furniture, feature octagonal barrels, muzzle faces decorated with puncture dots, and front sight bars and engraved banners. The duo are featured in James R. Johnston’s book Accouterments IV and retain the label of author and authority Jim Dresslar. Little used and with all the indications of having been very well maintained, the pistols are offered with an estimate of $ 30,000 to $ 50,000.

An extraordinary historical relic and the most esteemed lot on sale is an inlaid pipe tomahawk from around 1780 that belonged to Sir Alexander Mackenzie (Scottish, 1764-1820), the first European to reach the Pacific Ocean. [in 1793]. The tomahawk pipe has featured in many prestigious reference books, not to mention Mackenzie’s own journals. He specifically mentions the play in an entry dated August 1793. In 1801, the diaries of his odyssey to the west were published, attracting wide attention. A year later, Mackenzie was knighted for his accomplishments. It would surely have been a source of pride for Mackenzie that even President Thomas Jefferson presented an American edition of the book to Meriwether Lewis, who took it with him on the Lewis & Clark Expedition in 1804. A first edition of the book de Mackenzie will pass on to the new owner of the Pipe Tomahawk, along with other supporting instants and the NRA Silver Medal he won in the NRA’s “Ten Best Weapons” competition in 1984. The pre-sale estimate is $ 150,000 to $ 500,000.

Some of the most remarkable edged weapons ever seen in Morphy’s gallery are in the Bill Myers collection. An American scalping knife mounted circa 1785 in silver with a Federal Eagle motif is 7½ inches long and is depicted in March to Massacre: A History of the First Seven Years of the United States Army by William H. Guthman. In this book, the author describes the dreaded weapon as a “white man’s scalping knife … which was designed for a successful lumberjack”. From Guthman’s personal collection, the lot is estimated at between $ 15,000 and $ 30,000.

A selection of 23 swords includes a major Revolutionary War era production created by a Pennsylvania rifle maker. Tiger maple gripped by a “chicken” style eagle-headed pommel, it has a slightly curved blacksmith’s blade that bears a star and the initials “PW” on the ricasso – a tantalizing clue that could tie the knot together. sword to the well-known armorer Peter White of the Emmitsburg School of Gunmakers. The sword was passed down to many later generations of the Armentrout family and was purchased by Bill Myers at a 2004 auction from the estate of Dr. C. Sherill Armentrout. It will cross the auction block at Morphy’s with an estimate of $ 10,000 to $ 20,000.

Powder horns of artistic and historical significance occupy a special place in the Myers collection. More than two dozen are featured in the September 29 auction, including one that is profusely embossed with a map of New York showing important towns, cities, rivers, and forts from the French War period and Indian. Even its cap is nicely decorated, with the engraved profile of an Indian wearing an earring. This powder horn has made multiple appearances in reference books and is well known to collectors. His auction estimate is $ 40,000 to $ 80,000.

One final highlight not to be missed is a unique hand-painted wooden sign from 1817 from the ancestral stone residence of the Rupp family in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania. Demolished in 1967, the farm was the birthplace of seven generations of the famous family of Pennsylvania rifle makers, including John Rupp. An example book, it is estimated between $ 10,000 and $ 30,000.

For more information on any item in the auction, call 877-968-8880 or email [email protected] Online:

Sarah Stoltzfus
Morphy auction
+1 877-968-8880
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