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Extremely Rare Documented Fabrique Nationale High Power Semi-Automatic Pistol, Serial Number "1", with Authentication Letter by FN Among the First Weapons Made After the Liberation of Belgium in 1944

John Moses Browning's High Power Pistol

Danielle Hollembaek 8/22/2019 You’d be hard pressed to find a firearm designer who will ever be as important as or more prolific than John Moses...Read More
Mateba Unica 6 Double Action Auto-Revolver

Semi Automatic Revolvers: The Webley-Fosbery and Mateba

Guest Blog 08/20/2019 At the end of the 19th century, governments around the world began seeing the functional advantages of semi automatic pistols over single...Read More
Izhevsk AK-47 rifle

Reproduction Old Guns Are More Difficult Than They Seem

Guest Blog 08/14/2019 Almost any gun forum on any given month will have at least one person asking “Why can’t I get a cheap reproduction...Read More
baby nambu with ammunition

Japanese Nambu Pistols

Danielle Hollembaek 08/06/2019 The Nambu pistol is a classic Japanese semi-automatic handgun created for military service by its namesake Kijirõ Nambu. Like many Japanese military...Read More
Thank you from RIAC

Answering Your Questions About Rock Island Auction Company

08/02/2019 At the beginning of July, we issued a short survey about our gun auction catalogs, how you bid at Rock Island Auction Company, and...Read More
First Special Service Force

The First Special Service Force: "The Devil's Brigade"

By Joel Kolander 07/23/2019     Last week, marked the passing of Arthur “Art” Pottle, a 98-year old veteran of World War II. Living his...Read More
Abercrombie & Fitch Founder's Portraits

What Does Abercrombie and Fitch Have To Do With Old Guns?

Danielle Hollembaek 07/19/2019 Anyone who frequented a mall in the 1990s to mid-2010s is bound to have come across a store with such a strong...Read More
Raised Bidder Card

Gun Auction Winning: Easier Than You Think

 By Joel Kolander 07/12/2019 The fact of the matter is, it's a lot easier to win a gun auction than you think. Despite this, we...Read More
Two Chinese SKS Semi-Automatic Rifles

Why Do People Like SKS Rifles?

By Danielle Hollembaek 07/03/2019 Lightweight, fast, and reliable, what’s not to like about the SKS rifle? If you explore any gun auction catalog or browse...Read More
Iconic Winchester 1866

What Makes Winchester Firearms So Valuable?

by Danielle Hollembaek 06/15/2019 The name “Winchester” rings through the years of gun collecting past, carrying a prestige few other manufacturers can reach. But how...Read More
Sharps derringer

The Origins of Sharps Antique Derringers

by Danielle Hollembaek 06/11/2019 In the 1850s, the extreme popularity of antique derringer pistols swept the nation like wildfire. Henry Deringer, the man who made...Read More
Matt Carriker Uzi

Demolition Ranch Gets an Uzi

By Joel Kolander 06/07/2019 By now, most of you are probably familiar with YouTube channel DemolitionRanch. Hosted by Matt Carriker, it is the single largest...Read More
pistol braces

Technical Compliance: The Braced Pistol

By Ryan Sullivan 05/24/2019 History is replete with examples of politicians and leaders attempting to come up with rules to restrict human behavior… and upstanding...Read More

The Philadelphia Deringer – How It Links To History

by Danielle Hollembaek 05/29/2019 Petite and purposeful, antique derringer pistols have served as practical, concealable guns for over 150 years. The story behind the small...Read More

How To Choose the Perfect Gun Cabinet

By Joel Kolander 05-21-2019 There comes a time when one realizes their current method of gun storage is, shall we say, inadequate. Maybe that pile...Read More
engraved commercial Luger, silver grips

A Response To Amoskeag Auction Company

05/17/2019 By Joel Kolander   Greetings to one and all, My name is Joel Kolander and here at Rock Island Auction Company I head up...Read More
Civil War Era Paris Marked First Model Le Mat Grapeshot

The 7 Most Sought-After Civil War Guns

by Danielle Hollembaek 05/08/2019 The Civil War, an era in America history that changed the country’s future. The war itself not only shaped the country...Read More
Uncle Al biography

Tack Driving Target Rifles of Uncle Al Freeland

By Joel Kolander 05/03/2019   When it comes to competitive target shooting, a name that one finds frequently is Al Freeland. He was known as...Read More
Custer overlooks the massacre and mutilation of Lt. Lyman Kidder and his detachment. "Custer's scout, William Comstock, believed Kidder might have escaped had he heeded the advice of his own scout." (Picture courtesy of Wheeler)

Tortured by Indians

Joel Kolander May 2, 2019 In the Rock Island Auction Company Preview Hall preparations are already being made for our September 2013 Premiere Auction. Displays...Read More
Big Arnold Chernoff

Gun Collecting Hall of Fame: Big Arnold Chernoff

By Danielle Hollembaek 05/01/2019 Collector firearms are most often sought when they possess an extraordinary rarity or historic significance or, but sometimes, the previous owners...Read More
Samuel Colt and Robert Adams

Revolver Showdown: Samuel Colt’s 1851 Navy vs. Robert Adams’ Double Action

Seth Isaacson 4/23/2019   Ask any American firearms collector what inventor made the most important revolvers in the mid-19th century, and you’ll almost certainly hear...Read More
Experimental Patent Model Colt 1851 Revolver

Schenck’s Hair Trigger: In Patent & In Practice

Guest  blog 04/15/2019 Hair triggers were not a new idea when Mr. Schenck of San Antonio patented his related device in 1866. What was new,...Read More
The first ever Parker Borthers .410 Bore Shotgun

A History of Parker Brothers Shotguns

By Danielle Hollembaek 04/10/2019   When thinking about longstanding firearm companies, one question that frequently comes to mind is, “Where did these businesses get their...Read More
John Blissett Percussion Belt Pistol

A History of Scottish Pistols

By Brian Beck 04/04/2019 That time of year is almost upon us again! The time of year where you pull your kilt out of the...Read More
Robert McCormick’s “Horseman” Type U.S. Flintlock Pistol

