Because someone keeps asking me to blog about the rifle that I let her shoot a while back...
This rifle is a Mossberg Model 44US. It's a cut-rate version of their commercial 44B, made specifically as a trainer for US military soldiers during World War Two.
This is one of the earlier-production rifles (SN 100,001-114,500) that came with the Lyman 57MS peep sight.
I bought this particular rifle back when the CMP (Civilian Marksmanship Program, successor to the DCM) was selling them for $75.00. I almost didn't, but a friend and I did the old "I'll buy one if you'll buy one" deal. When it came, the only wear on it was a log scratch in the wood stock where someone at CMP had carelessly sliced it out of the shrink-wrap that it was in, marring the stock with his blade. This, sadly, was quite common but it in no way detracted from the rifle's shooting ability. I had to hunt up a magazine for it because they came without, but I found two in short order. (Always get spares. If you have to replace a part once, you'll likely have to replace it again sometime.) The rear sight was gummed up with preservative, but once I got it freed up and working, I was amazed at how well it shot.
Unfortunately, by the time I got around to cleaning it up and shooting it and realized what a peach it is, the CMP had run out of them and the scumbag re-sellers that are the bane of the CMP's programs were demanding quite a bit more than $75.00. (I've seen them going for ten times that these days.) I'm glad that I got this one when I did, but, like the $59.00 SKS rifles and $129.00 M-1 carbines that used to be so abundant, I sure wish I'd bought more than one at that price!