56-50 id

Are these all the same? OAL’s are all the same but case lengths are different. Any comments on dating these would be appreciated as well.

Only going by the pics looking at it the 4th from the right seems to be a 56-52 and the last one
a 56-56 the 56-50 JG underlined is a good one and so is the S^W (SAGE ARMS WORKS)
however there is 3 different varietys in that stamp and a RAISED ONE at 125US$ that last one
is very scarce.

The three on the left are .56-.50 Spencers, the second and third being of Goldmark and Sage manufacture (1865-66 or so). I can offer no sound opinion on the leftmost, but it is a commercial product later than the others. Jack

  1. The first is a 56-50 Spencer. hard to tell from the picture but possibly by UMC.
  2. Number two is a 56-50 by Joseph Goldmark. They also used a “J.G” headstamp without the underline. They produced 56-50’s from 1864 to 1866.
  3. 56-50 Spencer by Sage Ammunition works (1864-1866)
  4. 56-56 Spencer or 56-52 (?) by Union Metallic Cartridge Co. The started using the impress “U” around 1885. The bullet on this one looks somewhat unusual.
  5. 56-56 Spencer not sure who made this one.


All, thanks so much I really appreciate it! Rimfire, the last one has a D Headstamp if that helps. V/r Henry

Henry: I thought I saw a D but there are scratches that make one cautious. It was made by Dominion Ctg Co under one of its corporate styles, probably late 19th cent up to about WW.I. Jack

Jack, thank you. Yes there’s a scratch but definitely a D as well!! Appreciate it, nice to have such history here with these.

I wonder about the strange bullet on the number 4, 56-56…

Perhaps it’s a .56-.56 bullet stuck in a .56-52 case. Even if it were properly seated it would have too great an OAL to work through the magazine of the Spencer. Jack

It certainly does not look right. I noticed that from the start. Perhaps my oldest dingbat!

Yeah, I missed the impressed “D” just saw the scratch. Dominion started using the “D” headstamp sometime in the early 1890’s. Like jack said probably didn’t make any Spencers much after WWI if at all.