Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 3173: Colt 1862 Police Revolver 36 percussion

Auction Date: April 20, 2012

Rare Documented Colt Model 1862 Police Revolver with L.D. Nimschke Engraving and Magnificent Tiffany American Eagle Grips Published in The Book of Colt Engraving

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $35,000 - $65,000

Rare Documented Colt Model 1862 Police Revolver with L.D. Nimschke Engraving and Magnificent Tiffany American Eagle Grips Published in The Book of Colt Engraving

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: 1862 Police
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 36 percussion
Barrel: 6 1/2 inch round
Finish: silver-plated
Grip: silver
Stock:
Item Views: 2635
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 164
Class: Antique
Description:

This extraordinary engraved, Tiffany gripped Colt Model 1862 Police revolver was manufactured in 1864. The revolver is factory engraved with Germanic scrollwork on a punch-dot background by master engraver L.D. Nimschke and has a cast bronze Tiffany grips with the distinctive and rarely encountered American Eagle motif. This style of grip is illustrated in the 1864 Schuyler, Hartley and Graham catalogue on a Colt Model 1862 revolver. This revolver is one of the two Model 1862 Police revolvers pictured on page 169 of THE BOOK OF COLT ENGRAVING by Colt expert R. L. Wilson. Included with the revolver is a three-page letter from Wilson that describes the pistol. In this letter, Wilson states that this revolver was one of a pair which were the only Colt Model 1862 Police revolvers known to him with American Eagle style Tiffany grips. The revolver has a silver-plated finish on the barrel, loading lever, cylinder, frame and hammer, trigger guard and Tiffany grip. A "P" indicating plating or special finish is stamped below the serial number on the barrel lug, frame and trigger guard. The top of the barrel is roll-stamped with the legend: "ADDRESS COL SAML COLT NEW-YORK U.S. AMERICA" in one line. "COLTS/PATENT" is located in an engraved panel on the left side of the frame. "PAT.SEPT.10th 1850" is stamped in one cylinder flute. The full serial number, "23641" is stamped on the bottom of the barrel lug, frame, trigger guard and the rear face of the cylinder. The arbor pin is stamped with the partial serial number "3641". The last two digits of the serial number "41" are stamped on the bottom of the grip beneath the buttcap. The non-matching wedge is numbered "3738".

Rating Definition:

Fine. The intricate Germanic scroll-work is crisp. The highly detailed Tiffany grip remains in very fine condition. traces of the original silver-plated finish are present in protected areas of the revolver. The R.L Wilson letter describes the condition of this revolver as being in excellent overall condition with traces of the gold and silver-plated finish and most of the silver remaining on the Tiffany grips. Wilson states that: "The quality of the grips is excellent, showing the sharp, crisp Victorian quality of their original manufacture". The Wilson letter concludes that this Tiffany-Gripped Colt Model 1862 Police revolver is an important example of American gunmaking and firearms artistry from the Civil War period and is worthy of the finest private or museum arms collection, or significant collection of American decorative arts. Writer agrees with this analysis wholeheartedly!



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