Manufactured circa 1868. This revolver features the late percussion vine scroll engraving used by Colt from about 1861-1870. This engraving was probably executed by Gustave Young or Georg Sterzing. Both Young and Sterzing were Colt factory engravers during this period and had very similar styles. The vine scroll engraving featured detailed Germanic scrollwork but lacked the punch-dot background that was typical of Colt factory engraving executed prior to the Civil War. This revolver is illustrated and described on page 254 of "The Colt Engraving Book, Volume One" by R.L. Wilson. A block letter "E," which indicates components designated by Colt for engraving or special finish, is stamped above or below the serial number on the barrel lug, frame, trigger guard and back strap. The flawlessly executed scrollwork covers the sides of the barrel lug and upper barrel flats, ends of the wedge, sides of the loading lever, bottom and sides of the trigger guard, frame and recoil shields and back strap. The sides and top of the hammer are engraved with scrollwork and a wolf head motif. The barrel legend is enclosed in a panel with scallop and dot borders with a scrollwork flourish at the muzzle end. "COLTS/PATENT" is engraved in an arch on the left side of the frame. The top of the barrel is stamped "ADDRESS COL. SAML COLT NEW-YORK U.S. AMERICA." The cylinder has the Stagecoach Holdup scene and "COLTS PATENT". "31 CAL" is stamped on the left rear trigger guard bow. The full serial number is on the barrel lug, frame, trigger guard and back strap. The partial serial number "559" is on the loading lever. The cylinder has the partial serial number "9559". The rosewood, French fitted, brass bound case is lined with purple velvet. A plate in the center of the lid is engraved with the monogram "GLL". The case contains: a 250 count tin of Eley percussion caps with green paper label, L-shaped combination screwdriver/nipple wrench, brass dual cavity bullet mold marked "COLTS/PATENT" on the top of the blocks and a "W" Colt inspection mark, key, assorted lead .31 caliber balls and bottle shaped powder flask with fixed charger and two bullet compartments in the bottom.
Excellent. This revolver is all original. The barrel and cylinder retain 95% plus of the bright original high polish blue finish with scattered minor handling marks. The lever, frame and hammer have 97% plus vivid original case colors. The frame screws and trigger retain most of the nitre blue finish. 60% of the delicate, original silver plating is present on the trigger guard and back strap. The highly figured walnut grip is excellent and retains nearly all of the original piano finish. The case exterior is in fine overall condition with a few insignificant scratches and handling marks and two brass corners missing. The fine original lining has faded and has minor tears from contact with the revolver hammer and brass cone front sight. This is an excellent, well-documented example of a factory cased Model 1849 Revolver with the distinctive vine scroll engraving used by Colt on late percussion revolvers.
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