Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 3009: Volcanic Repeating Arms Company Lever Action Navy Pistol

Auction Date: September 12, 2021

Scarce Volcanic Repeating Arms Company Lever Action Navy Pistol

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $11,000 - $16,000

Scarce Volcanic Repeating Arms Company Lever Action Navy Pistol

Manufacturer: Volcanic
Model: Navy Model
Type: Pistol
Gauge: 41 Volcanic
Barrel: 8 inch octagon
Finish: blue/gold
Grip: walnut
Item Views: 405
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 8
Class: Antique


This Volcanic Repeating Arms Company Lever Action Navy Pistol with eight-inch barrel and rare gold-plated frame was manufactured c. 1856. The pistol has the distinctive octagon barrel with integral nine-shot magazine. The half-rib barrel has a cone front sight, crowned muzzle, rounded magazine T-bar muzzle catch and steel, clam-shell shaped magazine follower. The brass frame has a dovetail mounted rear sight and shallow, semi-circular cut-outs on the front and rear of the ejection port. The bolt has a single hook extractor. The hammer spur is hand-knurled. The loading lever has the distinctive finger hole. The pistol has two-piece, varnished, walnut grips. The barrel/magazine has a blue finish. The bolt, rear sight, loading lever, lever spring and cartridge elevator are niter blue. The hammer and trigger are color casehardened. The brass frame has a rarely encountered gold-plated finish but lacks the simple factory engraving found on most Volcanic Repeating Arms pistols. The top barrel flat is roll-stamped with the three-line legend: "THE VOLCANIC/REPEATING ARMS CO./PATENT NEW HAVEN CONN. FEB. 14. 1854." The serial number is stamped on the right side of the loading lever, left side of the frame beneath the grips and on the inside of both grips. All the visible serial numbers match. A small cartouche consisting of the block letters "JPE" enclosed in a rectangle is stamped on the bottom of the frame behind the cartridge elevator; the significance of this mark is unknown.

Rating Definition:

Fine. The pistol is all original and retains 50% plus of the blue and casehardened finish. The balance of blue on the barrel/magazine has aged to an attractive plum color. The surfaces of the barrel/magazine are smooth and free from handling marks, and the edges are crisp. The barrel legend is sharp. The bolt, rear sight, cartridge elevator, lever and lever spring retain 20% of the niter blue finish. The hammer and trigger have most of the mottled, dove-gray case colors. Traces of delicate gold-plated finish are visible on protected areas of the frame. The walnut grips are very fine with scattered minor handling marks and retain 80% plus of the original lacquer finish. This is an exceptional example of a scarce and historically significant Volcanic Repeating Arms Company Lever Action Navy Pistol with rarely encountered gold-plated frame.

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