Bethlehem School
Lehigh County - Allentown

LeHigh Color Photo

The beautiful contemporary rifle above by Dane Lund was made in the style of the Lehigh County, Bethlehem School. The elegant fine lines of this early style of Lehigh County rifle are sleek and handsome to the eye. These early guns were much heavier in the buttstock but transitioned quickly into thin wrists and fine forestocks.

Makers located in the Lehigh and Northampton Counties were considered in the Bethlehem School:  The Albrights (Nazareth), Rupp (near Allentown), John Moll (Northampton County), Isaac Berlin (Easton), John Young and Nicholas Hawk of Northampton County, and Peter Moll were of this area. All were considered Bethlehem School makers.


Our pre-shaped stock is closest in design to the work of John Moll or John Rupp. Recently I received a picture of an original piece requesting me to reproduce one of the most elegant John Rupp ca 1800 patchboxes I have seen on such an early style gun. I present it here as a recent addition to our growing line of custom patchboxes. Although very ornate in its design, this box flows around the arch in the buttstock of these unique Lehigh longrifles. We are also currently adding a patchbox from a Nicholas Hawk longrifle and a Jacob Kuntz with 6 piercings, as well.

 

STANDARD SPECIFICATIONS
Straight Octagon barrels….......13/16 or 7/8”
Drilled ramrod hole ..........….....5/16”or 3/8”
Barrel Channel Length ……………........42”
Butt width x height……….......1-13/16” x 5”
Lock area ……………….…......1-1/2” x 8”
Width across the lock face …...........1-9/16”
Drop at the heel ……………………........5”
Trigger Pulls up to 15”   

PRE-SHAPED STOCK with
STRAIGHT BARREL & RAMROD CHANNEL
  

30893      P++ Grade Curly Maple
30894      SP   Grade Curly Maple
30895     SP+ Grade Curly Maple
30896     Cherry
30820      Inlet Lock (for Silers only)
30830      Inlet Trigger
STANDARD  FITTINGS & PARTS
14925      Siler Flintlock
14855      Davis Single Pull Trigger
19380      7/8” x .50 caliber Green Mountain Barrel
16080      Flared Tang Breech Plug 5/8-18
21180      1/4”-28 S.S. Touch Hole Liner – Slot Head
19630      2 ea, Oval Head 8-32 Lock Screws
16450      1 ea, Tang Screw 8-32
27600      3ea, Underlugs for Pins
16380      1 Pkg of 10 Oval Head #3 Wood Screws
16390      1 Pkg of 10 Oval Head #5 Wood Screws
16400      1 Pkg of 10 Oval Head #8 Wood Screws
PINSTOCK      1 Pkg of 6 Pieces Pin Stock 1/16”o.d.
25450      1 Pkg German Silver Nails for Inlays
16795      3/8 Ram Rod w/ 8-32 Brass Tip
MOUNTINGS
29300  Buttplate (Brass)
14470  Triggerguard (Brass)
13610  Rear Thimble (Brass)
13670  Upper Thimbles (Brass)
21990  Sideplate (Brass)
11436  Rupp Toeplate (Brass)
12860  Nosecap (Brass )
10320  Patchbox (Brass)**
10560  Rupp Patchbox (Brass)**
16500  Front Sight (Silver Blade)
16540  Rear Sight (Early Low)
25830  Wrist Inlay (German Silver)
25850  Cheek Inlay (German Silver)

Rupp Buttplate Our beautiful new Rupp Patchbox!

Brass #10960 has 2 finial piercings German Silver #10970

Rifles from the Lehigh Valley are known for a very unique profile. They share some very similar characteristics with neighboring Bucks County. The comb-line is very graceful, with an ever-so-slight curve while the lower line exhibits a gentle arc to the toe. Lehigh County gunsmith John Moll and later John Moll, Jr. (sometimes spelled Mull) are recorded as makers in the tax records from 1781 through 1821. Their specific design elements, as well as those of Young and Hawk, are accurately and historically portrayed in our pre-shaped stock. A very slight almost straight roman nose, high drop, elegant undercurve and tall buttplate are details of the Moll style. Molls triggerguards were broad. Another maker and very articulate in design, engraving, carving and wire inlay, was John Rupp, ca 1800. The nose of the comb of this stock can be shaped to match the Rupp style by blending the nose into the wrist. This graceful stock also matches a later Rupp rifle, circa 1800 of Lehigh County, PA. which I recently produced a new patchbox for. It is an elegant rifle of .48 caliber, 42” straight octagon barrel. (Please note that the double curve of the earlier Lehigh is available but not shown. Just call and ask and we can order this other style for you)! Right-hand only.