Designed by Remington master mechanic, John F. Thomas, these percussion cane guns were patented in 1858 and produced as an effort to break into the burgeoning market of gentleman's defensive accessories. It is estimated that between 1858 and 1866 only 500 of the percussion cane guns were manufactured, with production being significantly interrupted by the Civil War. This example remains in its original percussion configuration making it even more scarce. Along with that, this particular example has the desirable "ball and claw" handle, fashioned out of the same brown gutta percha as the shaft. It is the writer's experience that far fewer of these "ball and claw" canes survived compared to the "dog's head" or curved/"L" shaped canes, and renowned Remington collector, Elliot Burka, lists them as the second most rare of the standard variations, behind only the "bulbous" handle, in an article for the American Society of Arms Collectors. Examples of these various standard handle styles, including the "ball and claw", can be seen on p. 188 of "Canes From the Seventeenth to the Twentieth Century" by Jeffrey B. Snyder. A similar example, serial number 17, incorrectly listed as .44 caliber, can be seen as item no. 322 in "The Karl F. Moldenhauer Collection of Remington Arms" as offered by the Richard A. Bourne Co. There is a small brass band where the handle meets the shaft and a serrated iron ferrule at the tip/muzzle which is faintly marked with the J.F. Thomas patent markings, Remington & Sons address, and "6". It measures 34 1/2 inches overall with the iron ferrule tip in place.
Very fine, the gutta percha shaft and grip showing an attractively aged chocolate tone with some scattered light handling marks and a short hairline crack near the trigger button. The brass shows an attractively aged patina and the iron shows a grey patina with some mild pitting on the ferrule/muzzle tip. Mechanically excellent.
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