Offered here is a highly sought after matching numbered Colt Single Action Army Revolver chambered for the .44 rimfire cartridge that is becoming increasing difficult to find, especially one in such exceptionally fine condition as this example. The Colt Single Action Army Revolver is arguably the most iconic handgun of Americana. In the hands of ranchers, cavalrymen, Native Americans, lawmen and outlaws, the Peacemaker’s legacy was forged out in the hostile American West and continues to gain popularity among today's collectors. This SAA is one of only 1,863 Colt chambered in .44 rimfire, making it a highly prized collectable of legendary Colt heritage. Colt introduced its SAA .44 rimfire series in 1875. These revolvers were serial numbered in their own range from 1 to 1863 and were manufactured for approximately five years. Colt sold most of the .44 RF production to South and Central America due to a limited acceptance on the American market where they saw hard and abusive use. Moreover, the 7 1/2 inch barrel was not well received, and most specimens that have found their way back to the United States generally have a shortened barrel. From about 1888 to 1890 the Colt factory converted 107 of the .44 rimfire revolvers to .22 rimfire. Finding a SAA in original 7 1/2 inch barrel, .44 RF configuration in any condition, let alone in exceptionally fine condition as this example, is rarely encountered. The accompanying factory letter lists this revolver with a blue finish, 7 1/2 inch barrel in .44 rimfire, and wood stocks when shipped to Schuyler, Hartley & Graham of New York City on November 3, 1877. The revolver exhibits the period Colt sanctioned distributor Schuyler, Hartley & Graham nickel plating and upgraded grips. The revolver has the original and distinctive hammer with rimfire firing pin secured by two pins and a rectangular hammer slot in the frame. The barrel has the one-line Hartford address on top, the frame has the two-line patent dates marking on the left side, and the trigger guard has "44 CAL" stamped on the left side. The ejector rod has a bullseye head. Matching serial numbers are on the frame, trigger guard, back strap, cylinder, and barrel. Provenance: The Gary Minsey Collection; The Richard Atkinson Collection; Property of a Gentleman
Exceptionally fine. The barrel, ejector rod housing, frame and cylinder retain 75% plus of the retailer (Schuyler, Hartley & Graham, a Colt sanctioned distributor) nickel finish. The grip straps retain traces of nickel in the protected areas, otherwise showing a pleasing smooth gray patina. The attractive grip is very fine with limited age lines, minimal handling marks and attractive grain and color. Mechanically fine. One will look a long time to find as fine of a .44 Rimfire Colt SAA!
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