Yup its a real 1861 Merrill carbine 1st type. Don't know if I would ever fire it but based on the air pressure check I did the plug seal in the chamber is near perfect. the barrel as I said before has really good rifling left too. If there's strong money in these then maybe it will be sold and profits used to get a couple of rifles I enjoy collecting/shooting like the Savages and early Winchesters. Hard to believe every things there and in perfect working order with just battle scars and age showing. I am hoping to get to the $2500.00 range, that would make me very happy.