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Lot #1115

Lot 1114: New York Militia Colt Cavalry Model Single Action Army Revolver

Scarce and Highly Desirable Documented New York Militia Colt Cavalry Model Single Action Army Revolver with Kopec Gold Seal Letter

Auction Date: December 10, 2022

Lot 1114: New York Militia Colt Cavalry Model Single Action Army Revolver

Scarce and Highly Desirable Documented New York Militia Colt Cavalry Model Single Action Army Revolver with Kopec Gold Seal Letter

Auction Date: December 10, 2022

Estimated Price: $14,000 - $22,500
Price Realized:

Scarce and Highly Desirable Documented New York Militia Colt Cavalry Model Single Action Army Revolver with Kopec Gold Seal Letter

Manufacturer: Colt
Model: Single Action Army
Type: Revolver
Gauge: 45 Long Colt
Barrel: 7 1/2 inch round
Finish: blue/casehardened
Grip: walnut
Stock:
Item Views: 731
Item Interest: Very Active
Serial Number:
Catalog Page: 103
Class: Antique
Description:

This incredible Colt Cavalry Model Single Action Army revolver is accompanied by a gold seal letter from Colt Single Action Army expert John Kopec. He indicates it was manufactured in 1876 and shipped c. December 23rd that year. and then inspected by Lieutenant David A. Lyle and sub-inspected by John T. Cleveland who was also assisted by Lewis Draper, whose initials are found on the frame. The revolver would have been issued to the U.S. Cavalry and was then recalled by the Ordnance Department in 1893 and stored at Springfield Armory. It was then part of the 2,000 Cavalry Model revolvers selected to be returned to Colt for furbishing. Specifically, this revolver was part of the first 800 revolvers which were destined for the State of New York and were left in their original 7 1/2 inch Cavalry Model configuration rather than altered to the more common Artillery Model. Kopec notes, "All serial numbers were kept matching, and those revolvers with serial numbers higher than #10,000 were stamped with the missing prefixed digits of the revolver's primary serial number on their barrels and cylinders." He also notes that these revolvers have the distinctive "bright blue" finish on their hammers and the commercial "charcoal-blue" finish on the other major components aside from the casehardened frames. "Our subject revolver #33519 was shipped from Colt's after being refurbished on October 18th, 1895." These revolvers were later recalled again in 1902 and then soon sold off as surplus arms through retailers Bannerman's. The serial number of this revolver (33519) is also specifically listed in the group of J. T.C sub-inspected New York militia revolvers on page 49 of "Colt Cavalry & Artillery Revolvers...a Continuing Study" by Kopec and Fenn. The revolver has the distinctive features of the 800 Colt refurbished revolvers which include: the niter blue finished hammer, matching serial numbers including re-numbered cylinder, and re-surfaced and re-serial numbered back strap. The revolver has the blue finish on the barrel, ejector housing, cylinder, trigger guard, and back strap. The frame and loading gate are color casehardened. The one-piece walnut grip has an oiled military finish. A New York rack number "12" is stamped on the bottom of the back strap. The ejector rod has the early "bullseye" head. The top of the barrel is roll-stamped with the correct 1876 style address with elongated hyphens at the end. The left side of the frame is roll-stamped with the Colt three-date/three-line patent markings followed by the "U.S." property mark. The inside of the loading gate is stamped with the assembly number "6719". The underside of the barrel is stamped with a "J.T.C." sub-inspection mark and a "P" proof mark. The "J.T.C." sub-inspection mark is visible above the serial number on the bottom of the frame. The cylinder is stamped with the "J.T.C." sub-inspection mark and a "P" proof. The grip is identified as a "spare-parts" replacement previously inspected by Rinaldo A. Carr (small "R.A.C." sub-inspection mark on the left heel) and fitted in 1895. The full serial number is stamped on the underside of the barrel beneath the ejector housing and on the bottom of the frame, trigger guard, and back strap and on the side of the cylinder. All of the visible serial numbers match. The Cavalry Model revolvers refurbished by Colt in 1895 are a scarce and very desirable variation of the Single Action Army revolver.

Rating Definition:

Very fine. The revolver retains 85% of the (factory refurbished) blue and color casehardened finish. Kopec notes, "This revolver's 'Charcoal-Blue' finish remains strong throughout...This blue finish has worn off of the grip-strap but remains with distinct 'candy-striping' patterns along the back strap." He notes the slightly fading case colors are "still very impressive." The barrel, ejector housing, cylinder, trigger guard, and back strap show light to moderate handling wear. The frame has strong case colors while the loading gate has silvered. The hammer retains 90% of the niter blue finish. Most of the screws have significant amounts on niter blue finish remaining. The base pin has some minor marring. The grip is excellent with very minor handling wear. All of the factory markings, serial numbers and Ordnance inspection marks are sharp with the exception of the last digit on the cylinder and the frame sub-inspection mark which shows polishing wear. The action is crisp and functions perfectly. This is an exceptional, desirable Colt Single Action Army noted by Kopec as an "especially well-preserved New York Militia revolver."



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