I’d like to know more about my Midland Gun Co. shotgun?
When I bought the gun, I was told that it was built in 1910.
The number is 840. Can you tell me anything more about it?
MIDLAND GUN CO SHOTGUN
The number 840 is the lowest that I have seen for a Midland Gun Co shotgun.
Though it is not possible to ascribe a definite date to your gun, I suspect it is more like 1900 than 1910.
Its most interesting feature is that it bears London proof marks.
This suggests it was made by a jobbing gunmaker in London. Most Midland guns were made in the Birmingham trade.
The Anson & Deeley action has nice arched backs, which resemble those on the Midland’s Zephyr model in the 1927 catalogue.
The Zephyr cost £20 if an ejector or £15 if a non-ejector.
Your gun does not resemble any gun in the earlier catalogue, which is from about 1905.
The mark reading “Beesley’s patent ejector” refers to Frederick Beesley’s patent of 1889.
One cannot be certain who engraved the gun, but it is done to a high standard.
It may have been done by Harry Morris, who was active in Birmingham from 1906 to 1964.
However, as the gun appears to be from the London trade, it may have been engraved by Harry Kell (1881-1958).
The other possibility is Jack Sumner (c1885-1940s).
Sadly, few of these artists signed their work.