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FRANKFORD ARSENAL  20 GAUGE SHOTGUN CARTRIDGE PACKET – FOR THE MODEL 1881 SPRINGFIELD TRAPDOOR FORAGER SHOTGUN - FULL AND COMPLETE WITH ALL 10 MATCHING PRIMED ROUNDS – A RARE INDIAN WARS PACKET:  As issued to the troops at the frontier posts, these packets of 20 Gauge Shotgun Cartridges were manufactured at the Frankford Arsenal for the Model 1881 Springfield Trapdoor Forager Shotgun.  Supplied to the soldiers as unloaded primed and unprimed cartridges in packets of ten, the soldiers on the frontier used Ordnance Department provided loading sets and components to load these cartridge cases with powder and shot for use in hunting small game to supplement their rations. 

The individual Trapdoor Forager Cartridges have become increasingly difficult to find available on the market, and the demand for, and the continued scarcity of, the single cartridges attest to the popularity of this unique cartridge among Indian War collectors.  Much rarer are these full original packets produced at Frankford Arsenal which apparently experienced a very low survival rate, and subsequently are seldom encountered on the collector’s market. 

In relatively excellent condition, this packet is full form, being manufactured of the khaki colored card stock material used in other Frankford Arsenal packets.  The top label is fully intact and completely legible.  The packet was assembled at the arsenal using staples at the corners rather than the paper packing tape the arsenal used on other pistol, carbine and rifles cartridge packets during this period.  The staples on the packet lid are all present and only one is missing on the packet body.  All of the outer edges and corners are intact and while there is some wear to the top edge of the body of the packet, overall the packet retains its shape and integrity.  There is no evidence that these packets were sealed with a paper wrapper, and none is present on this packet, rather it is held shut by the friction of the lid over the body. 

The cartridges in this packet appear to be in “like new” condition, showing no signs of having been loaded or fired.  All ten cartridges are in full form with no crushing, crimps, splits, or other damage, and the case walls retain clean, bright surfaces with a nice even color to the brass.  All ten bear the same matching headstamp, “F 9 00 No. 20”.  An added value, the original paper sheet which divides the two layers of cartridges is present and intact.  These paper sheet dividers seldom survive the passage of time.     

A rare offering, this Frankford Arsenal packet of Model 1881 Springfield Trapdoor Forager 20 Gauge Shotgun Cartridges would be a notable addition to your Indian Wars or cartridge collection.  SOLD



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