Courtesy Logan Metesh

Known as “The Oldest House in St. Augustine,” the González-Alvarez House dates to 1723. It’s an impressive yet simple structure that blends its original Spanish architecture with English influences as it changed hands over the years.

My Quest to Find Old Guns in Old Homes

Being both an enthusiast of historic homes and antique arms, I had hoped to be able to combine both of my interests at this location. After all, a home with almost 300 years of history is bound to have at least one gun, right?

I wasn’t disappointed. I spotted a Model 1836 flintlock pistol (read my piece about the last flintlock pistol design adopted by the US military here), and a Civil War-era Smith carbine.

My Quest to Find Old Guns in Old Homes

What really caught my eye, though, was a Virginia Manufactory musket in its original flintlock condition (representative example at top; exact gun below this paragraph). Made in Richmond, Virginia, this particular .69-caliber musket was called a “2nd Model – 3rd Type Musket” and is based off of the Springfield Model 1812 musket.

The 3rd type is the only variation from the Virginia Manufactory to feature a brass flashpan. All of the other models used an iron flashpan. Produced from 1818 to 1822, this 1818-dated example is from the first year of production.

The Manufactory made two pistol models, two musket models, and two rifle models between 1801 and 1821. It was reopened 39 years later and produced arms for the Confederacy during the Civil War.

My Quest to Find Old Guns in Old Homes

How this musket made its way to St. Augustine, Florida, is anybody’s guess, but I’m sure glad it did. You don’t see a ton of these arms floating around, and I certainly wasn’t expecting to see one in this house museum.

If you find yourself in the area, be sure to visit. The house is really cool and the locally-operated museum is well-done.

To wrap up, arms from this Richmond-based operation are highly collectible. Based on the condition of this piece, I’d put the value around $5,000.

 

Logan Metesh is a firearms historian and consultant who runs High Caliber History LLC. Click here for a free 3-page download with tips about caring for your antique and collectible firearms.

 

12 COMMENTS

  1. Kicking myself now. We took a long weekend couple years ago. Wife reminded me that when we stopped by the house it was very crowded and we chose to move on. The canon firing at San Marcos was very well done.

  2. Cool…I’m a long-time antique & fine art dealer. I’d love to add firearms but dang everyone wants an arm & a leg for beat up chit. I have guy’s who buy but it’s hard to get any deals.

    • Thanks to our former Gov. Jerry Brown and the now-infamous “Gunmaggeddon” slew of gun control laws he signed back in 2016, any changes of possession (such as a simple loan) now constitute “transfer” and must go through an FFL, background check, waiting period, etc. Even to get your own gun back!

      So before that particular requirement went into effect, private owners of classic, military, and antique guns reclaimed them from museums all over the State. Sad.

  3. BREAKING. New Mexico cop killed by perp who was later killed by other officers. Allow for another event within 12 or so days.

    El Presidente will use this as another call for more gun control.

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  4. I love history. Especially about firearms. Thanks for doing this. Another great post not about politics.
    Big (smile)

  5. I found two guns, hidden above the duct work when I purchased my first house about 18 years ago. One was a Ducks Unlimited Marlin .22 bolt action (NIB). The other was a Model 97 Winchester in good condition (including original leather case and wooden cleaning rods) which I sold for $500, since I personally was never going to use it (already have a modern 12g). I kept the Marlin.

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