BIG-calibre Winchester rifles used to hunt buffalo and moose, a 1470 matchlock musket that boasted the first firearm firing mechanism and a dagger given to senior leaders in a Nazi work program.
The rare and unusual weapons are among items listed at an auction of militaria in Portland tomorrow.
Brian O’Halloran from the Glenelg Auction Centre said more than 1200 lots were on offer, including outstanding items from a major collection, three smaller collections and individuals.
The “History Under the Hammer” auction will include 70 antique guns, samurai swords brought back from the post-World War Two occupation of Japan, hats and helmets from both world wars, bayonets and pistols from the Gold Rush era.
Antique gun expert Don Mahoney said the auction had brought together the best collection of military items he had seen. “They’re very collectable,” Mr Mahoney said.
He said the two Winchester rifles — one made in 1876 and the other from 1886 — were very scarce even in the United States where they were made.
“We (Australia) only got the 1873 Winchester which was used for hunting kangaroos. We never got these big ones.”
He estimated the 1876 Winchester was worth between $7000-$10,000 and the later one between $5000-$6000.
Among six sets of cased pistols is a travelling pair of gold merchant’s pistols that come with a set of gold scales in the carrying case.
Other notable items were Scottish dirks — traditional long daggers with a straight blade — and a RAD (from the Reich Labour Service) Hewer-style knife given to senior RAD members.
The militaria auction will begin at 10am.