Offered here is an early example of the legendary Peacemaker in .45 LC with an interesting shipping history that makes it a must have for the serious SAA collector. The revolver was manufactured in 1875 and as noted in the factory letter, this SAA was shipped to B. Kittredge & Co. of Cincinnati, Ohio and sold to Hodgkins & Haigh of New York City with a June 30, 1875 date of shipment. This shipment was for 45 units. In 1875 and 1876 a group of Colt distributors known as the "Colt Allies" which included Benjamin Kittredge, organized to buy 12,000 SAAs from Colt at a discounted price at $10.50 each. As noted in "The Official Record of the Colt Single Action Army Revolver, 1873-1895", "[$10.50] was considerably less than the $13.50 the U.S. Government was paying and generated a great deal of correspondence between the company and the government. The controversy was finally settled by convincing the government that the discount was due to the fact that the Allies agreed to handle most of Colt's advertising" (page 51). The purchasing of such a large quality of SAAs by the Allies allowed Colt to pre-package the units in crates of fifty and some of these crates remained in storage for several months or even years. Kittredge was known to "drop-ship" some of his purchased revolvers to Hodgkins & Haigh of New York City and to J.P. Lovell of Boston. This SAA was one of those Kittredge "drop-shipped" to Hodgkins & Haigh. The grip was likely added by the New York retailer. Matching full or partial serial numbers appear on the frame, trigger guard, back strap, cylinder ("9604"), and barrel ("9604").
Good, showing authentic working gun character, proudly displaying a pleasing smooth brown-gray patina formed over decades of authentic use. Traces of the period retailer applied nickel remain, the balance mostly a brown patina. The grip shows similar character with an aged mellow appearance and an added personal modification by a previous owner who shaved the lower front of the left side to better fit his pinkie figure. Mechanically fine. This documented 1875 Colt Ally purchased SAA will bring added dimension to any Peacekeeper or 19th century American firearms collection.
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