Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1249: Exceptional and Rare Colt Paterson Model 1839 Shotgun

Auction Date: September 8, 2018

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $75,000 - $125,000

Exceptional and Rare Colt Paterson Model 1839 Shotgun

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: Paterson
Type: Shotgun
Gauge: 16 gauge
Barrel: 32 Inch
Finish: blue/brown
Stock: varnished walnut
Item Views: 4271
Item Interest: Average
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 104
Class: Antique

This is an exceptional original example of a Colt Model 1839 Revolving Shotgun that was manufactured at Samuel Colt's Paterson, New Jersey, factory c. 1839-1841. The total production of the Model 1839 Shotgun is estimated to be approximately 225 guns. The shotgun has a round,16 gauge barrel, massive, six-shot, round shoulder cylinder, flared recoil shield, steel scroll trigger guard and crescent steel buttplate. The barrel has a steel pin front sight. The rear sight has been removed and the dove-tail filled with a fitted lead blank. The barrel is Damascus, the cylinder, recoil shield and tang are blued and the hammer, frame, trigger guard and buttplate are casehardened. The stock is straight grain American walnut with a varnish finish. The cylinder has an elaborate roll-engraved scene that features three panels depicting: (1) a Native American hunter, (2) an American Eagle with shield and (3) a deer hunting scene. The right side of the barrel lug is roll-stamped: "-Patent Arms M'g. Co. Paterson, N.J. - Colt's Pt.-" with the 'snake and star' motif at either end. The serial number is visible on: (1) the wedge, (2) rear face of the barrel lug, (3) cylinder turning ring, (4) face of the recoil shield, and (5) toe of the buttplate. The Colt Model 1839 Shotgun is one of the rarest Colt longarms. Examples are rarely offered for sale.

Rating Definition:

Exceptionally fine. This rare revolving Colt Model 1839 Paterson shotgun is all original. The cylinder has 85% plus of the original high polish blue finish, with limited high point wear. The elaborate cylinder scene is lightly engraved but nearly all intact. The percussion nipples are free from flash pitting. The receiver/recoil shield and tang have 70% of the high polish blue finish. The case colors on the hammer, trigger guard, lower tang and buttplate have aged to a smooth, silver-gray with scattered age spotting. The Damascus pattern on the barrel has silvered with fading finish on the muzzle end and stronger finish toward the breech. The barrel lug has a smooth silver-gray patina with scattered age spotting and sharp Colt legend. The stock is in fine good overall condition with nearly all of the varnish finish intact; wear is limited to a few scattered and insignificant handling marks. The original rear sight has been removed; the blank in the dovetail appears to be a period alteration. The action is crisp and fully functional. This is an exceptional example of one of the rarest Colt longarms. Provenance: Robert M. Lee Collection.

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