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J.C. Higgins model 50 DOM

338magnut338magnut Member Posts: 695 ✭✭✭
edited November 2019 in Ask the Experts
Anyone tell me if there is a way to tell when a J.C. Higgins model 50 cal. 270 Win was made ? I have looked all over the barrel and the receiver but can't find a serial number unless it is under the stock. The only numbers I have found are on the barrel 583.94 which I assume are the Sears model number. Any info is always appreciated.

Comments

  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,348 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I don't think you can exactly date them. They were good rifles.

    https://www.chuckhawks.com/j_c_higgins_50.htm
  • TRAP55TRAP55 Member Posts: 8,278 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Made 1951-55, and I've heard the early ones didn't have a serial number. The barrels were High Standard and chrome lined, I think John Stimson might have the dates of manufacture.
  • rufesnowrufesnow Member Posts: 250 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Got the below link, off the net regarding your rifle. According to him it was made by FN, and should be serial numbered. I would take the stock off, to see if there is a serial and proof marks concealed by the wood.

    One of my references, shows the proof date consisting of a single digit stamped inside a box. From 1950 to 1955 it would be the number(s), 1 to 5.









    https://www.chuckhawks.com/j_c_higgins_50.htm
  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,318 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Sears went over to Ted Williams branding starting in 1961 with phase in through 1964, so it had to have been made before then.
  • 338magnut338magnut Member Posts: 695 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Took the stock off this morning couldn't find a box with single number in it but did find on the bottom of the receiver number 5451. Hope maybe this will help with dom. Thanks for help thus far.
  • rufesnowrufesnow Member Posts: 250 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    338magnut wrote:
    Took the stock off this morning couldn't find a box with single number in it but did find on the bottom of the receiver number 5451. Hope maybe this will help with dom. Thanks for help thus far.



    Got to be very early production, IMHO. I though everything firearms wise, that was made in Belgium had to be proofed? John Stimpson, ( High Standard gruu ). Would be your best bet. After H-S folded in the mid 80's. They sent all their business records and documentation, to the BATF. Stimpson obtained copies from the feds. If data for the early rifles they built for Sears? is included, he would know.
  • 338magnut338magnut Member Posts: 695 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    How can I contact Mr. John Stimson ?
  • John StimsonJohn Stimson Member Posts: 26
    edited November -1
    The Model 50 first appeared in the Sears Roebuck Fall and Winter 1951 catalog and last apeared in the 1956 Fall and Winter catalog. It was also sold as a barreled action.

    It had Sears reference numbers 583.90 through and incuding 583.98. It was offered in .30-06 and .270 calibers. The action was a FN mauser action imported trough Firearms International as I reall. The barrel and stock were of High Standard manufacture. Since it was imported as an action there would be no proof mark by FN on the receiver. This preceeded the High Stadanrd acceptance date code practice used by High Standard. I have not found the serial number log for these rifles in the surviving records but they may be there.

    The Deluxe version was the Model 51 which had a checkered Monte Carlo stock. The Model 51 appeared in the Fall and Winter 1955 catalog and last appered in the Fall and Winter 1959 catalog. It was available in the same calibers as the Model 50.

    The Model 51-L first appeared in the Sears Fall and Winter 1959 catalog and last appeared in the Spring and Summer Sears 1965 catalog. It came in a plain version in .30-06 and in a deluxe version in .30-06, .270, .308, and .243. This was based on the Husqvarna Mauser action imported by Tradewinds.

    In the Sears 1965 Fall and Winter catalog the Model 53 ( Winchester Model 70) first appeared as the replacement for the Model 51-L . It was available in .30-06 and .270 calibers.

    My Guess would be the 583.94 is from 1952/1953 time frame.

    The Ted Willliams tradename is not relevant here as it was well past the Model 50. High Standard models did not get the Ted Williams name as early as 1961. The first Ted Williams branded guns I have found was in the Fall and Winter 1962 catlog. I would add that the transition from J. C Higgins to Ted Williams was varied as to date depending on the particular vendor and model. Some High Stadandard models went theotu a period between J. C. Higgins and Ted Williams when the carried only the SEARS name. Some High Stadanrd models never made the transition> SOme changed for J. C. Higgins to simply SEARS and were then discontinued. I'm pretty sure the 51-L was one of these.


    The Jon Wolfe article has some good data and some errors.
  • TRAP55TRAP55 Member Posts: 8,278 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I've found that most, if not all Sears store guns, had only a Sears serial number, and so far, no one has turned up a data base for them.
  • John StimsonJohn Stimson Member Posts: 26
    edited November -1
    The High Standard manufactured Sears guns that normally had serial numbers are on record in the High Standard records I have from ATF. That would include the Model 80 ( Dura-MAtic ), the Model 88 ( Sentinel ), and the Model 90 ( Double Nine ). Sears after dropping High Standard as a vendor returned as a customer for a .410 bore pump shotgun. THis was after the point in January 1969 when serial numbers were required.

    After December 1956 HIgh Stadanrd marked the unserial numbered guns for Sears with a two character acceptance date code.
  • TRAP55TRAP55 Member Posts: 8,278 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    John, that's why I thought you might have the HS numbers if anyone did. Bert H. and I had a discussion about Winchesters sold by Sears. They didn't have a Winchester number on them, it was a Sears number. Still don't know for sure who applied them, as Winchester did them in the polishing room. Best guess is Sears had a list for Winchester to apply. Data base has never turned up yet.
  • 11b6r11b6r Member Posts: 16,725
    edited November -1
    Just a general note: Serial numbers were not required by law on rifles and shotguns until 1968, and serializing guns did cost money. The numbers you find on many (not all) Sears guns, like the 583.94 are NOT serial numbers, but ARE model numbers. When I was an LEO I once tried to look up the number on a Sears pump shotgun on the NCIC data base- and got 12 hits as a stolen gun. Other LEOs had been entering the model number as a serial number. Sears quit carrying firearms in (IIRC) 1989.
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