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Can A Felon Own A Black Powder Gun?

Can A Felon Own A Black Powder Gun

Black powder guns are firearms that enroll preliminary firearm technology. That kind of technology generally includes hand-loaded bullets. These black powder guns are very easy to operate. These are also easy for common people to manufacture compared to any regular gun. Lead balls and gun powder are also easy to make and are analogous to bullets.

People call a black powder gun a muzzleloader. Technically, a muzzleloader is a firearm that runs by pushing the projectile. In this method, usually, the powder charge is done through the muzzle. The black powder however is used instead of smokeless powder in a muzzleloader. That’s why a muzzleloader is considered a black powder gun.

Owning a black powder gun, however, is not against the rule. This is legal as a black powder gun is not a firearm. It can be purchased and owned by anyone without any legal permission or license.

Can A Felon Own A Black Powder Gun?

A felon, convicted of violent felonies, losses their rights to purchase, transfer, own, or use a firearm. These felonies are- murder, kidnapping, rape, robbery, armed burglary, arson, and aggravated assault. or any kind of dangerous weapon under the felon’s custody as per Federal and State laws.

If owning a traditional firearm is not possible, a felon may own a black powder gun as an alternative. Most firearms are loaded from the breech or the rear. But the loading technique of a muzzleloader is different. That’s why the authorities do not place too many restrictions on it.

In most countries, however, possession of a black powder gun is legal for a felon. On the other hand, certain states consider it illegal. The rules and regulations of having a black powder gun vary with countries.

Laws To Possess A Black Powder Gun

1 In the United States

In the United States, it is legal for a convicted felon to own a black powder gun during his custody or control. Under Federal and State laws, a black powder gun is also termed an ‘antique firearm’.

Antique firearms are discharged under the United States Gun Control Act of 1968.

can a felon own black powdergun

In this act, antique firearms are designated as:

  • Antique firearms are any kind of firearm having a frame or receiver. They are antique if the manufacturing date is on or before 1898.
  • Antique firearms are firearms with a matchlock. Besides that, such a gun may have a flintlock, percussion cap, or equivalent of a flaming system.
  • Any type of replica of an antique firearm should not be depicted for using a rimfire. The same is also applicable for standard centerfire ammunition. The rule also applies for guns that use allotted ammunition that is not manufactured anymore in the United States. and is not freely available in the commercial market. An antique firearm is any muzzleloading rifle, muzzle-loading shotgun, or muzzle-loading pistol. The manufacturers designed such guns especially to use black powder or a substitute for black powder. These should not use allotted ammunition.

As far as black powder guns qualify the above characteristics, a felon can own and use them. It will be completely legal to possess them.

2 In Utah

  • It is legal to own and uses a black powder gun for a convicted felon in Utah.
  • Utah follows the Federal law and permits a felon to possess a black powder gun.
  • Apart from this, authorities also permit archery equipment including crossbows.
  • This is legal until felons use it for hunting and target shooting.
  • This is valid, considering the felon is not confined by a court as a restriction of pretrial release.
  • Or, the felon is not under a probation of the Board of Pardons and Parole as a stipulation of the parole.
  • A black powder gun may also be turned into a dangerous weapon depending on its use.
  • If a felon uses a black powder gun as a dangerous weapon, it could be considered a serious crime.

3 As Per Federal Law

  • As per Federal laws, black powder gun falls into the category of antique firearms. So the GCA (Gun Control Act) does not prohibit possessing them.
  • A black powder gun, however, may turn into a firearm by the replacement of the barrel, bolt, breechblock, or any of. It can also become fire-fixed ammunition.
  • ATF has classified these muzzle-loading guns as firearms. That’s because these guns assimilate the frame or receiver.
  • That receiver is capable of receiving the barrels designed to fire standard rimfire or centerfire fixed ammunition.
  • Felons are however not allowed to possess such muzzle-loading guns.

The Federal explosive laws do not make it illegal for a felon to acquire and possess a black powder gun. The gun should not exceed the weight limit of fifty pounds. Besides, felons should use it only for sporting, recreational or cultural purposes.

can felon own black powdergun

Having a muzzleloader, however, does not give felon permission to hunt with it. It requires a hunting license to be eligible to hunt legally. If a felon wants to get the license and hunt legally, he has to remove his crime records from the court.

It requires precautions and a felon has to know the laws to hunt with a muzzle-loading gun. If any kind of mistake happens, a muzzleloader may turn into a deadly weapon. The authorities might arrest him again and send him go back to prison for such a mistake.

4 In California

In California, it is illegal to purchase, possess or use a black powder gun for a felon. The black powder guns qualify as antique firearms under California law. Instead of them, a convicted felon can possess daggers, dirks, or stilettos in his property. He, however, cannot carry them in cars or public.

5 In Florida

In Florida, it is illegal for convicted felons to possess a firearm. The list of firearms includes a muzzleloader or black powder gun. A felon can, however, own them if he has restored his firearm right. He can possess a gun which is certified as an antique firearm as per the laws of Florida. He can hunt with bows, crossbows, and air guns if he has a license for using them.

6 In Alaska

A felon can’t possess a black powder gun legally in Alaska. Anyway, he can apply for a pardon from the government of Alaska or the president of the United States. When the authorities approve his application, he can own a black powder gun.

7 In Michigan

In Michigan, it is illegal for a felon to own or use a firearm without an approved pardon from the government. The federal government however does not consider black powder guns as firearms. So, if there is no prohibition from the state, it is legal for a felon to possess a black powder gun.

