This revolver was manufactured in 1854 and features the classic German-American scroll engraving associated with Master Engraver Gustave Young. Comparing the engraving on this revolver to others identified via the "Young lists" confirms it was engraved by him and/or his employees. Many of the early engravers at Colt in the 1850s were recent German immigrants who are believed to have trained at the Industrial School in Zella. The engraving is exceptionally fine and detailed and covers over half of the barrel, all of the frame, the flat sides of the loading lever arm, the trigger guard bow, and the top and bottom of the back strap. It primarily consists of classic Germanic scroll patterns with punched backgrounds and floral accents. The scrolls include complex interlaced designs that Young also later used while engraving for Smith & Wesson and have detailed accent marks associated with Gustave Young's work in general. Note in particular the animal head designs on the left side of the barrel and frame. The barrel has the ornate "Saml Colt" inscription rather than the usual barrel address, and the frame has the "COLTS/PATENT" marking engraved in a panel in place of the usual patent marking. It has matching serial numbers and the factory "dot" marking by the lower serial number locations designating the revolver for special finishing. Instead of the usual pin/cone front sight, this revolver has a dovetailed blade. The back strap is inscribed "H.H.T. to H.K.M." No additional information is available identifying the individuals involved.
Very good with 85% original silver plating remaining on the grip frame and displaying an attractive aged patina, 30% original blue finish on the barrel, gray patina on the balance, a few patches of mild pitting, repaired loading lever, crisp engraving, and general mild overall wear. The refinished grip has nice figure, mild scratches and dings, light edge wear, and much of the varnish. Mechanically excellent.
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