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SMITH & WESSON, 1st MODEL AMERICAN .44 , "OIL HOLE" VARIATION, EARLY, 3 DIGIT SERIAL NUMBER

This was a SIGNIFICANT revolver for the firm of S&W. It represented the FIRST top break .44 caliber revolver ever produced by the company. They wanted to part of the frontier expansion and produce a large caliber heavy revolver. It had the 8 inch barrel, a slightly curved grip, and quick loading and unloading. It received immediate success, even a 1,000 piece contract from the Government for Cavalry usage. It was immensely popular on the civilian market, wit MANY high profile westerners using one. Such as Cole Younger, Belle Star, Texas Jack Omohundro, Buffalo Bill, Dallas Stoudenmire and  yes even Wyatt Earp owned one. This 1st American is VERY early having a 3 digit serial number, 42X. ALL parts are the original parts to this American. ALL factory applied markings are present: barrel address & patents, serial numbers and assembly numbers, plus they are all matching. The smooth Walnut grips are numbered to the American and have a fine antique luster, with just a slight amount of wood damage at the bottom of one grip only.

This was a seriously important revolver to the company and the westward expansion and it's cast of characters. PRICE $4,650

The Oil Hole can be clearly seen in front of the barrel pivot, on the flat of the barrel/extractor.

....FACTORY SPECIAL ORDER ... ...with Factory Information...ONLY ONE KNOWN TO EXIST with 7-1/2 inch Barrel....

1st MODEL, S&W Double Action "FRONTIER MODEL", 44/40 , @ 1880's

This revolver, Serial No.1421X has a very UNIQUE feature, it has a 7-1/2 inch barrel ! The longest standard factory length on this Model was 6-1/2 inches. Factory information, according to Mr. Roy Jinks, S&W Historian states: This was in fact a Special Order revolver, and was shipped to Iver-Johnson Sporting Goods Company, Boston, Massachusetts. A One Only shipment.  The Frontier Double Action  represented the company progress to get into the 44/40 market, a departure from their mainstay 44 Russian cartridge revolvers. This DA Frontier has about 60% of all the original factory nickel plating, the balance is a soft gray patina, blending very well preventing any harsh contrast. It's appearance is much stronger. The complimenting parts. such as the top latch, and trigger guard have substantial amounts of blue remaining. The trigger and hammer show faded case colors. The grips are original to this revolver, and have the color and fire only 130 years plus, can create. They have no damage, and  the carved Snake & Eagle really compliment the S&W, showing a western frontier theme.

Mechanically, this DA Frontier operates PERFECTLY on single action mode, or double action mode. ALL factory applied markings are present and clearly seen. Being a Special Order, no doubt this was for a very specialized shooter !! Potentially for shipment to Mexico or the American West, as the 7-1/2 inch barrel was popular starting in the 1870's. PRICE $4,250

 

 

 

The original Carved Pearl grips have fabulous colors brought on by more than 140 years of age, and are carved into a Mexican Eagle and Snake motif, very western indeed !

An honest statement  would be , this is so rare. you more than likely will NEVER see another!

 

2nd MODEL, SMITH & WESSON AMERICAN.44....RARE... FACTORY BARREL LENGTH, IVORY GRIPS

Serial No. 3005X, has an EXTREMELY rare factory barrel length. It is a 6-1/2 inch barrel. I would say that 99% of all of this model encountered have the standard barrel length of 8 inches. Although the factory made them in 5-1/2, 6, 6-1/2 and 7 inches. Any of these lengths command a strong premium, but the 6-1/2 inch is the ULTRA rare ! This 2nd American was once full nickel, but the finish has long vacated, leaving a uniform soft gray patina on the revolver. The Ivory grips strongly appear to be factory original to this 2nd model, and if not they were placed there by the selling dealer in 1874.

  You can tell this American was someone's companion, and carried every day. No doubt this was a Frontier Specimen, perhaps accounting  for the special barrel length, as it was easier to use "in action" than the standard 8 inch. Mechanically it operates correctly: breaks open, star ejector rises, snaps back into cylinder, closes tight, cocks, locks, indexes and releases to fire properly. ALL parts are the original factory parts, and ALL factory markings are present. ALL serial numbers match. ALL screw heads are clean and defined no burring. The importance of these S&W revolvers is of the highest magnitude, as they appeared on the Frontier 3 years before Colt's single action, and even by 1874 the date of this revolver, it was the best large frame cartridge revolver on the market. A QUICK loader//un-loader and an accurate shooter in .44.

