Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 3066: Smith & Wesson No. 1 Lever Action Pistol

Auction Date: December 5, 2021

Scarce and Desirable Engraved Smith & Wesson No. 1 Lever Action Pistol with Smith & Wesson Letter

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $6,500 - $9,500

Scarce and Desirable Engraved Smith & Wesson No. 1 Lever Action Pistol with Smith & Wesson Letter

Manufacturer: Smith & Wesson
Model: Volcanic
Type: Pistol
Gauge: 31 Volcanic
Barrel: 4 inch part octagon
Finish: brown/blue
Grip: rosewood
Item Views: 320
Item Interest: Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 61
Class: Antique

This Small frame No. 1 Lever Action Pistol was manufactured by Horace Smith and Daniel B. Wesson in Norwich Connecticut c. 1854. The pistol has the distinctive part-round/part octagon, 4-inch, .31 caliber, octagon barrel with integral magazine and loading lever with finger hole. The barrel has a crowned muzzle, rounded T-bar spring, nickel-silver, pinch-top, front sight and clam-shell shaped magazine follower. The top barrel flat is roll-stamped with the two-line legend: "SMITH & WESSON/NORWICH. CT.". The receiver has a fixed rear sight, ejection port with semi-circular cut-out on the front end, loading lever with finger loop but no spur, finely knurled hammer spur and two-piece, bag-shaped, rosewood grips. The serial number is stamped on the left side of the butt beneath the grips. "18" is stamped on the inside of both grips. The pistol has internal retaining springs and lacks the screws on the bottom found on pistols with serial numbers higher than "1C". The receiver sides and back, back strap, side plates and back of the hammer are factory engraved with the standard S&W open scroll and floral engraving. The barrel was originally browned, the receiver blued and the grips have a varnished piano finish. The pistol is complete with a copy of a S&W factory letter that states this pistol was manufactured in 1854, had a blue finish and was sold through J. Dixon & Co., the sole distributor for S&W lever action pistols. Provenance: The Milan J. Turk Collection

Rating Definition:

Good. The barrel and receiver have an even, silver-gray, patina with slight surface texture. There are traces of shallow pitting on the barrel, magazine and receiver. The legend on the barrel is clear. The well-executed factory engraving on the receiver, side-plates and hammer is sharp. Most of the mottled case colors are present on the hammer. The grips are very good with minimal handling wear and retain much of the original varnished piano finish. This is a good-looking, original, example of a rare Smith & Wesson No. 1 Lever Action pistol.

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