McCormick’s "Horseman" Flintlock: The First U.S. Martial Pistol

Danielle Hollembaek 03/29/2019 The Colt M1911, Luger, and Browning Hi Power are all classic military pistols that collectors have come to know and love all...Read More
Smith & Wesson .32 Safety Hammerless 2nd Model Double Action Revolver Bicycle Gun Barrel

Smith & Wesson Bicycle Guns: Dog Defense

Guest Blog 03/21/2019 The term “velocipede” may be foreign to most today, but it was familiar in 19th century Europe, where it was another way...Read More
Sword Handle

The Tiffany Sword of General James W. Forsyth

Danielle Hollembaek 03/14/2019 Too often history demands answers. We want to hear the narrative of good fighting against evil, and we want clear conclusions of...Read More
200 Year Evolution of Pistols

Guide to Pistols: The Over 200 Year Evolution

Danielle Hollembaek 03/13/2019 The Extraordinary History of the Pistol    Pistols are essential to any gun enthusiast's collection. From their ease of use to their readily...Read More
Man holding a long gun in the Rock Island Auction Company preview hall.

Everything You Need to Know About Gun Auction Sites

By Danielle Hollembaek 03/01/2019 Whether you are looking for a new hunting rifle or an antique firearm to add to your gun collection, you are...Read More
Kevin Hogan President RIAC

A Letter to NRA Voters from RIAC President Kevin Hogan

By Kevin Hogan 02/25/2019 Dear Voting NRA Members, It is my pleasure and honor to run for a spot on the NRA Board of Directors,...Read More
Colt Buntline rear sight

The 15 Most Expensive Old Guns That Have Sold at Rock Island Auction

By Joel Kolander 02/21/2019   Gun shows and local gun stores have long been the preferred method for finding and collecting old guns. If you...Read More
Rare U.S. military guns

Rare and Extraordinary U.S. Military Gun Prices

By Joel Kolander 02/11/2019 Exploring Remarkable U.S. Military Gun Prices The United States has been fighting in wars since The Shot Heard Round the World....Read More
This is a rare flintlock revolver. There is a star detail and checkering on its wooden grip.

A Beginner’s Guide to Antique Firearms

By Danielle Hollembaek 02/07/2019 The hobby of collecting is a passion people start doing as children. Whether it is gathering an assortment of stamps, cards,...Read More
Smith & Wesson No. 2 Army revolver

Rollin White's Patent Problems

Guest Post 02/08/2019 Patent infringement is an age-old problem, and the firearms industry is not immune to its troubles. One of the most important design...Read More
collecting used guns for sale

3 Reliable Ways to Find Used Guns for Sale

Guest Post 02/06/2019 As a collector of antique firearms, finding reliable sources to purchase used guns for sale is challenging. While your local gun or big box stores offer...Read More
Exhibition Quality Savage Model 1899 Lever Action Rifle. Sold for $540,000 in December 2016.

The Savage Model 99

By Danielle Hollembaek 01/31/2019 Very few firearms can claim the rare feat of being manufactured for over 100 years. With the constant evolution and competition...Read More

5 Gun Auction Myths That You Should Ignore

Guest Post 01/29/2019 A gun auction is a fantastic way to buy and sell unique weapons. Auctions allow collectors to find rare and special items,and explore a huge range...Read More
Lot 3097: Pettingill C S Army Revolver 44 percussion

Pettengill: The Civil War's Only Hammerless Revolver

1/25/2019 Guest Blog Countless revolver variations found their way into the hands of soldiers, both North and South, during the Civil War. From the diminutive...Read More
Fine Allen & Thurber 1837 Patent Pepperbox Pistol

The Pepperbox Pistol

By Danielle Hollembaek 01/16/2019 Small, inexpensive, and effective for self-defense are three characteristics that made the “pepperbox” revolver highly desirable in the civilian market during...Read More
1883 Burgess rifle

The Colt Burgess Rifle and Samuel Colt

  01/11/2019 By: Joel Kolander     Samuel Colt is often remembered as much for his business sense and marketing prowess as he was for...Read More
Buffalo Bill Colt 1861 Navy

Top 10 Guns of 2018

01/04/2018 By Danielle Hollembaek 2018 has finally come to a close, and it was a HUGE year for Rock Island Auction Company. Throughout the entire...Read More
winchester rifles

Evolution of an Icon: Winchester Lever-Action Rifles

12/26/2018 Guest Post   Established in 1866 in New Haven, Connecticut, Winchester Repeating Arms Company has made some of the most visually and culturally iconic...Read More
engraved Colt Bisley with pearl grips

Free Shipping!

Free Shipping Promotion Rules.   December is the season for giving, and RIAC wants to join in on the festive spirit. Our 2019 February Regional...Read More
collector's firearms hunting guns

Collector’s Firearms vs. Hunting Guns: 3 Distinct Differences

To the average person, there may not be many differences between a regular hunting gun and collector’s firearms. They may generally look similar to one another,...Read More

10 Most Popular Instagram Posts of 2018

12/19/2018 By Danielle Hollembaek   Who would have thought back in 2016 when we started our Instagram page we'd be on our way to 20,000...Read More
cased Baby Paterson revolver

Top 10 Sale Prices for the December Premiere Gun Auction

12/06/2018 By Danielle Hollembaek   Another Premiere Gun Auction has come and gone for RIAC, and this one was special.  With a realized total of...Read More

The Gyrojet Pistol

11/27/2018 Guest Blogger When the 1960s dawned, the future was bright and anything seemed possible - including outer space exploration and colonization. NASA had been...Read More
A.A. White engraved Colt revolver

Collector Firearms  Available With Master Engraving | Rock Island Auction

11/21/2018 Guest Blog View all of our Single Action Army Revolvers in the December gun auction. One of the most well-known engravers of collector firearms and revolvers  was A.A....Read More
Gold Smith & Wesson No. 3 Target revolver

Smith & Wesson New Model No. 3 - Big Guns, Big Names, and Big Guns Auctions

Guest Post 11/16/2018 View all Smith & Wesson Revolvers in the December Premiere Auction Smith & Wesson’s New Model Number Three single-action revolvers are big...Read More
Winchester Model 42 shotgun

