Longrifle by William Bogan
Marked: W. Bogan engraved behind the rear sight for William Bogan (1778-1877), Natural Bridge, Rockbridge County Virginia .
Maple stock with a commercial lock marked METCALF with double set triggers, original flint, iron fittings and a pewter nose cap.
Rifles made in Rockbridge have a reputation for being sturdy with a pronounced stock comb and imaginative patch boxes. William Bogan (b. 1778) is a rare maker and one of the few documented in Rockbridge County, VA. It is unclear from whom Bogan learned the art of rifle making but this rifle was made in the tradition of the southern Shenandoah Valley school.
Born in neighboring Botetourt County and listed in the census records there for 1810, 1820 and 1830, Bogan married Elizabeth Pullen in Rockbridge County in 1801 and may have worked there in the years following his marriage.
According to a written family history, William and his brother Benjamin, came to Ohio in the fall of 1833 and moved to Kirklin Township in Clinton County, Indiana in 1836 where the brothers bought land and settled with their families for the remainder of their lives.
This particular rifle is discussed by Edwin Gerwirz in “Long Rifles of the Valley of Virginia”, American Society of Arms Collectors Bulletin 60:2-19, pp.11-12.