Rock Island Auction Company
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Lot 68: Pair of Pistols Owned by Butte, MO Officer Edward J. O'Connor

Auction Date: May 14, 2021

Historic Butte, Montana Police Officer Edward J. O'Connor Revolver and Pistol Holster

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $2,000 - $3,000

A) Smith & Wesson .38 Safety Hammerless 4th Model Double Action Revolver

Manufacturer: Smith & Wesson
Model: 38 Safety Hammerless
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 38 S&W
Barrel: 4 inch solid rib
Finish: blue
Grip: hard rubber
Stock:
Item Views: 1454
Item Interest: Average
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 72
Class: Curio & Relic Handgun
Description:

This pair of pistols and the holster rig belonged to Officer Edward J. O'Connor of Butte, Montana. O'Connor was born in 1910 and join the Butte Police Department in 1929 at the age of 19. O'Connor was a fine officer by all accounts and attend the National Police Academy run by the FBI and also helped in the capture of Harmon and Margaret Waley, the perpetrators of the infamous Weyerhaeuser kidnapping. He passed away in 1939 after a long battle with meningitis. Standard markings and features. Matching serial number on the barrel, barrel latch, cylinder, butt, and right grip panel. Includes a custom made leather holster rig made to fit both guns and a spare magazine, extra magazine for "B", detective's badge, and a letter proclaiming the pair as carried in the line by O'Connor but listing his date of passing incorrectly as 1938.

Rating Definition:

Very fine, retaining 75% original blue with most of the loss concentrated on the cylinder, scattered light oxidation, brown coloration to the grip panels, and well-defined grip checkering. The holster is very good with light wear and use evidence as carried by the Montana lawman in the line of duty. Mechanically excellent.



B) Montana Shipped Colt Model 1908 Hammerless Semi-Automatic Pistol with Factory Letter

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: 1908 Vest Pocket
Type: Pistol
Gauge: 25 ACP
Barrel: 2 inch round
Finish: blue
Grip: walnut
Stock:
Item Views: 1454
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 72
Class: Curio & Relic Handgun
Description:

The included factory letter confirms the current configuration other than the grips, when the gun was shipped to the Missoula Mercantile Company, Missoula, MO care of the Union Hardware Company of Torrington, Connecticut, on February 22, 1934. Provenance: The John Fox Collection

Rating Definition:

Very fine, retaining 95% original blue, 50% casehardened finish on the safeties and trigger, scattered light oxidation, mild handling evidence/holster wear, and well defined grip checkering. A very interesting piece of Montana law enforcement history!



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