Winchester Model 42 Shotgun Factory Engraved

Guest Blog 11/09/2018 Search Our Current Catalog For All Shotguns Winchester shotguns are some of the most valuable and impressive firearms to add to a...Read More
snaphance pistols, Italian

How To Identify Antique Firearm Locks

By Seth Isaacson 10/31/2018   The various forms of locks used on early muzzle loading antique firearms can be very confusing, but they also create...Read More
cased Beaumont-Adams revolver

The Beaumont-Adams Revolver: An Impresive Intersection

10/26/2018 Guest Blog Civil War arms collectors are no doubt familiar with James Kerr and the revolvers that bear his name. They may also be...Read More
FG42 paratrooper rifle

The Top 10 Machine Guns With Sale Prices

10/12/2018 By Joel Kolander   Ever since we published (and recently updated) our post on the Top 10 M1 Garand rifles sold by Rock Island Auction...Read More
Wilson Arms Drop In Machine Gun Auto Sear

NFA Machine Guns and the Collector's Market

10/11/2018 By Ryan Sullivan Of all the questions one can get asked about firearms, the most troublesome relate to value. In the collectible arms trade,...Read More
Civil War carbines

Civil War Carbines: The Lesser Known and Affordable

10/12/2018 By Brian Beck   If TV and movies are to be believed, Civil War cavalry troops were always bravely charging the enemy head on...Read More
Colt Woodsman First Series

Colt Woodsman Pistols at Auction ‘Museum-Quality’

10/05/2018 Guest Post Colt Woodsman Pistols From The Robert E. Petersen Collection December 2018 Premiere Firearms Auction Publishing icon Robert E. Petersen is well-known in two major...Read More
Winchester Model 75 Bolt Action Target Rifle

Old Guns with New Life

Guest Post 10/05/2018   Collectors love old guns. Sometimes it is their historical value, other times it is their interesting mechanical function, and once in...Read More
engraved Colt Single Action Army revolvers

Colt Single Action Army: Why You Want 2nd & 3rd Gen

09/28/2018 Written by Brian Beck   Colt Single Action Army Revolvers You Should Give a Second... or Maybe Third Look See what I did there?...Read More
Berdan Sharps rifle Civil War

The Sharps Rifle of Berdan's Sharpshooters

08/30/2018 By Brian Beck   With a Sharps Rifle New Model 1859 that was issued to Berdan’s Sharpshooters available September 8th in our Premiere Firearms...Read More
French percussion dueling pistols

What is a Dueling Pistol?

08/16/2018 By Seth Isaacson The tradition of dueling, particularly with pistols, has been a popular topic of discussion in the last several years due in...Read More
WWI Remington Model 10 trench gun

Collecting: The Trench Gun

07/27/2018 By Joel Kolander Trench guns hold a fascination with collectors and a "cool factor" all their own. But why? Is it simply because they...Read More
M5A1 Stuart Light Tank

"Tanks, Jeeps, & Armor... Oh My!" RIAC Military Vehicles

07/20/2018 By Joel Kolander Unless you've been completely ignoring our social media accounts, you're probably aware that we have some pretty fantastic military vehicles coming...Read More
Schermuly rocket pistol

The Schermuly Pistol Rocket Apparatus

06/08/2018 By Joel Kolander If a firearm is unusual enough, it enters into that special place of "curiosa": the Gyrojet, harmonica guns, duckfoot pistols, cane...Read More
Exhibition engraved Colt Python Howard Dove

Collector Firearms Showdown: Top 10 Colt Python Revolvers | Rock Island Auction

05/30/2018 By Joel Kolander Colt Python - These Are Some Of The Best Python Guns Sold At Auction   If you follow the collector firearms market, you...Read More
Lindsay two shot hammers

Four Unusual Civil War Era Innovations In Firearm Design

05-22-2018 By Joel Kolander   If you're a student of firearms history, then we don't need to tell you that the 19th century was rife...Read More
New Haven Arms Volcanic pistol

Brass Framed Beauties

05/18/2018 By Joel R. Kolander There is a lot of misinformation floating around about firearms that utilize so-called "brass" in their construction. First and foremost...Read More
factory engraved Winchester 1887 shotgun

Is This the Finest Factory Engraved Winchester 1887 Shotgun Ever?

By Joel R. Kolander 05-11-2018   One of the firearms on my bucket list is a Winchester Model 1887 shotgun. They're big, distinct, beautiful, pack...Read More
Colt Dragoon revolver

Colt Dragoon: History and Variations

04/25/2018 By Joel Kolander Early Colts have been hot commodities in the auction world for some time now, and RIAC's world record sale of a...Read More

The Best Way to Sell Your Guns Online

04/06/2018 By Joel R. Kolander What is the best way to sell your guns online? Selling firearms can be a challenging process, especially if you...Read More
Bowie knives of Robert Berryman

Spectacular Swords & Blades

03/23/2018 By Joel R. Kolander A fine arms collection often consists of more than just firearms. Advertising materials, ammunition, cases, factory documents, and accoutrements often...Read More

4 Guns: The Finest Known of Their Kind

  03/16/2018 By Joel R. Kolander When you declare something "the best" you better come with the goods to back it up. Usually the best...Read More
Confederate sword of General Semmes

3 Items of Great Significance Unveiled at RIAC

03/09/2018 By Joel R. Kolander   Firearms auctions at Rock Island Auction Company regularly contain thousands of arms that collectors dream of placing in their...Read More
Colt ring lever rifle cylinder

Collectible Firearms: 10 Rare Colt Revolving Rifles and Long Arms

02/20/2018 By Joel Kolander   It's safe to say that when most when most us talk about a "Colt" we mean a six-gun. Revolvers raised...Read More
Long Ranger shotgun

Guns of the Lone Ranger at Auction

02/07/2018 By Joel Kolander   "In the early days of the western United States, a masked man and an Indian rode the plains, searching for...Read More
Springfield M1903 with extended magazine

Rare M1903 Springfield Rifles

01/12/2018 By Joel Kolander U.S. military arms are hot collectors items right now. M1911 prices are rapidly increasing, M1 Garands are being scooped up at...Read More
Winchester On the Rocky Mountains

