A signature weapon of the Confederacy and one of the most distinctive revolvers of the percussion era, the LeMat features a central smoothbore barrel in addition to the rifled barrel, and was used by P. G. T. Beauregard, Braxton Bragg, J. E. B. Stuart, and other Confederate generals and officers. They were designed by Jean Alexandre LeMat of New Orleans but mainly manufactured in Liege, Belgium and Paris, France. Period advertisements for the revolvers refer to them as "LeMat's Grape Shot Revolvers." The barrels on this example measure .40 caliber and 18 gauge (.64 caliber). It has a triangular front sight, pull-pin style barrel latch, the central selector on the hammer tip for switching between the cylinder and the smoothbore shot barrel, and groove on the hammer selector for a rear sight. The barrel has "Syst. Le Mat Bte s-g-d-g Paris" inscribed in an engraved panel, and the serial number and the "LM" marking on the right at the breech (collectors believe this to be Confederate). The serial number is repeated on the barrel latch, loading lever, shot barrel, right side of the frame, and trigger. The hammer has an "X" on the left. The checkered walnut grips have light engraving on the washer, screw, and nut. The butt has a lanyard loop. Provenance: The Clive Cussler Collection
Very good plus, with strong traces of blue, a mixed brown and gray patina on the balance, showing some minor spotting, edge wear and handling marks overall. Minor space gaps are visible between the frame and sideplate, and weld repairs are visible on the hammer near the striker hinge. The grips are fine with minor dings. Mechanically fine.
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