These distinctive Confederate handguns were manufactured circa 1861 to 1864, with production estimated at 100 or less, and are almost never seen in this condition. Very well made and based on Samuel Colt's Model 1851 Navy revolvers, manufacture of these revolvers is generally attributed to Augusta Machine Works, but the revolvers are not marked with a maker's name. The Confederate Government owned a factory in Augusta, Georgia, known as the Augusta Machine Works, and "Confederate Handguns" by Albaugh, Benet, and Simmons notes, "We know that this firm engaged in revolver making but have not as yet been able to definitively match the product to the maker." They do however quote multiple local sources as confirming the factory manufactured Colt Model 1851 Navy style revolvers. Today, these guns are now considered as having been made at the Augusta facility and are listed in the Flayderman’s Guide number system as 10-001. They are distinctive to all other Confederate revolvers due to the shape of their grip and back-strap, frame and barrel length and close-tolerance fit and finish. Many consider them to be the highest quality Confederate Revolver ever made. There are two variations of cylinders: six stops and twelve stops, with the twelve stop cylinders such as this example much more difficult to find. Compared to the Colt Navy, these interesting revolvers have noticeably more squared off aspects of the grip frame, and the smooth one piece walnut grip has a distinctive "pinch." As is typical for these revolvers, the only markings found are the serial/assembly number "8" on the loading lever, barrel lug, cylinder, wedge, arbor pin, hammer, frame, grip straps, and in the back strap mortise of the grip. The barrel has a small brass cone front sight, and the hammer has a notch rear sight. It has a "0449" marked copper collection tag.
Extremely sharp and crisp and one of the finest known of its type. The barrel has traces of original blue finish around the wedge, and the steel otherwise displays an exceptionally smooth, light brown patina on the balance. There is surprisingly little oxidation and pitting. There is some wear on the hammer from dry firing, but only the slightest age related wear on the rest of the revolver. The brass grip straps have attractive aged patina overall. The excellent grip has most of the glossy varnish finish, minor edge wear, and showing the slightest shrinkage or shift. Mechanically excellent. Considering the hard service Confederate weapons saw and the immense rarity of these revolvers in particular, this revolver is exceptional. It will be a great addition to any Civil War collection and prove virtually impossible to improve upon.
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