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COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY .45, 7-1/2". IVORY GRIP, NICKEL,  FACTORY LETTER , 1884

Serial No. 9915X is relatively early in the nickel plating process for Colt and best of all, the Factory Letter states Nickel Plated. This Colt shipped on April 11, 1884 to Hartley & Graham in NY, in a shipment of 50. Quoting a Colt document, " finding a fine early era nickel revolver is a rare find". This specimen has about 45-50% original nickel finish, some scattered throughout with the heaviest concentration on the frame, hammer and cylinder. ALL factory applied markings are clear and present: barrel address, frame patents, serial numbers (ALL matching) and caliber on trigger guard shoulder. Perhaps most important the Colt is 100% mechanically correct, ALL the working actions function 100% correctly. An outstanding feature of this Single Action is the one piece Ivory grip. Showing normal handling maarks, BUT NO damage ! After 139 years thay have achieved the natural wonderful mellow yellow patina, with age striations on the butt. Real and untouched since being palced on this revolver. The letter says grips, unlisted, so maybe factory, more likely the selling distributor OR done at the Colts final destination, either way 139 years ago!

Considering it was a 50 Colt shipment, you know they went WEST ! that is where the demand existed. It is extremely difficult to find EARLY Black Powder configuration Single Actions today, let alone long barrel, Ivory grip and EARLY nickel.

PRICE $5,850

COLT MODEL 1871-1872, "OPEN  TOP" .44 HENRY RIM FIRE SINGLE ACTION REVOLVER, FACTORY LETTER,

SIGNIFICANT INFORMATION !

The Model of 1871 is a significant step in the evolution of Colt, and reaching the cap stone of development, the famed Single Action Army. Significant because it was never in any part or parcel a percussion revolver, a cartridge revolver in every aspect. This example, Serial No. 267X was shipped on March 4, 1874 to Francis de Gress. If you have been collecting Colt for a while you will recognize this, as Wexell &DeGress a huge buyer with offices in New York and Mexico City. They had the contracts with the Mexican Government and many Colts went that direction, plus civilian sales. The NY office was a mere receiving/billing point to gather and ship to Mexico City. Always exciting to get a Colt Letter , shipped to Wexell & DeGress ! Interesting to note: Francis DeGress was the Partner in the firm, and this shipped directly to him !Beyond the history and shipping, it matches the Factory Letter, .44 Rimfire,7-1/2 inch barrel, Wood Grips. The finish shows blue, BUT not so, as Wexell & DeGress had brand new Colts nickel plated, as their customers preferred nickel. ALL factory applied markings are present: barrel address, two line 1872 frame patent, ALL matching serial numbers ( including cylinder) Mechanically, it is 100% correct on ALL working actions and hammer positions. No mechanical issues. The Walnut grips are original to the revolver and show only normal hand wear, and smooth surface.

The cylinder has the correct matching serial number, but only fragments of any naval engagement scene.

Much of the remaining Factory Nickel can be seen  on the bottom.

PRICE $4,950

 

 

COLT U.S. SINGLE ACTION ARMY .45, "AINSWORTH"  INSPECTED/ ISSUED 1874

There is no question this Ainsworth has been on the raw frontier and shows it's 149 years of age ! Serial No. 1250X was shipped to the Cavalry, maybe San Antonio Depot, on July 29, 1874. Since then, we can only guess the service it has endured. At that time about 322 were shipped, for issue to select cavalry units. 50 to a crate. I found it fascinating that of the approximate 12,000 Ainsworth revolvers produced, ONLY about 1,600 + or- are accounted for in collections! That means in any condition, not just all original. This Ainsworth , excluding the barrel length, is ALL original. It has ALL the parts it left Hartford with, no replacements. The barrel, in the day ( late 1800's) was re-sighted and shortened to Six Inches, and shows appropriate matching wear. ALL Serial Numbers are matching, TG, BS, Frame, cylinder, and barrel, even faded in the one piece Walnut grip channel. Many features to the EARLY SAA's are present: Italic Barrel Address, 1st style ejector housing, long knurled face hammer , the 1872 two line frame patent ,bulls eye ejector head and Inspector marks.  Regarding Ainsworth Inspector markings: There are only two visible ones present, one on the trigger guard below serial number and one on the back strap behind trigger notch. This Ainsworth saw HARD use on the Frontier. Even the U.S. ( note: the early smaller size US ) is worn where the S is barely visible, while the U is definitively there. This Colt saw , as I said, unusual hard wear, even the Italic barrel address is hard worn, BUT visible.

