Winchester m/1895


Winchester M/1895 was the last lever action rifle designed by John Moses Browning for Winchester factory. Its action was more stronger and simpler then the ones used in earlier Winchester rifles for a good reason, as it was originally designed mainly for new .30 US Army cartridge (used in Krag-Jörgensen rifles of US Army in that time). Rifle was produced not only as .30 US Army but also in .38-72, .40-72, .303 British, .30-03 and .30-06 in 3 main versions: Hunting rifle, musket and carbine. When WW1 started Russia didn't have even nearly enough rifles for its troops, committee sent to USA to look manufacturers for Mosin-Nagant M/91 rifles also made deal about delivering a modified version of M/1895 Winchester rifles to Russia. These rifles were basically musket version of M/1895 using Russian 7.62-mm service ammo, ammo-clips of Mosin-Nagant rifles and tangent-type back sight.

Between 1915 - 1917 some 293,800 M/1895 rifles were shipped to Russia where some of them ended up to Russian troops stationed in Finland. Year 1918 those rifles end up in hands of both sides fighting in Finnish Civil War. Winchester received reputation as elite status weapon in that war, unfortunately this lead into large amount of them being taken home as "war souvenirs" by their war-time users. Immediately after 1918 these rifles were issued to artillery and mine-thrower crews, but this didn't last long as Mauser M/98a carbines replaced them in this use already in 1919.

Small amount and shortage of spare parts lead into them being mostly warehoused until 1939, during this time large amount of M/1895 were given to non-military authorities and small amounts were also sold. During Winter War some were issued to artillery and home-front troops, in summer of 1940 less then 1,700 remained. After this Winchester rifles were no longer used by Finnish military, last remaining 503 rifles were sold to Finnish military personnel in 1950.