Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1201: Historic and Superb Fully Documented Cased Consecutively Seriali

Auction Date: December 8, 2013

Historic and Superb Fully Documented Cased Consecutively Serialized Pair of Colt Single Action Army Revolvers Presented to Standing 40th U.S. President Ronald Reagan with Exquisite Tooled Presentation Holster Rig and Important Gold and Silver Presentation Presidential Belt Buckle

Estimated Price: $150,000 - $250,000

A) Colt Third Generation Single Action Army Revolver Inscribed to President Ronald Reagan

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: Single Action Army
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 45 Long Colt
Barrel: 5 1/2 inch round
Finish: nickel
Grip: plastic
Stock:
Item Views: 3240
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 100
Class: Modern Handgun
Description:

Presented here is a unique opportunity to acquire a cased set of consecutively serialized Colt Third Generation Single Action Army Revolvers presented to President Ronald Reagan. These revolvers were presented to President Reagan by famed quick draw artist and Hollywood firearm technical advisor Arvo Ojala and come with a fantastic Arvo Ojala presentation holster rig. The back strap is inscribed "PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN/PRESENTED BY ARVO OJALA". The revolvers are documented by two official letters. The first letter is from Colt Vice President D.W. Davis to Arvo Ojala and is dated March 12, 1981. The letter is on Colt stationary and lists the revolvers by serial number as being presented to President Reagan. Colt Vice President Davis states, "I was pleased to learn that you were able to meet with President Reagan and present him with the two Single Action .45's (serial numbers 44102 and 44103) you ordered from us. It is an honor to Colt that President Reagan accepted these guns from you." The second letter is from President Reagan to Arvo Ojala and is dated August 31, 1981. The letter is on Reagan White House stationary, confirms that the Colt holster rig was presented to President Reagan by Arvo Ojala and has the President's signature. The President states, "There are no words to properly express my appreciation for the magnificent gift of the belt, holsters and pistols so beautifully displayed in that case. I know you described what you were planning, but I had no idea it would be so spectacular and so handsome." The letters are in a matted frame along with a photograph of Reagan wearing a U.S. Deputy Marshall uniform from his Hollywood days. The barrel of the revolver has the one line Hartford address on top and "COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY .45" on the left side. The left side of the frame has the two line, three patent date marking followed by the Rampant Colt. The trigger guard is marked with the letters "K" and "Q" and the Colt triangle factory proof. The grips are numbered to the gun and are checkered with a Rampant Colt inside an oval at the top and a federal eagle at the bottom. The wooden case holds both revolvers and the top of the lid has a Colt Custom Shop medallion and a presentation plaque that reads, "PRESIDENT/RONALD REAGAN/COLT SA ARMY .45/SERIAL No.s 44102 & 44103/PRESENTED BY/ARVO OJALA". The magnificent holster rig has full coverage of an elaborate floral tooled pattern. The belt has 22 cartridge loops which hold 22 dummy cartridges with the head stamp "BHA 45 COLT". The back of the belt is tooled with "PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN" in large letters on a textured background. The scroll engraved oval belt buckle has a gold engraved U.S. Presidential seal in the center and "PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN" in raised gold lettering. The back of the buckle is signed "DESIGNED BY/ARVO OJALA/JANUARY 1981". The holster have an oval strap buckle with a scroll engraving that matches the belt buckle. The Arvo Ojala maker marking is on the back of both holsters. Arvo Ojala (1920-2005) was a master of the quick draw who drew the interest of Hollywood during the heyday of the Western. Beginning in the 1950s with such movies as "River of No Return", "The Big Country" and "Rio Bravo" and through the more recent popcorn flicks like "Silverado", "Back to the Future Part III" and "The Three Amigos", Hollywood relied on Ojala's quick draw coaching for some of its biggest stars and patented designed holsters. He also worked on television productions with his most famous role in front of the camera being that of the unnamed man shot by Marshal Matt Dillon in the opening sequences of America's longest-running prime time television drama "Gunsmoke" (1955-1975). Working in Hollywood allowed Arvo Ojala to befriend numerous actors, including Ronald Reagan, the future 40th President of the United States (1981-1989). Reagan's first screen credit was the starring role in the 1937 movie "Love Is on the Air" and would go on to star in such films as "Dark Victory", "Knute Rockne, All American", "Bedtime for Bonzo" and "Kings Row" before his acting career came to an end in 1965. He would go on to be the Governor of California from 1967-1975. He would lose the 1976 Republican presidential nomination, but later received the 1980 Republican presidential nomination and was elected President in 1981 to serve two terms. Despite the debate surrounding the Reagan presidency, most scholars have agreed that Reagan was the most influential president since FDR who rehabilitated conservatism, revived faith in the presidency and contributed to victory in the Cold War. Comes with a display case that presents both revolvers, belt buckle and holster rig. The case is lined in cowhide and has a leather presentation plaque.

Rating Definition:

Excellent. The revolver retains 98% original nickel finish showing some minor flaking on the grip straps and a light cylinder drag line. Some minor oxidation is present under the grip panels. The grips are excellent with crisp checkering. Mechanically excellent. The case is near excellent with some minor handling/storage marks with some high spot wear in the lining. The holster rig is excellent.



B) Colt Third Generation Single Action Army Revolver Inscribed to President Ronald Reagan

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: Single Action Army
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 45 Long Colt
Barrel: 5 1/2 inch round
Finish: nickel
Grip: plastic
Stock:
Item Views: 3240
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 100
Class: Modern Handgun
Description:

As described in "A", but with the grip straps and grip panels having a serial number (SA44104) that is one digit off the frame serial number (SA44103), likely a Colt factory error.

Rating Definition:

Excellent. The revolver retains 99% original nickel finish showing extremely limited light flaking on the cylinder and a light cylinder drag line. The grips are excellent with crisp checkering. Mechanically excellent. A full documented, very exquisite holster rig with presentation Colt Single Action Army Revolvers presented to President Ronald Reagan by famed leather maker Arvo Ojala.



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