Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1095: Factory Engraved Colt Model 1849 Pocket Revolver

Auction Date: June 6, 2020

Gustave Young Factory "Presentation Grade" Engraved Colt Model 1849 Pocket Percussion Revolver

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $5,500 - $8,500

Gustave Young Factory "Presentation Grade" Engraved Colt Model 1849 Pocket Percussion Revolver

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: 1849
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 31 percussion
Barrel: 5 inch octagon
Finish: blue/silver
Grip: relief carved antique ivory
Item Views: 1781
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 59
Class: Antique

This Colt factory engraved Model 1849 Pocket revolver was manufactured in 1856. The revolver has a blued barrel, silver plated loading lever, cylinder, trigger guard and back strap and casehardened frame and hammer. Scroll engraving on a punch dot background by Master Engraver Gustave Young covers about 75% of the revolver. The hammer is engraved with a wolf head motif, and has six dots indicating six days of engraving. Unusual features of this engraving include a stylized bird's head on the right side of the frame below the recoil shield and an animal head on the left side of the barrel lug. The top of the barrel is engraved "SAML COLT" in Old English style characters surrounded by engraved flourishes. "COLT'S PATENT" is hand engraved in a panel on the left side of the frame. An apostrophe is stamped below the serial number on the frame, trigger guard and back strap indicating that the revolver was designated to receive engraving. The revolver is fitted with relief carved grips with the Mexican eagle and snake in an oval on the right side. The cylinder is roll-engraved with the standard Colt stage holdup scene. The full serial number is located on the barrel, trigger guard, frame, back strap and cylinder. The partial serial number, "13486" is stamped on the underside of the wedge, and "3486" is stamped on the cylinder arbor pin and loading lever. All of the serial numbers match. This revolver is pictured in a 1945 Gimbel Brothers catalog in this same condition and configuration.

Rating Definition:

Very good. 60% of the silver plated finish remains on the grip straps. The barrel has scattered surface discoloration and some light pitting on the undecorated surfaces ahead of the lug. The replated cylinder retains half of the hold up scene; there is flash pitting on the front and rear face, and the safety pins are battered (loading lever is also period replated). Surfaces of the frame, loading lever, trigger guard, hammer and back strap are smooth. The flawlessly executed engraving remains deep and sharp. One of the pins from the front of the frame is absent. The otherwise fine grips have repaired chips on both sides at the junction of the frame, back strap and trigger guard. The relief carved eagle and snake motif is skillfully executed, but the overall fit of the grips suggests they were added to the revolver after it left the Colt factory. There are minor hairline cracks in both sides of the butt. The action is crisp and fully functional. This is a very attractive revolver with early style Germanic scroll engraving by the master, Gustave Young.

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