8 In Illinois

In Illinois, if a felon wants to buy or own a black powder gun, he must obtain Firearm Owners Identification or FOID. A felon cannot purchase any firearm without this FOID. If a felon however possesses a firearm without FOID, even in his own house, the authorities consider it a crime.


In this article, we spoke about black powder guns or muzzleloaders as antique firearms. We also discussed the laws to possess a black powder gun in various countries. This might be useful to understand the rules and regulations to possess a black powder gun for a felon.

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16 thoughts on “Can A Felon Own A Black Powder Gun?”

  1. If the federal government doesn’t classify a black powder gun as a weapon how can the state over ride that and say it is a firearm???

  2. When a state exceeds federal law it violates your second amendment. And should not really be in the United States , as it acts like a individual and ignoring what unites us.

  3. I thought that when you paid your debt to society, you got a clean slate and The fact is there are no telling how many FELONS are in law enforcement,Gov’t and all positions with power that either didn’t get caught or had help making it go away to avoid convictions or just plain good at it and there are probably serial killers in top positions as trophy”s etc. But the common person with no connection to people in high places get punished for life, and would have to defend their home and families from invaders with guns with a knife. I could go on with scenarios but it is clear that it just isn’t right and being punished for life is cruel and unusual punishment as the ones who dish it out use privilege to escape paying any debt to society or serve the people they tax for fringe benefits like not paying for gas or vehicle insurance at taxpayer expense,etc. I thank you for allowing me to get it off of my chest. I hope those who cast stones are sent to the same place as Hippocrates and other hell bound people on judgement day. Amen! Hallelujah!!!

  4. I am being punished by the courts in Tennessee for Standing my ground after my nut neighbor put a gun to my head and fired at forehead and I was arrested charged with aggravated assault list goes on .been arrested 7 times at my home for defending myself against neighbor with guns my fists but Research of case law will provide avenue to good results even as a felon

  5. Was barely 17 years old when I was charged with a felony. Seved my time. Spent 21st birthday in prison.
    No violence, no weapons charges, and I am 52 years old now.
    Have never voted and have never had the right to defend myself under any circumstances.
    Just saying, one mistake and your life can be ruined forever.

  6. @Chris,, I’m 51 and know what you mean. In 1988 I was almost 18. Did 11 consecutive years for armed robbery. Went back in 2015 for a dui for 3 months but been out of trouble. It’s wrong in many ways that we are put in a position where we can’t legally defend ourselves unless you get a 5K lawyer to try and get your record expunged. I’m legally disabled from 2 heart surgeries. What do they expect us to do?

  7. I’m 51, had a clean record until I was 46 when a girlfriends ex attacked me at my house 3 times. I never reported the first two incidents, one being him trying to run me over in my own driveway. The 3rd time he followed us home from the next city over, blocked us in my driveway. My phone was dead so I couldnt call 911, tried to get into my house but garage door key pad had dead batteries. I could retreat no further. When he threw it in park and came at me he knocked me to the ground and started pummeling me. I had an every day carry pocket knife on me and used it until he broke off his attack on me. It wasn’t premeditated on my part and my reasoning was that if he already tried to run me over in my own driveway why would I think he had any less intent to harm me this time? Was charged with felony assault with a deadly weapon with a grave bodily injury clause that carried an extra 2 years for a total of 7 years in prison a guy with no record for almost half a century was facing 7 years in prison and a strike on my record.
    Had to plea in court to felony assault because a trial would have cost me an additional $18,000, which I did not have so I +qqdid 90 days in jail plus 3 years supervisedfelony probaion and $7000.00 restitution. I did my time and was ahead of my restitution payment schedule. The judge was so impressed with my desire to get this behind me she told me that if I paid my restitution off early, before my next scheduled court appearance that she world knock it down to a misdemeanor. I paid it off early and at my next court date I fully expected to have my felony knocked down to a misdemeanor. When I arrived at my courtroom my judge was out sick so there was a different judge who said that he could see where she wrote that in the notes but then said that he was not prepared to honor that promise made to me.
    My question is that if I eventually do get that felony knocked down to a misdemeanor am I still a prohibited person with no 2nd amendment rights or can I go duck hunting again?

  8. Justice system has very little justice left, they can twist any law the wish to meet there desires, and i bet not one you can explain the intent of the 100’s of thousands of codes on the books. If your a felon any one of those can take the rest of your life from you. This is a tragic existence, if fully realized the extent you would fear even living in a closet, much less the worry when fully encaged in business and society. Not only can you not own a gun or protect yourself like the guy story above, but its a felony i hear to have body armor and such, with the way things are going self preservation could become a necessity you wont have the luxury of legally . You see death is the only right they don’t truly take away.

  9. I don’t understand democrats win the vote almost twice as much and I thought the people liked the government dictating there lives. Why all the runny noses around here. You people just sound like crooks that are sore about getting fubar by the system. Get a hobby and get over it. I am a felon it was my first offense at 15 non-violent/sexual. I have committed many misdemeanors since then and have had my share of doing time , but have over the last 10 years been free from offenses. I have finished school and learned a few trades. Life is more encompassing than whether the Gov. thinks you are more likely to haul off and shoot someone. Stop letting them spit in your morning Cherios. I own antique guns but I cannot posses the ammo legally, big deal have I shot anyone. The Gov is not always right if they misjudged you you know and that is all that really counts.

  10. The constitution has been usurped by tyrants and criminals that laugh as we suffer under their unjust laws while they get rich off our taxes

  11. Christopher gray

    I’m being charged with a classy phony in Missouri for possession of a black powder firearm

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