Top 15 Firearms of 2017

12/28/2017 By Joel R. Kolander At Rock Island Auction Company we cater to collectors of all levels. Our Online Only Auctions sell hundreds of great...Read More
Year In Review 2017

2017 Year in Review

12/26/2017 By Joel Kolander We did it again. Rock Island Auction Company is proud to report more than $63 million in auction sales for 2017,...Read More
cased engraved Colt Model 1903 pocket hammerless

Top Instagram Posts of 2017

12/19/2017 By Joel Kolander   There sure are a healthy amount of firearms enthusiasts on Instagram! Ever since we joined in 2016, our numbers have...Read More
Whitney Wolverine blued

Rise and Fall of the Whitney Wolverine

11/28/2017 By Joel Kolander The design of the Whitney Wolverine might have some thinking it's a bit out of place among the other collectible and...Read More
RIAC Auction Hall panorama

5 Gun Auction Bidding Tips from RIAC CEO, Pat Hogan

11/17/2017 By Pat Hogan & Joel Kolander Gun Auction Bidding Tips The 2018 December Premiere Firearms Auction will be one of the largest Premier Auctions...Read More
French knife pistol with corkscrew

Knife Guns!

11/10/2017 By Joel Kolander Knife Guns! Today, we might view having a gun on our knife as leaning toward a comedic level of overkill. However,...Read More
big bore rounds

Shooting Fat Mac - The .950 JDJ Collector Firearm

11/3/2017 By Joel Kolander Subscribe to our YouTube Channel for more great gun videos! Our videos on the SSK Industries rifle chambered in 950 JDJ,...Read More

RIAC Announces LIVE Online Bidding!

10/26/2017 By Joel  Kolander RIAC Live Very few places offer live online bidding, and the majority of those that do offer it do so via...Read More
Peabody-Martini rifle What Cheer

3 Reasons Why Every Hunter Should Own an Antique Rifle

10/07/2017 Guest post by Michael Decker Antique firearms are in high demand these days, particularly antique rifles. As a hunter, and a person who is...Read More
RIA text message alert

RIAC Offers Text Message Alerts

10/10/2017 By Joel Kolander When Rock Island Auction Company completely redesigned their webpage in 2016, vast improvements were made to the look of the site...Read More
Honus Wagner shotgun

Honus Wagner's Parker Brothers Shotguns

10/05/2017 By Joel Kolander   You don't have to be a collector to have heard about Honus Wagner. Baseball fans are certainly familiar with the...Read More
Holland & Holland by Philippe Grifnee

5 Holland & Holland Shotguns by Master Philippe Grifnee

09/29/2017 By Joel Kolander View Shotguns in catalog Let's be honest. A shotgun made by Holland & Holland is not an "every man's" gun. While...Read More
D-DAY Flag Gold Beach

D-Day Flag Up for Auction

09/06/2017 By Joel Kolander The events of June 6, 1944 will long be known to the world as D-Day. It remains the largest attack from...Read More
hateful eight revolver

A Colt from "The Hateful Eight"

08/04/2017 By Joel Kolander   If you haven’t seen Quentin Tarentino’s The Hateful Eight, go see it right after you finish reading this article.  ...Read More
Engraved Colt Python Howard Dove

40 Colt Python Revolvers

08/03/2017 By Joel Kolander Also Read our blog Why is the Colt Python So Popular? And The Top 10 Colt Pythons   Everyone seems to be have...Read More
Rappahannock Forge flintlock pistol

The Flintlock Pistols of Rappahannock: The Forge that Armed America

07/27/2017 by Andrew Padavich Authentic Revolutionary War firearms are rare items to find, and that includes flintlock pistols. Examples fortunate enough to still exist are...Read More
Gary Cooper Smith & Wesson revolver

3 Smith & Wesson Revolvers with Famous Owners

07/21/2017 By Joel Kolander We all know the frequent lament of many a gun owner: “If only this gun could talk!” Often voiced when pining...Read More
Gun Auction facts

We Deal in Guns... and Facts

07/20/2017 By Joel Kolander In the marketing and advertising world, there is a lot of pride at stake over being “the best.”  Truck manufacturers tout...Read More
M1 Garand prices

M1 Garands Prices & Trends (with historical values)

07/11/2017 By Joel Kolander   View the RIAC Top 10 Selling M1 Garands Shopping for collectible firearms can be a challenge, especially if you're looking...Read More
M1 with collimator sight

The Top 10 M1 Garand Rifles

07/07/2017 By Joel Kolander Also read M1 Garand Prices & Trends   One of the most well-known collector firearms is the M1 Garand, a rifle...Read More
Marlin Model 336 lever action rifle

The Five Most Popular Hunting Guns. Ever.

06/21/2017 By Joel Kolander Search Gun Auction Catalog Lots of websites compile lists. "The Top 10 Concealed Carry Pieces" or "The 5 Reloading Tools You...Read More
Colt MK IV 70 Series pistol stag grips

The Barbecue Guns of Summer

06/14/2017 Written by Joel R. Kolander It's that magical time of year. You know the one, where the smoky aromas of briquettes, wood chips, and...Read More
Roger Rule's Winchester Model 70

Roger Rule's Winchester Model 70 Rifle

06/09/2017 Winchester Model 70 Up For Auction Owned By Roger Rule Please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for more gun videos.Read More

How to Identify a Winchester 1866

06/01/2017 By Joel Kolander Some antique guns need no introduction. This is especially true for Winchester Model 1866 rifles, because they WERE the introduction! With...Read More
New Web Features

New Web Features

05/24/2017 By Joel Kolander As most of you already know, late last year RIAC redesigned their entire webpage from the ground up. New look, new...Read More
Winchester Model 1866 rifle

The Evolution of the Winchester Rifle

 05/17/2017 By Joel Kolander [Note: This story originally appeared in our blog as "The Evolution of 'That Damned Yankee Rifle" in May 2013. Previously only...Read More
Winchester m1 carbines in original crate

The Inseparable Winchester M1 Carbines

05-03-2017 By Joel Kolander Time is a relentless force. Marching on and on, it never throws things back into order (or so says the second...Read More
incredible Winchester 1887 shotgun

A Wealth of Antique Winchester Rifles

04/28/2017 By Joel Kolander If you've been following the goings-on here at Rock Island Auction Company, you know that there are some outstanding antique Winchester...Read More
Brazilian URU submachine gun

Top 5 Under $5K

04/25/2017 By Joel Kolander Something we hear quite frequently on social media and at gun shows is something to the tune of, "Oh, I could...Read More
Preview Hall Sat Sun

Behind the Scenes - How RIAC Sells Your Old Guns

04/21/2017 By Joel Kolander   "What Happens When RIAC Sells My Old Guns?"   Unless you've had a tour of our facility or seen our...Read More
Winchester 1886 Turnbull engraved gold

Winchester Rifles Highly Finished Arms - REBORN!

