Rock Island Auction Company
A
B

Lot 1300: Cased Percussion Target Pistols from Schreiber of Barmen

Auction Date: May 15, 2021

Extraordinary Quality Cased Pair of Relief Chiseled, Gold Inlaid, and Raised Relief Carved Percussion Target Pistols from Schreiber of Barmen

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $55,000 - $85,000

A) Percussion Target Pistol

Manufacturer: German
Model: Percussion
Type: Pistol
Gauge: 44
Barrel: 7 7/8 inch octagon
Finish: gold/gray
Grip:
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 807
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 228
Class: Antique
Description:

These elaborate mid-19th century target pistols are clearly the work of a very talented maker or group of artisans. The identity of C. Schreiber of Barmen is unknown. He may have been the retailer of these fine arms rather than their maker. Likewise, the family crest on the wrist escutcheons has not been identified. The lack of coronet suggests the owner was not a member of the German nobility though he was clearly a man of means given the immense quality of this cased pair which would have been worthy of displaying at an exhibition. The locks are signed "C/ SCHREIBER/A BARMEN" on inset gold panels and the lock plates, breech plugs, upper tangs, trigger guards and pommel caps have relief engraved oak leaf style scroll patterns and have gold inlaid borders. The hammer and bolster have bipedal winged dragons with wolf heads with gilt eyes, clawed forelimbs, feathered wings, and trefoil tail tips at the end of their serpentine bodies. They are somewhat reminiscent of the Dacian Dracos. The trigger guard finials have squirrels and birds among the floral designs and scale type patterns on the spurs. The pommel caps have a cross looking warrior with long hair and a lion head on his helmet, possibly referencing Hercules or one of the many figures throughout history, such as Alexander the Great, who adopted the lion head helmet design in reference to him and the Cithaeron and Nemean lions. The stocks have raised relief carved lion heads at the tip of the forends with inlaid bead eyes, silver wedge escutcheons, a coat of arms with a silver figure and gold cock on the wrist escutcheons, and chevron pattern checkering. The swamped, textured Damascus barrels are rifled and have gold bands at the muzzles, dovetailed bead/post style front sights, and ".DAMAS TURK." in gold with silver border designs. The upper tangs have screw adjustable notch rear sights. They are equipped with single set triggers. The rosewood veneer case has inlaid borders, brass scroll patterns with sea serpents, a nickel-silver central crescent moon shaped plaque and handle with the retailer marked "A.H. Caron in Rauenthal," closely fitted interior with a variety of coordinating loading and maintenance items, including a mallet/loading rod, cleaning rod, full patch container antique ivory powder flask with silver top with scroll and bestial mask designs, silver capper with scroll designs, ball puller attachment, key for the rear sights, turn-screw, combination screwdriver and nipple wrench with turned handle, oiler, ball mold, patch cutter, and balls.

Rating Definition:

Extremely fine with bright original gold, distinct engraving and markings, crisp Damascus twist patterns along the barrel, dark aged patina on the silver, smooth gray throughout with some small areas turning to a darker brown patina, bright niter blue on the rear sight and trigger showing minor fading, and minimal overall wear mainly from handling and storage. The stock is excellent and has crisp carving and checkering, glossy finish, and minimal light dings and handling marks. Mechanically excellent. The case is fine and has some slivers absent from the wood and the inlaid borders, the front left corner piece absent, and mild age and storage related wear. The accessories are generally very fine and have minimal overall wear.



B) Percussion Target Pistol

Manufacturer: German
Model: Percussion
Type: Pistol
Gauge: 44
Barrel: 7 7/8 inch octagon
Finish: gold/gray
Grip:
Stock: walnut
Item Views: 807
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 228
Class: Antique
Description:

See "A." Provenance: The Warren Anderson Collection and The Robert M. Lee Collection

Rating Definition:

Extremely fine with bright original gold inlays, crisp engraving and twist patterns, distinct markings, deep aged patina on the silver, smooth gray throughout, a few small spots of darker patina, most of the bright niter blue remaining on the rear sight and trigger, and light overall wear mainly from handling and storage. The stock is very fine and has crisp carving and checkering, glossy finish, faint hairline crack above the nose of the lock, and some light scratches. Mechanically excellent. This is a very attractive and artistic pair of pistols that will enhance any antique arms collection.



Customer Product Questions

There are currently no customer product questions on this lot