This revolver is one of the early open top, large frame revolvers manufactured by Hopkins & Allen for Merwin, Hulbert & Co. circa the later 1870s. It has the correct early "dished" cylinder and a pair of smooth grips. It has the standard fixed round blade front and frame notch rear sights, a lanyard loop on the butt, and the early three digit serial number on the butt. The cylinder, barrel lug, and left side of the grip frame are numbered "183". The top of the barrel has the one line Merwin, Hulbert & Co. address and patent information, and the Hopkins & Allen address is on the left. The back strap has a crest/seal with a pelican vulning its breast over a "cap of maintenance," U.S. themed shield, and a banner marked "NE CEDE MALIS". This motto comes from Virgil's Aeneid from the longer phrase "Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito" meaning "Do not give in to evils/misfortune but go ever more boldly against it". It has been used by several influential families. It was adopted by the Bronx and thus became the motto of the Bronx borough. The crest's/seal's motifs suggest the revolver was owned by a member of the Order of the Pelican, the Loomis family, or a related institution such as the Loomis Institute (now Loomis-Chaffee School). The Loomis family in the U.S. traces its roots to English immigrants who settled in New England in the 1630s.
Fine. The revolver retains 75% plus of the unpolished original nickel plating with some flaking and minor marks. The finish had a frosted appearance. The grips are fine and have attractive varied tones, some slight age cracks, and some shrinkage. The action is excellent, and the markings are crisp.
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