PRICE $ 2,750

SMITH & WESSON, 2nd MODEL .45 SCHOFIELD, U.S. ISSUE 1877

The 2nd Model perhaps was more meaningful to S&W than the first, as it represented continued Government purchasing and Issue to the Cavalry. The government was pleased with the first model BUT wanted some minor improvements that they felt enhanced their ease of use. Serial No. 740X is a 2nd Model Schofield with the new asked for improvements. The top latch was altered by adding circular areas more easily held onto, making it easier for a trooper to grab and break open the revolver. The other change was the trigger profile. Other than that it was the same as the first model. Once again, it saw total distribution to the Cavalry units, even more so, as the 2nd contract double the amount of the first. This 2nd Schofield has untouched and original patina, as there is no blue remaining. ALL factory markings are present: company address, patent lines, and serial number ( all matching). ALL Military markings are present, land P at the barrel pivot, and the U.S. on the butt. ALL parts are original to the Schofield. The grips show hand wear and use with no cartouche remaining.

U.S. mark on butt of grip

The U.S. on the butt is very faint, but it is still there, perhaps a long time ago, an attempt to remove it took place, but not completely successful. !

Mechanically this 2nd Schofield functions 100% correctly. It breaks open, star ejector rises and falls, it closes and locks tight. Then it cocks, and cylinder locks tight for firing, and triggers release the hammer...perfect action. This 2nd Model would be the last of the Military Schofield's, after this the Army went exclusively with the Colt revolver. One cartridge seemed the best direction. However, civilians found it a wonderful revolver with it's QUICK method to load and unload. Frank James carried one along with many other notable westerners.

close up of left view military Schofield

full view of left side of US schofield

PRICE $ 3,400

S&W 2nd model .45 Schofield U.S. issue 1877

U.S. marked on butt of Schofield No2 model

well worn walnut grips on Schofield

all parts are original to the Schofield

bottom view of U.S. Schofield

top view of well patina Schofield U.S.

 

1870's era UNIQUE HOLSTER FOR THE S&W AMERICAN or OLD, OLD RUSSIAN .44 REVOLVER.

This is an incredibly unique holster in it's construction, and unique for an 1870's holster, as well as the expected design for the time period. It fits the EIGHT inch barrel correctly, only a S&W , as there is NO accommodation for an ejector rod on a barrel. It is ONLY one step beyond the Slim Jim holster of the early 1870's, as it has a 3/4 skirt and VERY narrow. In addition it has the SLANTED loops on the holster.

beautiful basket weave leather holster

This holster has a VERY unique offering ! It has a retaining strap for the revolver. However, the way it is constructed it can be used or not used. I suggest when danger was imminent the strap was unsnapped, BUT when heavy riding  on the range it was left closed to keep the revolver from being dislodged, yeah, even losing it ! This holster was OBVIOUSLY made by a Master Saddler/ Holster maker, for an individual. It is in EXCELLENT condition, a dark chocolate like color, NO broken seams anywhere, and crisp engraving. A holster with very similar work appears in " Packing Iron", but the retaining strap, stands alone ! Below I have holstered an Old, Old Russian, for the visual purpose of seeing this holster with THE correct revolver.

full view of holster for S&W

PRICE $ 650

1870's holster for S&W American or old,old Russian

perfect for 8 inch barrel with slanted loops

NOTE: The retaining strap is integral with the holster !  It is cut from the back, and folded over, then decorated same as the rest of the holster. It could be folded back right into the space it came from, unique !

top retaining strap on holster

back of holster for S&W

SMITH & WESSON, 2nd MODEL, .44 AMERICAN REVOLVER @ 1873

The Model No. 3 , a.k.a. The American .44 Model, really put S&W into the game ! Prior to 1870, the company's only "big frame" revolver was the less than big frame Army No. 2 in .32 rim fire. However in 1870 they geared up and introduced the top break, .44 Models, the American Model in .44 AM, and the Old Old Russian Model in .44R, physically the same except for caliber. QUICKLY followed by the 2nd Model, which made a slight change in the frame, to accommodate the stronger trigger hold pin. This 2nd American, Serial No. 2175X, is in remarkable condition. It has about 95% of all the original nickel plated finish. What is IMPORTANT, it has never been touched ! no cleaning, polishing etc... it has that natural 141 year old luster. ALL assembly numbers are matching, all serial numbers match, and ALL parts are original. Mechanically it operates PERFECTLY, breaking open, closing, cocking, locking and firing , every time ! ALL factory applied markings are present and visible.

Model 2 American full view right side

This Model 2 American was very popular on  the frontier, used by the likes of: Wyatt Earp, "Texas Jack" Omohundro, Dallas Stoudenmire, John Wesley Hardin, Cole Younger, Belle Starr, and so on and so forth....  PRICE $ 3,795

S&W 2nd model .44 American revolver

bottom view of this big frame revolver

95% of all original nickel plated finish

walnut grips in perfect condition

The Walnut Grips are in perfect condition, with a fine antique luster, and are numbers to the revolver.

 

 

 

APRIL 30, 2021

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