These are the original factory one piece Walnut grips, as in the channel and barely visible is the serial Number. They show years and years of hand wear, as the wood is rounded on the edges. Most IMPORTANT: the working action functions correctly. It half cocks for loading/unloading, advances the cylinder each time pulled to the rear, the cylinder aligns with the chamber and locks, ready to fire. Incredible for 149 years ! By virtue of it's early production for the U.S. and the earliest Inspector it is a HIGHLY desirable Colt, in any form, and this one is 100% authentic, Remember only 1,600 of about 12,000 are known to exist today !

PRICE $7,650

SOME ORIGINAL BLUE REMAINS IN SEVERAL FLUTES

 

             NEVADA/SILVER

             1888

A COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY ,45, with a HISTORY

This Colt Single Action has a story, and it displays part of that story in Nevada. Serial No.12784X is a Colt that was carried by a proud owner from Eureka Nevada in 1888. Currently it is a soft-medium gray finish, with traces of some darkening patina. The dark areas appear on the frame, and easily could be remnants of case color. All factory applied markings are present: barrel address, frame patents, matching serial numbers. ALL the parts are original to the Single Action, except the Nevada Silver accented Pearl Grips. They would have been added by the owner, wanting to show some embellishment to his Colt.

The right grip is decorated with the history of Nevada, SILVER! It has a 1/2 inch wide semi-diagonal stripe, with a 5 point Star below, and a 6 Point Star above. Both grips are original Pearl, with  the color and iridescence of old pearl. Why not ? Eureka, Nevada was a Silver Boom town, like Tombstone or any other. Beginning in the 1860's and going strong until the late 1890's when some of the silver mines played out. Gambling it seem was always inherent to Nevada and was unregulated. Along with the sport came the men that followed strikes and took advantage of the semi lawless boom towns. One such establishment in Eureka was the "Opera House". Like any glamorous Colt Single story comes with ! This Colt was owned by an individual who was considered a " man to reckon with" One evening engaging in a high stakes poker game, it went into the pot. He busted out ! then this Colt stayed in Eureka until the 1940's  It traveled after that and remained in one collectors possession for more than 25+ years, before being offered to another. The old Single Action exhibits true Western Frontier heritage, with Nevada Silver on the Grip. PRICE $ 4,850

 

Currently, the working actions are perfect ! It, safety cocks, 1/2 cocks. full cocks, the cylinder rotates, locks tight into position, and the hammer releases to fire, NO mechanical problems here !

 

EARLY, 1870's TO 1880's TWO LOOP HOLSTER , FOR LONG BARREL COLT .....ETC.....

This is a very unique Holster. As it exhibits the early Slim Jim style Holster, folded over into a wide Skirt and under two loops ! Very much a transitional holster from Slim Jims to the Over the Cartridge Belt Loop Holster. It remains in very good condition, with no damage or broken stitching.  It is a dark brown color , and not brittle.

PRICE $750

COLT 1860 US .44 ARMY REVOLVER...SPRINGFIELD ARSENAL 1868-1869...PLAINS INDIAN WAR REVOLVER..9th OR 10th CAVALRY...RARE/HISTORIC

