Colts Page 4

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This Colt is testimony to the fact that no matter how dedicated to perfection and exactness a company may be , they are made of imperfect human employees ! Colt Serial No. 148747 is a human assembly error. The frame is 148747 while all other numbers are 148647 ! Note: # 148647 is a .45 caliber revolver. While assembling this Colt a simple number error was made. I contacted Colt, their opinion was if it was detected, it was allowed to ship, as it certainly did not effect function. This Colt has not been tinkered with and exhibits ALL original togetherness since day one !!! ALL factory applied markings are present and legible: barrel caliber, serial numbers, frame patents IMPORTANT: the working actions are perfect: cocking, locking, cylinder rotation and alignment, releasing to fire. The overall finish today is a dark gray patina, and the surface shows some peppering and minor distress. Typical of a south Texas Colt.  The Eagle hard rubber grips are extremely worn ! and coincides with the use the revolver has had in Texas.

So here we have a small factory irregularity of human error, and long term use in Houston Texas. However, it is still a BLACK POWDER Single Action with a Factory Letter and a little story to tell.

PRICE $ 2,875


This is an incredible "package" of the Old Express days, and shipping by Express, both Holster, Colt and markings. THIS Colt has been in a vault for 40 plus years, just now being listed for sale. Starting with the Messenger Belt : First, it is made from Alligator Hide, and lined with a chamois material. It is SPECIFICALLY for this revolver, in size and depth. The Belt is trimmed in shiny black leather around all the multiple pockets and holster. The Alligator leather remains flexible and relatively soft. The inside of the belt is marked to match the Colt 1878 revolver.

The Colt Model of 1878 in .45 caliber, is an EARLY production Model. It has what is called the "Fat Grip", a slightly larger grip than the rest of the total production. Being found on about the first 5,000 revolvers. This 1878, Serial No. 524X is a "Fat Grip". with the checkered hard rubber grips. The barrel was shortened to 2-7/8 Inches, in the day, more than likely by the Southern Express Messenger, as the belt holster is an EXACT fit to the Colt 1878 !!

 The Back Strap is Property Room marked, by the Property Manager at it's issued location, and 100% authentic and correct.

Southern Express Company was one of the "bigger" companies serving the U.S. in the 19th century. Primarily serving the Southern tier of the U.S. but also connecting with W.F. & Co., American Ex. Adams Express , etc... to be able to ship packages THROUGH OUT the entire U.S. Like ALL the rest, they needed weapons to guard the shipments of goods and valuables against Stage Coach Robbers and Train Robbers, even Office Locations ! . ALL Messengers went armed ! This fellow went in style, a Money Style belt, made from Alligator and a DA 1878 Colt customized to fit his needs ! This is a RARE opportunity to own a real piece of history, even an Alligator Messenger belt !

PRICE $6,250

The Colt 1878 has about 10-15% of the original factory nickel finish, the balance is an untouched natural light gray patina. The .45 cal marking is still on the trigger guard, but the barrel address is not legible from wear. The checkered hard rubber grips show some wear, but all checkering  is still quite defined and visible, with NO damage. The working actions are 100% correct, on both Single and Double Action Modes. Since 1878, still 100% functional each and every time called upon. You know this "outfit" saw action, as not one Express company didn't fall prey to bandits in the 19th century.

COLT NEW LINE .30 REVOLVER...Scarce Barrel Length, 1-3/4 inch... 1875

The .30 Colt New Line is an interesting chapter in Colt production. It is THE ONLY revolver ever made by Colt in .30 caliber, and ONLY for two years, in a total of only 11,000 units. MOST all had the 2-1/4 inch barrel, VERY few the 1-3/4 inch barrel. Why so short lived ? During this period of arms history many other firms were making the .30 Pocket Pistol. Hopkins & Allen, Hood, Forehand, etc... and ALL sold way ! less expensive than Colt. True to their nature, rather than sacrifice quality, and sell for less, Colt chose to discontinue the .30 New Line. Therefore, one in this elevated level of condition and barrel length is a great rarity and find for the collector. Serial No.485X has 99.9999% of all its original bright nickel Colt factory finish. The highlight colors of blue on the screw heads is present, just slightly dulling.  The bright fire blue on the hammer reverse is still present only slightly darkened. The Rosewood grips still have all their varnish, and show next to no handling dings. The mechanical functions on the working action function 100% correctly, each and every time !

It would be very difficult to improve on this example, excluding engraved or exotic finish, in condition and scarcity.

The "etched" panel is still completely present and vividly seen !

All factory markings clear and present, all matching serial numbers.

PRICE $ 1,850


One of the MOST DIFFICULT  Single Action revolvers for collectors to obtain is a PRE 1898, Antique Bisley ! The very first and few were introduced in early 1896, and sent to England, after all they are named for the Bisley Target Range in England. It wasn't until 1897 that U.S. Commercial Production began to be somewhat substantial and the Bisley became another single action available to buyers. Besides being a scarce model in Black Powder, this one has a Nickel factory finish Another rarity as most to all were blued and case. It also is in .45 Colt caliber, not a lighter weight target caliber. Serial No.17473X was finished with a nickel plating by the Factory. A 123 years later, only about 15%+ of the nickel remains, dominantly found on the barrel, behind recoil shield, and trigger guard. The balance is a very light gray patina. This is good because there is no harsh contrast on the overall finish image.  All parts are factory original, and ALL factory markings are clear and present: Barrel address, barrel legend Bisley Model .45 Colt, frame patents, and ALL matching serial numbers. The screw heads are all crisp and defined, no burring. There are traces of bright blue left on the hammer reverse and trigger. The checkered hard rubber grips, original to the Colt, show everyday hand touching, causing a smooth wear.

left view of hard rubber grip

Mechanically: this Colt operates PERFECTLY, cocks, locks, indexes, fires, all with original precision. This Bisley was a constant companion to someone for many years , seeing HONEST use, NO abuse, therefore works so well today. In review, a Black Powder Antique Bisley is rare indeed due to  limited early production, and then in Nickel finish, also .45 Colt.

PRICE $ 3,750

Point of Interest: Mexican Revolutionary, Pancho Villa, was rarely ever seen without his Colt Bisley, his favorite for fit, and function.


1897 Bisley Colt

factory nickel finish on Colt Black Powder

in .45 Colt caliber

original checkered hard rubber grips worn smooth

all parts factory original on the .45 Bisley

all factory markings are clear and visible

SEPTEMBER 30, 2021


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