Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1003: New Haven Arms Co. Volcanic Lever Action No. 1 Pocket Pistol

Auction Date: August 27, 2022

Desirable New Haven Arms Co. Volcanic Lever Action No. 1 Pocket Pistol

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $5,500 - $8,500

Desirable New Haven Arms Co. Volcanic Lever Action No. 1 Pocket Pistol

Manufacturer: New Haven Arms Co.
Model: Volcanic
Type: Pistol
Gauge: 31
Barrel: 3 1/2 inch octagon
Finish: blue
Grip: hardwood
Item Views: 488
Item Interest: Very Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 4
Class: Antique

This is one of an estimated 850 No. 1 pocket pistols with a 3 1/2 inch barrel manufactured by the New Haven Arms Co., New Haven, Connecticut, in 1857-1862. The vast majority of these pistols were factory engraved, making a non-engraved example like this one very scarce. The pistol has the distinctive octagon barrel with integral six-shot magazine, round finger hole in the lever and flat bottom grips. It is fitted with a pinched blade front sight on the barrel and a notch rear sight at the rear of the frame. The top barrel flat is marked "NEW HAVEN CONN. PATENT FEB. 14. 1854." The deletion of "VOLCANIC REPEATING ARMS CO." from the barrel legend occurred after Oliver Winchester assumed control of the Volcanic Repeating Arms Co. and re-organized it as the New Haven Arms Company on May 1, 1857. Both grip panels are numbered to the gun. Volcanic firearms are historically significant and represent an important step in the development of American repeating firearms and self-contained cartridges. The lever action and integral spring-loaded magazine introduced with Volcanic pistols and carbines served as the basic design for the Henry rifle and the Winchester Model 1866, 1873, and 1876 rifles. Oliver Winchester's investment in the Volcanic Repeating Arms Company eventually led to the establishment of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company.

Rating Definition:

Very good plus, retains 20% of the original blue finish, strongest in sheltered areas, with the balance having thinned to mostly a smooth grey patina, and the brass showing an attractively aged patina overall. There are some minor tool marks/dings along the edges of the sideplates. The grips are fine with much of the original varnish and some scattered minor dings and scratches. Mechanically fine.

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