04/14/2017 By Joel Kolander From Winchester's earliest days, even dating back to when it was the Volcanic Repeating Arms Company, it has produced remarkable deluxe...Read More
Colt House Pistol cased engraved

Colt's Cloverleaf - The House Pistol

03/31/2017 By Joel Kolander Colt House Pistols, more commonly referred to as a "Cloverleaf," were not the manufacturer's most popular pistol. Produced only from 1871...Read More
Blunderbuss of Thomas Graham

The Blunderbuss of General Thomas Graham

03/24/2017 By Seth Isaacson The Blunderbuss of General Thomas Graham One of the most fascinating aspects of working at Rock Island Auction Company and studying...Read More
ELVIS revolvers and badge

Elvis Revolver Memorabilia - The King and His Collection

03-17-2017 by Joel Kolander Elvis Revolver Memorabilia One of the people in American history least likely in need of an introduction is Elvis Aaron Presley....Read More
Japanese Swords gunto

Wartime Japanese Swords

3/10/2017 By Ryan Sullivan Wartime Japanese Swords From the perspective of the modern wartime Japanese sword collector of vintage Japanese swords, the words “very fine”...Read More
Confederate Iron Frame Henry

The Confederate Iron Frame Henry Rifle

03/03/2017 By Joel Kolander Iron Frame Henry Rifle: Not to be confused with their modern counterparts, Henry rifles have long been an indispensable part of...Read More
Type 99 at Saipan

The Japanese Type 99 from The Battle of Saipan

2/10/2017 By Joel Kolander "If this gun could talk," is the frequent lament of those of us who have collected an old gun or two....Read More
Walther FP contact switch

The Electric Walther FP

2/3/2017 By Joel Kolander Last week when writing about the match grade target pistols, I came across one that absolutely fascinated me. While still maintaining...Read More
Three German Target Air Pistols

Olympic-Grade Arms at Surprising Prices

01/27/2017 By Joel Kolander There's a saying in the automotive world that goes, "Fast, reliable, and cheap. You can pick two." If firearms had a...Read More
Muzzle, scope, and sight of Model 320

Fantastic Flops: Smith & Wesson Model 320

1/19/2017 By Joel Kolander In the 1800s, any idea for how to improve firearms was fair game, and it resulted in some inventions and innovations...Read More
Colt Paterson charger

How to Use A Colt Paterson Charger

12/29/2016 By Joel Kolander After posting a photo on Reddit, we received some questions on the accessories accompanying a Colt Paterson No. 3 Belt Model....Read More
Hi-Standard Christmas gun ad

Gun Ads from Christmases Past

December 24, 2014 By Joel Kolander (Note: This story originally appeared December 24, 2014, on our original blog. This holiday season seems as good a...Read More
Sedgley Glove Gun

The Sedgley Glove Gun as Seen in "Inglourious Basterds"

12/07/2016 By Joel Kolander Here's a gun that any Quentin Tarantino fan is sure to love! Our December 2016 Premiere Auction hosts an iconic glove...Read More
Belgian Wall Gun action

The Belgian Behemoth Wall Rifle

11/18/2016 By Joel Kolander Wall guns, rampart guns, turret guns, fortress guns, "Jingals," and boat guns, are all names used to describe essentially the same...Read More
silver Colt 1849 Pocket

The Civil War Surgeon's Educated Colt Revolver

11/12/2016 By Joel Kolander There are times when you can look at a gun and know it has a story or two to tell. Guns...Read More

The Letter of Grief-Stricken General Beauregard

10-28-16 By Joel Kolander   Pierre Gustave Toutant-Beauregard (a.k.a. "PGT") is a name so distinct that it is readily recognizable to most Americans, even if...Read More

A Loose Artifact of Jefferson Davis

10-21-16 By Joel Kolander The history and political contributions of Jefferson Davis are well-documented so they will not be recounted here. Instead, attention will be...Read More

Samuel Colt and the Charter Oak Guns

10-14-16 By Joel Kolander If asked to talk about the Charter Oak, or Charter Oak guns, few Americans aside from Connecticut residents, American history professors,...Read More
Loveless Custom Knife Auction

Blades Gun Collectors Should Love

09-02-16 By Joel Kolander   It  may be the understatement of the year to say that Rock Island Auction Company sells a few guns, and...Read More
Teddy Roosevelt gold monogram

Theodore Roosevelt's Hunting Knife

08/25/2016 By Joel Kolander To say that Teddy Roosevelt is a well-known, beloved, and important character in American history is an understatement. Though fame tends...Read More
Buffalo Bill Winchester Rifle

Great Shooters Old Guns from Buffalo Bill's Wild West

Joel Kolander 08/19/2016 Reunions with old friends can be a time filled with nostalgia, laughs, and more than a few old yarns to tell. In...Read More
Ira Paine's silver Winchester 1866

The Silver Winchester of Ira Paine: "Master Shooter of the World"

08/12/2016 By Joel R. Kolander   The Man Not many people today know the name of Ira A. Paine. No further proof of that fact...Read More
Buck Taylor and his Colt SAA

Buck Taylor: The True King of the Cowboys

June 17, 2016 By Joel Kolander If you run a quick online search for "King of the Cowboys" the results are packed with websites featuring...Read More
RIAC on Instagram

