A .451 Alexander Henry Sporting Rifle, No. 521, Circa 1860. With browned twist octagonal sighted barrel signed in full along the top flat and at the breech and rifled, the rifling in good condition, foliate scroll engraved case-hardened breech with platinum plug and engraved with a tigers head on top, foliate scroll engraved tang and signed lock decorated with a tiger in a landscape and with a stag on the tail beneath the engraved safety-catch, foliate scroll engraved dolphin hammer, highly figured half-stock (minor bruising) with chequered pistol-grip and fore-end, the former with foliate scroll engraved case-hardened ovoidal pommel-cap with hinged circular butt-trap cover, foliate scroll engraved steel mounts comprising butt-plate, hinged circular patch-box cover decorated with a stag in a landscape within a guilloche border, trigger-guard with a lion in a landscape on the bow, trigger-plate with foliate scroll engraved pineapple-shaped finial, chequered trigger, horn fore-end cap, sling loops, original brass-mounted ramrod.
Alexander Henry was born in 1828, and served his apprenticeship with T.E. Mortimer of Edinburgh, rising to become foreman of the factory before setting up in business on his own in 1853 at 12 South Street. He was a prolific inventor, with most of his innovations concerning the advancement of rifle design. His heptagonal rifling, patented in 1860, was used by the British Army for the Martini-Henry, and his falling-block design was adopted by several other countries. He continued to invent and was granted various patents throughout the 1870s, and eventually died in 1894. The business continuing until 1902 when Alexander Martin succeeded to the business.