This is a classic example of a Pennsylvania longrifle, a uniquely American type of firearm popularly known as a Kentucky rifle. It was probably made around the time that Kuntz moved from Northampton County, Pennsylvania, to Philadelphia. The restrained Rococo carving of the wood and the confident treatment of the engraved brass demonstrate the skills that distinguish Kuntz as one of the finest gunmakers of the period.
Signature: Signed on the lock in stylized script: JK;
On the barrel: J. Kuntz.
Ex. coll.: Wilfrid Wood.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "American Rococo 1750–1775: Eighteenth Century Elegance in Ornament," January 26–May 17, 1992, no. 7.
Los Angeles. Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "American Rococo 1750–1775: Eighteenth Century Elegance in Ornament," July 5–September 27, 1992.
Peterson, Harold L. The Treasury of the Gun. New York: Golden Press, 1962. p. 144, ill.
Nickel, Helmut. "Arms and Armor From the Permanent Collection." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 49, no. 1 (Summer 1991). pp. 47, 64, ill.
Heckscher, Morrison, and Leslie Greene Bowman. American Rococo, 1750–1775: Elegance in Ornament.. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1992. pp. 10, 12, no. 7, ill.