Rock Island Auction's Social Media Pages

06-10-2016 By Joel Kolander Here at Rock Island Auction Company, we try to keep people abreast of what we're doing via social media, or at...Read More
Historic Gold-Quartz Inset Gold Headed Walking Stick with 1856 San Francisco Inscription and Jeweler Marking

Top Collector Firearms: 2016 April Premiere

Joel Kolander 06/03/2016 By now many of you have already heard the news. It has been seen in Maxim magazine, the Washington Times, American Rifleman, GunsAmerica, TheFirearmBlog, ABC News, and a...Read More
Battle of Lake Erie

Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry: The Hero of Lake Erie

Joel Kolander 04/22/2016 Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, often simply referred to as Commodore Perry is a name that sounds familiar to many, but who few...Read More
Historic Diamond Monogrammed Sword of Henry Humphrey

Swords with Incredible Stories

Joel Kolander 04/15/2016 With all the incredible swords in this auction, writing an article to highlight them all is almost a fallacy in itself. Multiple...Read More

German Lugers-The Golden Luger: A Gift Between Two Nazis.

04-08-16 By Joel Kolander Luger Collectors, history is a funny thing. As hard as we humans try to document it, the facts of the matter...Read More
What is a wheellock?

What is a Wheellock Mechanism?

04-01-2016 By Joel Kolander Many consider the development of semi-automatic firearms in the 20th and late 19th centuries to be the last great boom of...Read More
Rare, Historic, and Deluxe Tiffany & Co. Smith & Wesson .32 Double Action 4th Model Revolver Exhibited by the Factory at the 1893 "World's Columbian Exposition" in Chicago with Factory Letter

Collector Firearms Of The 1893 Columbian Exposition

Joel Kolander 03/18/2016 In 1889, a structure was constructed from a lattice-work of iron and placed in Paris squarely at the entrance of the 1889...Read More
John Clough & Son Retailer Marked Beaumont-Adams Double Action Percussion Revolver

Adams Patent: The First Double Action Revolver

Joel Kolander 02/19/2016 There are a lot of "firsts" in the world of firearms and with those "firsts" comes a great deal of misinformation and...Read More

The Prize for Capturing Geronimo, Part II

02-09-16 By Joel Kolander It may have been winter in 1885-1886, but George Crook was hot under the collar. As the head of the Department...Read More
A. B. "Sug" Robertson

The Self-Made Cattle Baron

Joel Kolander 01/29/2016 f there is one man that better symbolizes the American West and the American Dream simultaneously than A. B. Robertson, I have...Read More

The Prize for Capturing Geronimo, Part I

01-21-16 By Joel Kolander Lieutenant Colonel George Crook was not having a good time. Everything should have been falling in to place.  He was a...Read More
Serial Number 12 Hand Gun

Announcing The Bretherton Collection

Joel Kiolander 12/24/2015 Rock Island Auction Company is proud and deeply honored to have been chosen to market at auction the legendary Robert “The Bear”...Read More
Lot 1262: Important, Fresh and Extremely Significant Middle Eastern Treasure: 15th Century Shirt of Mail and Plate with Elaborate Gold Koftgari Decorated Plate Reinforcement with the Property Stamp from the Janissary Arsenal at the Hagia Irene Church in Istanbul with Inscription that Appears to Bear the name of the Recipient: Qaytbay Mamluk Sultan of Egypt 1468-1496

Top Guns: 2015 December Premiere

Joel Kolander 12/16/2015 Time to review the top guns of our 2015 December Premiere Firearms Auction, and the event was HUGE. In case you hadn't...Read More

The Surprisingly Modern Colt 1903

11-20-15 By Joel Kolander   At the 2015 Shot Show in Las Vegas there was the usual hullabaloo around a lot of new guns and...Read More
Lot 3084: Historic Dolland Brass Spyglass Inscribed "G. Washington, Mt. Vernon" with Notarized Letter of Family Provenance from William Lanier Washington with Case

George Washington's Telescope

Joel Kolander 11/13/2015 To claim an item as George Washington's is nearly as American as the Pater Patriae himself. As was shown in our story...Read More
Historic Cased Tintype of a Young Man

More Museum Worthy Pieces

Joel Kolander 11/6/2015 You may recall our article from this past August entitled, "Five Guns that Belong in The Met." It focused on some stunning...Read More
John Brown

John Brown's Raid at Harpers Ferry

Joel Kolander 10/16/2015 November 7, 1837 was a turning point for John Brown. It was on that date that abolitionist publisher Elijah Parish Lovejoy was...Read More
Kentucky Flintlock Rifle 62

The First Truly American Firearm: The Kentucky Rifle

Seth Isaacson 10/22/2015 In the Pennsylvania countryside in the early 18th century, a uniquely American firearm was born that helped thirteen separate colonies defeat the...Read More
Attractive Panel Scene Engraved Winchester Model 1866 Carbine

Winchester 1866: A Smart Collector's Choice

Joel Kolander 10/30/2015 If you've been collecting firearms for even a small amount of time, you know about the iconic Winchester Model 1866 rifle. A...Read More
"Sauk & Meskwaki Indians" by Karl Bodmer

Rock Island Arsenal: Origin

Joel Kolander 10/01/2015 The Rock Island Arsenal has long been a seat of the locale known as the Quad Cities Area. Those few acres of...Read More
Lot 3501: Excellent Nazi Party Leader Walther PPK Semi-Automatic Pistol Rig with Party Leader Leather Holster, NSDAP Manual and Post-War Walther Case

Top Guns: 2015 September Premiere Auction

Joel Kolander 09/24/2015 Here we go again, fellow firearms collectors! Another successful auction and another recap that shows you the highlights, over achievers and most...Read More
World Class Kentucky Rifles

The Piedmont Collection of World Class Kentucky Rifles

Joel Kolander 09/04/2015 They go by many names: Kentucky rifles, American longrifles, Pennsylvania rifles, and so on, but they all reference a single style of...Read More
1930 Dayton Bank Robbery

Bank Robbery Turned Gangster-Era Shootout

08/28/2015 By Joel Kolander   The Union Trust Co. Bank had a branch located on Xenia Avenue in Dayton, OH, that had been robbed three...Read More
Dillinger's Tommy Gun?

Did This Tommy Gun Rob A Bank?