This is without doubt a survivor and participant of the Indian Wars of the Great Plains, @ 1869-1874. During the Civil War, all the energy, arms and equipment went to the great Army fighting back East. While on the Western Frontier troops were depleted and in fact some Forts closed, even abandoned, troops going East. The Indians took great advantage of this, with no real opposition raids and battles escalated, most ending favorably for the Plains tribes. At the end of the Civil War, another factor took place, the ex-Slaves who enlisted in the Army reviewed the situation and many, many stayed in the Army. It provided a living and money for families, not to mention a supply of food and clothing. These two units became the 9th and 10th Cavalry units. The problem out west from 1861-1865 was weaponry, there was an assortment of hand guns in service, all of questionable condition and power. the Ordnance Department immediately took action, gathered up many used 1860 revolvers and sent them to Springfield Arsenal for refurbishing. Like the Artillery Model which followed some 30 years later, serial number integrity was ceased in favor of speed. Sometimes referred to as "Mixed Number" 1860's they ALL had a large deeply stamped US on the front of the trigger guard below a serial number. They immediately went west and were issued, and the Indian Wars campaign began ! Historical Footnote: In the 2009 Issue of Gun Report and article appeared about these unique 1860 revolvers. In 1934 one was found in the Yellowstone area. This was the area where the 7th Cavalry, and Custer were assigned to guard the Railroad Survey party. This took place in late 1872, early 1873. So, even a few went to the 7th, as issued or perhaps an Indian recovery and use. Serial Numbers range from 100904 on Frame, 85257 on Trigger Guard, portions of 136 ( maybe 121136) on barrel and maybe 7105 on cylinder. The entire barrel address is correct and present. The mechanics are PERFECT on ALL working action. For this 1860 and it's history this is a very good condition example ! Some blue present but mostly a soft gray/blue patina with some plum traces. The brass is all original, aged patina ! The grips are surprisingly fine condition with NO damage, just handling use. This is a FABULOUS piece of Western History of the Indian Plains wars following the Civil War, and into the early 1870's PRIOR to the Colt SAA !

No question, this 1860 was a participant in the westward struggle, and is a rare collectors item.

PRICE $4,100 SOLD / HOLD

 

Besides the mixed serial numbers of the 1860, the refurbishing ( new finish) most to all cylinder scene disappeared, frame patents disappeared or were very thin. FUNCTION was the purpose of the 1860 .44, new finish and get it West !

The cylinder has portions of a Serial Number present, but the Colt Factory Patent markings on the cylinder can still be seen.

1st MODEL, SHORT FLUTE, EXTERNAL STOP BOLT NOTCHES, .22 NEW LINE, FACTORY ENGRAVED, IVORY GRIPS  @ 1874

This Colt New Line .22 is early in production, as it has the short fluted cylinder, and external bolt notches. The ones after 16,000 have the long fluted cylinder and no exposed bolt stop notches. Serial No. 908X would have been manufactured in 1874 and was Factory Engraved. It has the 2-1/4 inch flat side barrel with the acid etched panel on the left side of barrel, Colt New 22. Approximately it has about 97% of the original factory nickel finish, the only loss being at the face of the cylinder caused by firing. ALL factory applied markings: barrel address, caliber marking on frame and serial number is very clear and present. The New Line is further enhanced by original factory Ivory grips, numbered to the revolver. The grips have NO damage and a perfect antique Ivory patina.

The barrel flat has a 100% acid etched panel, COLT NEW 22.

All the factory engraving is clear present and easily seen, still very sharp and present. The working action is fine except the bolt stop spring is weak, otherwise it cocks, indexes and locks tight for firing.

These New Lines saw hard use and in 1877 Colt discontinued the .22 due to stiff competition. Therefore this .22 Factory Engraved New Line is in miraculous condition being 147 years of age !

PRICE $1,850

 

VERY SCARCE CONFIGURATION !

LISTED IN DON WILKERSON'S BOOK on 1878'S , AS ONLY 65 EVER MANUFACTURED !

COLT MODEL 1878 DA, in32/20 CALIBER with 5-1/2 INCH BARREL...

This Model 1878 is among the rarities of big frame Colts, as it is a 32/20 caliber, and with a 5-1/2 inch barrel. As stated above, in Wilkerson's Book on '78's only 65 were ever manufactured in this configuration and caliber. I have not seen the other 64 and never will, but I will say, this is PROBABLY the top 1 or 2 in condition. It has about 95-96% of the original bright factory nickel plate finish, and almost ALL the fire blue on the hammer, trigger and screw heads. A very attractive contrast of colors.

close up of blued hammer

close up of blued trigger on Colt DA 1878

ALL factory applied markings are present, barrel address, caliber, serial numbers etc.... Serial No. 4845X has a PERFECT working action, both on Single Action, and Double Action modes.

right side view of Colt DA 1878 with all markings present

PRICE $ 3,250

Colt Model 1878 DA 32/20 caliber with 5-1/2 inch barrel

95-96% original bright factory nickel finish and fire blue on hammer, trigger,screw heads

top of Colt 1878 DA 5-1/2" barrel

perfect condition checkered hard rubber grips with logo

PERFECT CONDITION CHECKERED HARD RUBBER GRIPS WITH LOGO.

Colt DA 1878 closeup

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DECEMBER 31, 2023

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