Hollis & Sheath Cased 25 Bore Rifle
Hollis & Sheath Cased 25 Bore Rifle. A very fine cased Hollis & Sheath 25 bore rifle in excellent original condition. In its original case with accessories. A particularly fine James Dixon & Sons leather covered flask and a superb bullet mould by the renowned maker William Davies. Also included in this set are a number of F.H.Smith’s patent rifle cleaners which are rare & unusual.
Hollis and Sheath were well known and well established Birmingham, England Gunmakers. They made exceptionally high quality arms from 1852-1862.
Hollis & Sheath were licenced makers of percussion breech loading guns under Frederick Prince’s patents 386 of 1855, and 3036 of 1856. Isaac Sheath himself held patent No. 996 of 26 April 1853 for a revolver part (?). The license to make Frederick Prince’s patent probably passed to the London Armoury Company Ltd in 1861 when the firm changed its name to Isaac Hollis & Sons on the departure of Isaac Brentnall Sheath.
On 1 May 1861 Isaac Hollis (I) patented a single piece trigger guard and trigger plate (No. 1082). He patented another in 1868 (No. 4922). In the 1861 census, Isaac and Emma, Isaac (II), Henry, Emma (II), Louisa and Fanny Charlotte were recorded living at 35 Frederick Street with a cook and a housemaid. By this time Isaac (II) and Henry were recorded as gun makers, but Alfred was not recorded. Emma died in January 1867 and in about 1868 Isaac (I), who was 53 years old, married Catherine who was only 18 years old (b.1850). The 1871 census records Isaac (I) and Catherine living at Summerside, Great Malvern, Worcestershire. Isaac (I) described himself as a gun maker but was obviously semi-retired. Not surprisingly, Isaac (I) died in July 1875 only about 8 years after marrying Catherine. By about 1870 Isaac (II) and Henry had taken over the day to day running of the business. Isaac (II) was responsible for overall management and the marketing of the firm’s products. Henry was responsible for manufacturing.
The firm became volume producers of inexpensive trade guns and sporting guns for the South African and Indian markets, but they also made quality guns for British provincial makers such as Crockart of Blairgowrie.