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Auction Date: December 5, 2014

Lot 1273: Colt - Paterson

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Exceptionally Rare Squareback Colt Texas Holster Model No. 5 Paterson Revolver with a More Astonishing, Rare, Original and Significant Paterson Holster
Estimated Price: $150,000 - $225,000
Item Views 541 Bid Activity Average
Serial #Colt - Paterson ManufacturerColt ModelPaterson
TypeRevolver Gauge36 Percussion Catalog Page114
Barrel9 Inch FinishBlue GripWalnut
Stock ClassAntique RatingSee Condition
DescriptionExtremely rare and desirable Colt No. 5 Holster Model revolver or Texas Model Paterson revolver. The revolver has an octagon, 36 caliber, 9 inch barrel, five-shot cylinder and varnished walnut grips. This is an early unmodified type revolver with square shoulders on the cylinder and blued long barrel and frame. The top of the barrel flat is marked in script: - "Patent Arms M'g. Co. Paterson". N.J.-Colt's Pt. - " reading toward the muzzle. The cylinder is decorated with the roll-engraved stagecoach holdup scene. The revolver serial number "408" is visible on the bottom of the wedge, the breech end of the barrel, the breech end of the cylinder, the cylinder pin, trigger, bottom of the frame plate and the heel of the left grip. All of the visible serial numbers match. The Texas Model Paterson revolver is the most sought-after of all Colt Paterson revolvers. Total production was approximately 1000 revolvers manufactured between 1838-1840. The Navy of the Republic of Texas purchased 180 Colt No. 5 Paterson revolvers in 1839; several of these revolvers were subsequently issued to the Texas Rangers led by Jack Hays. The U.S. Navy purchased 150 No. 5 revolvers in 1841. An additional 50 revolvers were purchased by the Ordnance Department in 1845, inspected by William A. Thornton and stamped with his "WAT" final inspection mark on the barrel lug. The No. 5 Patterson revolvers were a functional design that saw hard use on the frontier. An estimated 150 examples of the No. 5 Paterson revolver exist today. Accompanying this lot is a letter of documentation from noted Paterson/Walker authority Tom Seymour dated April 3, 1993. It is as follows: To Whom It May Concern: I have carefully examined the 9" "Texas" Colt Paterson, s/n #408, .36 cal. Percussion, 5 shot revolver. #408 appears on various main parts: the end of the barrel lug; frame; turning ring at base of cylinder pin; cylinder; wedge; and left grip. Much original blue finish remains on the 9" barrel as well as frame and back strap. The butt screw is a possible replacement. The muzzle end of the barrel has apparently been polished down slightly to remove rust. (Note: The length is actually 8-7/8" not 9".) The original grips, which show much original varnish finish, have survived in very fine condition with only one minor repair to rear tip of left grip. The base of the left grip is marked "408". The barrel marking "* Patent Arms M'g. Co. Paterson, N.J. - Colt's Pt. *" is clear and original. The cylinder "Stagecoach Holdup" scene and "Colt" marking is also clear and original. "408" is stamped on rear of cylinder. The rear of the cylinder is square (and not rounded). In general, the gun has survived in very nice original condition with overall approximately 50% original blue finish remaining, however, some discoloration and light pitting has developed due to accumulation of surface rust which has started to set in on portions of the metal surfaces. I recommend the surface rust be carefully removed and the exposed parts oiled using a high quality gun oil by an experienced antique firearms restorer/gunsmith to prevent further deterioration. Conclusion: In my opinion, this rare antique Colt firearm (circa 1839-40) 9" "Texas" Paterson, s/n #408 is an original specimen that has survived in remarkable good condition as noted above. Tom Seymour, This No. 5 Paterson Revolver would be the centerpiece of the most advanced Colt collection. Accompanied by an unprecedented and remarkably rare original 9" Texas Paterson holster.

ConditionFine. The revolver retains nearly 50% of the bright original blue finish on the barrel and the frame. The metal surfaces have scattered small patches of surface rust and some light pitting. There is pitting on the right recoil shield, the sides of the hammer, one cylinder chamber and the right side of the barrel below the front sight. The barrel markings are sharp and the roll-engraved cylinder scene is all intact. The walnut grips are in very fine condition and retain most of the original varnished finish. There is a small, barely noticeable repair on the rear tip of the left grip. The action is crisp, tight, and fully functional. This is an outstanding example of an extremely rare and very desirable Colt No. 5 Paterson revolver in the near impossible to obtain unaltered squareback cylinder variation with long barrel. This is the icon of all Colts ranking equal to (if not above) the Walker Colt. This specific revolver is of the right configuration and in the right condition to make any collection become noteworthy. The holster is excellent for its age and use exhibiting only minor age cracks and scratches.
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