Rock Island Auction Company

Lot 1209: Factory Engraved Colt Black Powder Single Action Army Revolver

Auction Date: August 27, 2022

Documented Factory Engraved Colt Black Powder Single Action Army Revolver with Factory Letter

Price Realized:
Estimated Price: $7,500 - $13,000

Documented Factory Engraved Colt Black Powder Single Action Army Revolver with Factory Letter

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: Single Action Army
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 45 LC
Barrel: 4 3/4 inch round
Finish: nickel
Grip: walnut
Item Views: 790
Item Interest: Very Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 172
Class: Antique

As a factory engraved example, this Peacemaker is one of only around 4,500 or .012% of the total First Generation Colt SAA revolvers manufactured with engraving. The accompanying factory letter lists the revolver with a 4 3/4 inch barrel in .45 caliber, nickel finish, wood stocks and factory engraving when it was shipped to Hartley & Graham, New York City on August 21, 1886. This was a 12 gun shipment. Coming off of the strikes of streetcar workers and a bribery scandal over securing franchises, there was a monumental power struggle in New York City in 1886. The rich were getting richer; the poor getting poorer. Gentleman of the city found themselves in the crosshairs of the working man and needed a way to look after their own. Much like the Colts of the western frontier, the Colts in the more industrialized parts of the country were used both as status symbols and tools of protection. This example of the "Gentleman's Colt" combines both prestige and power. The engraving is consistent with the work of famed Cuno Helfricht Shop and is mostly floral scrollwork on a punch dot background along with zig zag line, star, and fan motifs. The barrel has the two-line Hartford address on top, the frame has the three-line patent date markings, and the trigger guard is marked "45 CAL." Matching serial numbers appear on the frame, trigger guard, and back strap.

Rating Definition:

Very fine overall, retaining 98% plus of the professionally restored/replated nickel plating with crisp recut engraving, and replacement grip showing limited handling marks. Mechanically fine. Factory engraved black powder Colt SAAs are becoming difficult to encounter in any condition. This SAA will add dimension to your growing SAA collection.

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