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Auction Date: September 7, 2012

Lot 1168: Excellent Aston Contract U.S. Model 1842 Percussion Pistol

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Excellent Aston Contract U.S. Model 1842 Percussion Pistol
Estimated Price: $5,500 - $8,000
Item Views 219 Bid Activity Average
Serial #Excellent Aston Contract U.S. Model 1842 Percussion Pistol ManufacturerAston H Pistols Model1842
TypePistol Gauge54 Percussion Catalog Page58
Barrel8 1/2 Inch Round FinishBright Grip
Stockwalnut ClassAntique RatingSee Condition
DescriptionThis exceptional U.S. Model 1842 Percussion Pistol was manufactured by Henry Aston of Middletown, Connecticut, in 1850. Henry Aston manufactured approximately 24,000 Model 1842 pistols between 1846 and 1850 for the U.S. Government. The pistol has a round smoothbore barrel with brass front sight blade and swivel mounted button head ramrod. The lock and barrel are National Armory Bright. The distinctive combination barrel band/side plate, trigger guard, buttcap and back strap are brass. The stock is oil-finished black walnut. The lock plate has the first style Aston markings which consist of "U.S/H.ASTON" roll-stamped in two lines in front of the hammer and "MIDDTN/CONN/1850" stamped vertically behind the hammer. The barrel tang is dated "1850". The top of the barrel is roll-stamped with the property, final inspection and proof marks "U.S./GW/P". The Ordnance sub-inspector's initials "JH" are stamped on the left barrel flat just above the edge of the stock. Ordnance sub-inspection marks consisting of single "W" or "H" are visible on all major components. An Ordnance final inspection mark which consists of the script initials "JH" in an oval is stamped on the left stock flat. The Model 1842 Percussion Pistol was the last single shot percussion handgun to see service with the U.S. Army. Model 1842 Pistols saw extensive use during the Mexican War and were still in limited use at the start of the Civil War. The Model 1842 Percussion Pistol was a well-designed, robust, weapon that represented the final development of the single shot "horse pistol".

ConditionExcellent. The pistol is in un-issued condition and retains the original, National Armory Bright finish on the barrel, ramrod, lock and tang. The metal has scattered traces of age discoloration but no service wear. The percussion nipple and bolster have no flash pitting. All of the markings on the barrel, tang and lock plate are crisp. The brass furniture has an attractive patina with a few scattered and very minor storage marks. The stock is also in excellent condition with sharp edges. Wear is limited to some very minor storage marks. The final inspection mark stamped on the left flat is very sharp. The action is tight and functions perfectly. This an exceptional example of an important primary issue U.S. martial handgun.
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