08/21/2015 By Joel Kolander When RIAC received a very fine condition Thompson submachine gun for our 2015 September Premiere Auction, it came with a pretty...Read More
French Flintlock Pistol 60

5 Guns That Belong In the Met

Joel Kolander 08/14/2015 If you have an interest in gun or art collecting, you know that the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City...Read More
Colt 1851 Navy Revolver 36 percussion

The Admiral, The King, & The Inventor

Joel Kolander 08/06/2015 Think of the "action movie cop" stereotype. You know, the one who refuses to play by the rules, but is so good...Read More
M2A2 Terra Star

Arsenal of Innovation - Part II

Joel Kolander 07/24/2015 Our previous article on the Rock Island Arsenal covered a portion of the goods produced by the industrious island. I began writing...Read More
The Putnam Museum in Davenport, IA

An Arsenal of Innovation, Part I

Joel Kolander 07/17/2015 When I began to research different aspects of the Rock Island Arsenal for our ongoing series of articles covering the island, I...Read More
Lot 4370: Ten Knives

Top Guns: 2015 June Regional Auction

Joel Kolander 07/9/2015 Here we go again, collector friends! These are some of the heavy hitters, growing trends, and unexpected performers from 2015 June Regional...Read More

John F. Kennedy's M1 Garand Rifle

06-30-15 By Joel Kolander The War Department Appropriations Bill of 1903 established many things, but the one that begins our story today is its founding...Read More
Quarters One of RIA

Introduction to the Rock Island Arsenal

Joel Kolander 06/18/2015 Rock Island, Illinois is an area with a fascinating history. Its location on the banks of the mighty Mississippi River made it...Read More
Photo of Quality Control Check from 1941

Inland M1 Carbines: Past and Present

Joel Kolander 06/04/2015 The rumblings of a modern production M1 carbine from the newly founded Inland Manufacturing have been around since October of last year....Read More
Engraved New Haven Arms Company Henry Lever Action Rifle

Which Winchester Will Win?

Joel Kolander 05/29/2015 After our auctions we've been writing articles to let you know what the top dollar guns are in their respective genres, as...Read More
VL caseless ammunition size comparison

Daisy-Heddon V/L Rifle - The Caseless Ammo .22

By Joel R. Kolander May 14, 2015 You can also watch our video on this rife by clicking here.   When you heard this was...Read More
Colt Third Model Derringer with Leather Case

Dashing Antique Derringers

Joel Kolander 04/17/2015 Concealed carry is a big topic in the firearms community right now. People discuss which calibers are best, which position is safest...Read More
Abraham Lincoln in 1865 by Alexander Gardner - Library of Congress

150 Years: The Lincoln Assassination

Joel Kolander 04/08/2015   One hundred and fifty years ago on April 14, our country was changed forever by a single gun shot to a...Read More
Historic Chest Decorated with Finely Inlaid Scenes from Richard Wagner's Opera Siegfried

Gifts of the Third Reich

Joel Kolander 04/03/2015 When you auction as many firearms as we do, and with Germany being a primary participant in one of last century's largest...Read More
RIAC Gavel Gun Logo

Auction Bidder Notifications

  Since 2015, Rock Island Auction Company has offered our helpful Bidder Notifications service to customers. This service is only performed by the largest auction...Read More
Colt 1877 Thunderer Revolver 41 LC

Colt Family Tragedy: Caldwell Hart Colt

Joel Kolander 03/26/2015   Samuel Colt and his contributions to a young nation are nearly mythic in scale. People speak of Col. Colt in reverent...Read More
Ross barricaded in attack.

Wells Fargo's Shotgun Messenger, "Hold the Fort" Aaron Ross

Seth Isaacson 03/19/2015   The history of the American West is perhaps the most mythologized aspect of our nation’s past. The very mention of “the...Read More
An assortment of fine lugers

A Lifetime of Lugers

Joel Kolander 03/05/2015 This article, appropriately enough, is being distributed on Georg Luger's birthday, March 6. It is the 166th anniversary of the occasion. Happy...Read More
Hunting dog in camo cover

A North Dakota Waterfowl Hunt

Rick Henley 02/12/2015 "I Hope It's Colder Next Time..." 70 degrees and sunny is normally perfect vacation weather for me, except when that vacation is...Read More
Lot 5425: Six Norinco SKS Semi-Automatic Rifles with Gatling Type Fixture

Oddities of the 2015 February Regional Auction

Joel Kolander 2/06/2015 The appeal of firearms is different things to different people. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder after all, and one...Read More

Why is the Colt Python So Popular?

01-23-15 By Joel Kolander Around Rock Island Auction Company, classic firearms are a way of life. Whether it's guns from the Old West, Class III...Read More
Finely Engraved German Kowar Single Shot Schuetzen Rifle with Relief Carved Stock

An Engraving Mystery

Joel Kolander 01/08/2015 In our December 2014 Premiere Firearms Auction there was a gun which I found to be very curious. Far from any area...Read More
Portrait of Buffalo Bill

Guns Close to Buffalo Bill

Joel Kolander 11/19/2014 Few names conjure up images of the Wild West quicker than that of Buffalo Bill Cody. Born less than 30 miles from...Read More
Lot 3117: Elaborate Cased Exhibition Grade Silver and Gold Inlaid LeFauche pinfire revolvers.

