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$11,000 Winchester pulled from under bed!

Oct 18th 2014, Kramer Auction Gallery Prairie du Chien, WI.

What under your bed? Might not hurt to take another look! Auctioneer Curt Kramer recently received a call from a gentleman who had pulled a long forgotten family heirloom from under his.  It was an old Winchester Rifle from the 1800’s that had been in the family for the past 3 generations. A friend had told him it should be worth around $5,000 but after taking it to some local gun Shops he was unable to obtain any buyers at that price. My name had come up in conversations as someone whom he should talk to about this old rifle. I was however, not too optimistic, I get A LOT of calls about rare old guns which seldom turn into anything of interest, but the conversation was intriguing so I thought, maybe this one would be different.

A day later I was pulling the rifle from a ratty old case, and immediately a smile crew on my face.  I was now holding a very pristine, original Winchester 1876 rifle, heavy with original blue & bright case colored hammer & lever. The wood retained most of the original varnish & the action was crisp, as it should be for a gun with very little use over the past 128 yrs. Even the original 4 piece cleaning rod rattled in the trap door of the butt plate!

At that point I told him he was a very lucky man no one had taken him up in his $5,000 price tag & he looked puzzled. Even after a quick look at the gun I assured him that we should be able to achieve approximately double that price, and so the stage was set for our Fall 2014 firearms auction.

Along with this exciting gun we had a very fine collection of Winchesters from an old Estate from Northern Wisconsin.

The top lot & big talk of the day was the fine local find, the 1876 “under the Bed” Winchester. This lot started at $6,000 & after the Crowd, Phones & internet bidding stopped this treasure traded for $11,000. Over double what he had originally been asking for the gun!

Another fine Winchester finished with the 2nd spot of the day.  A rare 1873 Takedown rifle in 22 short demanded $7,700.  Then a nice Winchester 1866 Saddle Ring Carbine was strong at $6,050. A pair of Transferable Registered machine guns finished made a strong showing a good DLO Sten 9mm Tube gun needing $5,520 and a Rockola M2 remanufactured 30 cal Carbine $4,925. Both of these NFA weapons had lots of interest & transferred to buyers from out of state.

Some rare commemorative arms set also achieved strong prices. Tops were a Colt 3 Gun Commemorative Pistol set, this fine cased set traded at $4,425. Next a Winchester Matched set 1 of 1000 Model 94 & 9422 rifles demanded $4,140. Third spot went to a Winchester Colt Commemorative Rifle & Revolver pair. They demanded $2,875 before shipping out to a happy internet bidder. A scare Winchester 94 Nez Perce Commemorative rifle started a bidding war between a phone & Online bidder before resting at $2,300.

One of the holy grails for Winchester 22 collectors is the Model 52 Sporter, This rifle was mfg in 1956 & resembling the Model 70 rifles of that time. This jewel rose to $4,730 before finding a new owner. Another scare Winchester 22, a fine Model 61 22 Smoothbore ended strong at $3,630. A Model 61 in a desirable 22 WRF caliber demanded $2,070. Winchester Model 71 Deluxe Rifle w/ early short tang & bolt peep cost $3,575.

A Rare Winchester Model 697 (This is a basic model 67 made without iron sites & factory fitted with a Winchester scope). These are regarded as some of the rarest factory made Winchester rifles of all. This good example made $2,175.

A Browning Diana Grade Superposed 12ga. traded at $3,450, and a Winchester 101- 3 Bbl. skeet set took shot to $3,100.

Kramer’s Winter Gun Auction is set for Sat. January 24th & will feature over 400 Firearms. It will include some fine Colts, Winchesters & Military Arms. Plus a fine collection of advanced air rifles, 2 original Newton Bolt Action rifles, Rare Winchester advertising & much more. 

For information on this sale watch for ads in this paper; contact Curt Kramer at (608) 326-8108 or view items online at


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Other questions on selling with us?  Call or email Curt at 608-326-8108 or

Click Here to read our interview with Mark Kakkuri in the August 2010 Issue of the Gun Digest Magazine titled "SOLD" Firearms auction thrive in a difficult ecomomy.