Need help from Savage 99 expert


November 24, 2008, 08:36 AM
My husband inherited his great-grandfather's old 1899 .300 Savage, and I inherited my dad's old 99 .243. I wondered if anyone out there would be able to help me to age them. Not sure what they're worth on the market, but both are gems to us because they are family history and the only two guns left after both our families ransacked the rest of the firearms.

The 300 serial # is 330939, and the 243 is C070395. Both are lever actions.

I'm excited to begin collecting and educating myself about some of our family's history, and look forward to passing these onto our son and daughter. Any advice/information would be greatly appreciated.


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November 24, 2008, 08:59 AM
Hi Trina...

Do you have any photos you can post here ?


November 24, 2008, 09:04 AM
If you give me a minute, I'll go take one and get it up. ;)

November 24, 2008, 09:08 AM
Work on a bunch of good closeups, incl any engravings. Meanwhile, here's my Savage 99 family story that I posted here a year ago:

The Savage Model 99 in .250/3000 was bought in the mid 1920s. My grandfather was 40 years old when he bought it. His business was doing well and that, combined with the fact that this rifle would put much venison on the table, seemed to justify the considerable cost. My dad was seven years old at the time and remembers being allowed to look at the prized rifle. In 1942, before leaving for the war, he (my dad) was allowed to go deer hunting for the first time using the 99. He took a fine 8 point buck in the hills of western Pennsylvania where the family had lived since before the American Revolution.

In 1955, when I was five years old, my grandfather sold his business and retired to Florida. He gave the Savage to my dad. Ten years later I took my first deer with it. In the mid seventies my dad's heath prevented him from hunting and he offered the Savage to me. But I declined feeling that it should remain there with him, and it did till he died in 1980. That's when the Savage came to live with me. I took a deer with it almost every year, and when my son was 16 in 1990, he took his first with it as well.

I would guess that there have been at the very least 50 deer taken with this rifle over the years, probably closer to double that. I will keep it for awhile yet, but my six year old grandson already knows that one day it will be his. I figure that within the next ten years he will take his first deer - with his great-great grandfather's rifle.

November 24, 2008, 09:28 AM
Here's two quick pics to take a look at.

Thanks so much for sharing your story. My dad was an avid hunter (mostly deer, pheasant, and 'varmints'), and when he died back in 1985 (he was 73) my oldest brother took all of his guns. A few years back my husband mentioned to my mom that I would have liked one of his guns, who mentioned it to my brother (who I haven't seen for about 10 years), and surprisingly he brought over the 99 for me (he knew me & dad were close and it was dad's heart to see me get my own deer some day). What a perfect gun for me to do it with, although from what I read the .243 is a little small.

My husband's story is mostly the same. His great-grandfather re-married & when he passed she put all his things up for auction. This is the only gun (the .300) that made it to our house, and it was at my father-in-law's house until I started hunting. He gave it to us so that I would have a gun to use. He's into 'liquidating' mode with his collection because times are tough, and history doesn't mean so much to him as it does us. The .300 (and the .243, for that matter) would be great guns (and history) to pass down to our kids. If his dad had any clue it (the gun) was worth anything, he would probably sell it in a heartbeat.

November 24, 2008, 09:29 AM
By the way, another thing you might do since you seem hooked on researching the rifles :) is go to and search on Savage 99. This will give you a lot of pictures to compare and you can gauge condition. You'll also get some idea of selling prices. PS _ you have two fine rifles. When you go to gunbroker you will see some auctions that will have many pictures. Emulate the best of those so you can build a photo record of both guns (and to show us).

November 24, 2008, 09:43 AM
Google "99 Savage". You will find a serial # to date listing. Thats how I verified that mine was built in 1936.

November 24, 2008, 09:46 AM
I did find a site to date them, but the 243 is showing 'invalid #' with the C in the front. If I drop the C it's telling me 1906, which I don't think is correct.

November 24, 2008, 09:47 AM
The "official" Savage historian is John Callahan. His phone number is 1-413-568-7001 ext. 4396.

You will probably have to leave a message so he can call you back.

The .243 did not become a commercial cartridge until 1955 so it can't be earlier than that.


November 24, 2008, 09:52 AM
Thanks for the info, Shawnee. I'll give him a call. I almost feel like I'm going to call Santa Claus. :)

November 24, 2008, 10:12 AM
Trivia observation about the 99

It was brought out by hunters - for hunters in an era when hunting was often a necessary part of life.

Other prominent rifles of its' time were the Winchester and Henry lever-actions.

One seemingly small design feature it shares with those other classics is that its' receiver cross-section is rectangular - in other words "flat-sided" or "slab-sided". That is different from the bolt-action rifles that are so over-marketed today in that the cross-section of the bolt-action is more rounded. That's because the bolt-action is a military design pushed off on hunters. Bolt-actions were designed for soldiers who were expected to do a lot of firing while lying on the ground or in trenches. If moving very far they were slung on their shoulders. Lever-actions are not so good for firing from the prone (lying down) position because of the room needed to work the lever. But then - hunting with your rifle slung on your shoulder is like going to church with your pants hung over your arm.

I make the point because the "slab-sided" rifles like the Savage 99 and the other old lever-actions and the newer Marlin lever-actions are 56,000 times more comfortable to carry and maneuver while hunting than even the Very Best of bolt-actions.


November 24, 2008, 12:25 PM
Shawnee, how interesting! You're making me hang on to my guns a little tighter. Thanks for sharing the great info. Never thought I'd be teaching my husband about guns. And, quite possibly, the rest of the family, too. :)

November 24, 2008, 05:10 PM
Your 300 is a model 99G made in 1930.Not a collectors gun since it was drilled & tapped for the scope mounts and the stock cut for a recoil pad. A great hunting gun and a takedown is allways cool. I use a 99EG in 300

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