Offered here is an extreme rarity in Colt SAA collecting as it is one of only an estimated 192 standard frame SAAs chambered in .32 Colt (see David Brown's "The 36 Calibers of the Colt Single Action Army," page 202). The accompanying factory record for this revolver confirms the 7 1/2 inch barrel in .32 Colt and blue finish with type of stocks not listed. The letter also states the revolver was shipped on April 15, 1891 to Montgomery Ward & Co. of Chicago, Illinois, as part of the 3 gun shipment. The factory records also indicate the revolver was returned to the factory on May 21, 1891, and then shipped to Hartley & Graham of New York City for E.H. Hotchkins on November 10, 1893. Based on research published in "The Official Record of the Colt Single Action Army Revolver 1873-1895" this revolver is only one of 38 SAAs in this configuration in the 1-164100 serial number range or prior to the cylinder pin retaining screw being changed to the spring loaded system (page 365). The authors note "that in reality there are less revolvers chambered for the .32 Colt cartridge than indicated" in their book as the count includes factory records listing either ".32/c" or ".32 Colt." The authors explained, "Further study indicates that a number of revolvers recorded as .32/c were actually chambered for the S&W target cartridge. A lesser number listed as .32/c were chambered for the S&W revolver cartridge." While there are likely less revolvers chambered for .32 Colt in the official count there are more revolvers chambered for one of the .32 S&W cartridges. This revolver certainly makes for an extremely rare and interesting antique SAA! The revolver is pictured and identified in "The Official Record of the Colt Single Action Army Revolver 1873-1895" on pages 294 and 364 where it is noted that the frame used for the revolver was stamped with the serial number in 1888, three years before it was first shipped from the factory in 1891 and five years when it again shipped from the factory in 1893. The barrel is stamped with the one-line Hartford address on top and "32 COLT" stamped on the left side. The frame has the three-line patent dates marking on the left side. "32 CAL" is stamped on the left side of the trigger guard. The revolver wears a set of checkered Rampant Colt/eagle hard rubber grips. Provenance: The Bob Bostwick Collection; The Richard Atkinson Collection; The Property of a Gentleman
Very good plus. The barrel and ejector rod housing retain 40% original blue finish, the grip straps retain 20% original blue finish, and the cylinder retains slight traces of original blue in the protected areas with a mottled brown-gray patina on the balance. Slight traces of original case colors remain on the frame and hammer. The front sight has been trimmed down. The grips are very good with some wear. Mechanically excellent. An antique black powder SAA in rare .32 Colt that is usually missing from even the most advanced collections.
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