Here is a U.S. Model 1870 Rifle with the number of 17 on it that could be a serial number put on before the use of such a sequential accounting was dropped early in production. I brought it home today after coming upon it in the posession of an old man from Council Bluffs, Iowa who asked me if I was interested in looking at it. He said that his wife had died recently and he was just getting rid of a lot of things around the house. It's in "attic Condition" with the original trapdoor sling whose leather is quite supple and clean. The wood hasn't been cleaned or messed with and has never been sanded. The light colored lines under the forarm is a reflection and not in the wood. The wood is clean and unmolested and quite dark. The crack in the edge of the wood next to the number is the end of a very minor age crack that is solid and runs only 3/4 of an inch. That being said, there is no sign of there ever being any stamps on the stock anywhere. The metal is smooth and although dark in places should clean up nicely. There is only one small patch of pitting on the right side close to the muzzle. The bore is excellent. Most of the original dark oil quench finish is on the receiver and the lockplate and hammer. Two click tumbler works perfectly. I pulled the lock plate and the inside of the lock plate was clean and without any dirt or grease. I lightly oiled it and put it back on. The rifle shows use but no abuse. At some point after being in the field, it was cleaned and just set aside. It must've been made within the first hour of the first day of production of this model. The rifle is possibly one of the very first in the production run of the 1870. Sorry for the fuzzy pictures, I'll take better ones and post them here. The stock has the old original linseed oil finish put on at the Armory. It's quite shiny and has turned the stock dark with age. Anyway, here it is, possibly the 17th 1870 Springfield rifle produced. It's for Sale or Trade.