The Colt Paterson was Samuel Colt's first revolver and helped make his name a byword for the revolver, and, though the Paterson venture was short lived and ended in commercial failure, the successful use of the Paterson by men like the Samuel Walker and the Texas Rangers established both the revolver as a form and Samuel Colt's reputation and ultimately led to the rebirth of Colt's firearms business in the late 1840s and his company's immense success in the 19th century. He received his first patent for revolvers in 1835 in England and then the U.S. in 1836 and formed the Patent Arms Manufacturing Company in Paterson, New Jersey, later the same year. Less than 3,000 of his expensive revolvers split among several models and variations were manufactured before the company closed in 1842. This is a highly sought after example of a Colt Belt Model Paterson Revolver with rarely seen German silver bands and silver plated frame and back strap. This model was manufactured c. 1837-1840. These were produced in the 1-850 serial number range shared between the No. 2 and 3 Belt Model making this one of the later examples. The barrel has a pair of German silver bands at the muzzle and breech, a German-silver blade front sight, "Patent Arms Mg Co Paterson" marked on top, and a fifth thin German silver band on the bottom. The recoil shield also has a pair of inlaid German silver bands. The aforementioned two silver bands constitute the sixth and seventh band respectively. The five-shot, rounded-back cylinder is roll engraved with a centaur hunting scene and "COLT" and four horse-head logo. The matching serial number has been located on the barrel lug, cylinder, cylinder turning ring, trigger, left side of the front strap, and right side of the back strap. The bonded two-piece varnished walnut grip has the straight profile and are beveled on the sides at the bottom.
Fine with 95% plus of the age darkened original silver plating, aged patina on the seven German silver inlaid bands, mottled gray and brown patina on the balance, mild oxidation and pitting, faint barrel markings, and mild overall wear. The grip is also fine and has some flaking and wear on the dark varnish, some slight chipping at the heel and toe, and mild handling and storage marks. Mechanically excellent. This is a very attractive Colt Paterson Belt Model revolver with seven rare German silver bands and silver plating. It is a valuable piece of early Colt firearms history sure to add depth and value to any collection.