Museum Quality Historic Pieces - Antique Guns, Swords, and More

Joel Kolander 11/08/2014 Rock Island Auction Company is always offering some rather stunning arms: mint condition antiques, rare variations, gorgeous special order arms, classic military...Read More
An assortment of impressive swords

A Cutting Edge Collection

Joel Kolander 11/06/2014 Rock Island Auction Company is fortunate enough to be entrusted with prized firearms collections at each and every auction. The December 2014...Read More
Magnificent Cased Pair of Devisme Percussion Exhibition Pistols

Devilish Devisme Pistols

Joel Kolander 10/30/2014 "By the pricking of my thumbs, Something wicked this way comes."   Halloween is a time of year with a history that...Read More
Spectacular Winchester Factory Presentation, Deluxe, Silver-Plated Model 1866 Lever Action Rifle

The Silver Standard of Winchesters

Joel Kolander 10/23/2014 Gold inlaid Winchesters always attract attention at auction. Most times, that gold embellishment was reserved for special presentation or exhibition pieces that...Read More
Walch John Pocket Pistol 31 percussion barrel

Fantastic Flops: The Walch Revolvers

Joel Kolander 10/8/2014 Typically, we like to write about the guns that will be appearing in an upcoming auction. Not only do we hope to...Read More
Walther PP Pistol 7.65 mm auto

Who Made It Better - PP vs 1911

Joel Kolander 09/04/2014 As gun collectors we love to debate. AK or AR? 9mm or .40? Remington 870 or Mossberg 500? '73 Colt or '73...Read More
Very Rare Factory Presentation Cased "Kolibri" Semi-Automatic Pistol with Ammunition

Good Things Come in Pairs: Hummingbirds

Joel Kolander 08/27/2014 The title of today's article may have more than a few collectors scratching their heads. "What on earth do hummingbirds have to...Read More
Historic Tiffany & Company 1852 Pattern Naval Officer Sword

Good Things Come in Pairs: Artisan Blades

Joel Kolander 08/21/2014 It's not all guns here at Rock Island Auction Company. As many of you are already aware, RIAC also sells a great...Read More
Pair of Jean Jaley Flintlock Pistols

Good Things Come in Pairs: Artisan Pistol Sets

Joel Kolander 08/14/2014 If you've been reading articles in the last month, you know that Rock Island Auction Company has been taking a closer look...Read More
Canadian troops go "over the top" during the Battle of Vimy Ridge

Centennial of the Great War

Joel Kolander 08/07/2014 "I foresee that very soon I shall be overwhelmed by the pressure forced upon me and be forced to take extreme measures...Read More
Super Rare Original Fully Automatic Class III/NFA World War II German C.G. Haenel Manufactured Mkb.42(H) Assault Rifle with Original Sheet Metal Sniper Scope Mount and ZF41/1 Sniper Scope

Good Things Come in Pairs: German Rarities

Joel Kolander 07/31/2014 Thanks to two studious German military collectors, Rock Island Auction Company has amassed a German Military arms collection that will stun enthusiasts,...Read More
Winchester 1866 Rifle 44 RF

Good Things Come in Pairs: John Ulrich

Joel Kolander 07/17/2014 They say that "good things come in pairs," so why should Rock Island Auction Company be any exception to this long-lived idiom?...Read More
Lot 2100: Revolutionary War Style Verbruggen Three Pound "Grasshopper" Cannon with Carriage

Technology of the Revolutionary War

Joel Kolander 07/02/2014 As we celebrate this Independence Day weekend, let's examine one of the weapons used on the battlefields that forged this nation that...Read More
Jefferson Davis Escaping in a petticoat cartoon

The Flight of Jefferson Davis

Joel Kolander 06/26/2014 By April 1865, the Civil War was spinning out of control for the Confederate States of America. The first day of that...Read More
London Armory Kerr Revolver 44

The First & Last Confederate President

Joel Kolander 06/16/2014 Today, Jefferson Davis is remembered by many as the enemy of the United States for his role as the first and only...Read More
Newpaper that reads, "Invasion: Allies Pouring into Northern France"

70th Anniversary of D-Day

Joel Kolander 06/06/2014 By the time you read this, much will already have been published about the men who landed in Normandy, France on what...Read More
T.I.C. Commercial Agency Fighting Kit

Wild Days in Hell's Half Acre

Joel Kolander 05/22/2014 Lots of people and places of the Old West get spun into tales of "Pecos Bill" size proportions. One minute someone is...Read More
Mug shot from the Dallas Police Department of Clyde Barrow.

The Revolver of Clyde Barrow

Joel Kolander 04/21/2014 Clyde Barrow, the latter half of the infamous 'Bonnie & Clyde,' is one of most recognizable names from the Depression Era's list...Read More
nickel-plated Colt 1877

Colt Lightnings & Thunderers

Joel Kolander 04/17/2014 Well, friends this is it. The last article of our 9-part series that shows off the exciting, historic, spectacular, and beautiful firearms...Read More
Le Page shotgun collage

Luxurious Le Page Shotguns

Joel Kolander 04/16/2014 Collector friends, you are in for a treat today. We have for you two spectacular shotguns from Parisian gunsmith Le Page. These...Read More
New Haven Arms Co. Volcanic Rifle 41 Volcanic

Samuel Colt's Henry Rifle

Joel Kolander 04/15/2014 Our first item truly takes its place not only as a star of this article, or even of this genre, but as...Read More
Colt 1911 Pistol 45 ACP

Incomparable Cartridge Colts

Joel Kolander 04/14/2014 Our last article about two particularly famous Colt revolvers was enough to get Colt collectors' hearts pumping. We can't promise that today's...Read More
Winchester Model 1866 Musket with Bayonet

Evolution and Variations of the Winchester 1866

Joel Kolander 04/9/2014 Did our title grab your attention? It should have! One of the reasons we are so elated about our May 2014 Premiere...Read More
Set of Three Consecutively Serial Numbered Holland & Holland

Superior Sporting Arms

Joel Kolander 04/04/2014 Why waste time? Let's get things started right and show you this amazing trio of original, cased Holland & Holland engraved Royal...Read More
Winchester Model 71 lever action rifle

Winchester Gold Standard

Joel Kolander 03/19/2014 We have recently been receiving such extraordinary, high quality, rare, and historic pieces that we simply cannot keep them to ourselves! For...Read More
World War I soldiers holding their handguns

1911s of the First World War

Joel Kolander 02/27/2014 U.S. military arms are popular with all levels of collectors. Whether you want a M1 Garand to take out and shoot, a...Read More
Rare World War II U.S. Singer Manufacturing Company Model 1911A1 Semi-Automatic Pistol

1911s of the Second World War

Joel Kolander 02/14/2014 As we all know, when American decided to enter World War II after the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor it was...Read More

The Life of A Gun Collector, Part III

Gun Collector Part III 02-07-14 By Joel R. Kolander If you progress to the third and final stage of firearms collecting, you, and your collection,...Read More
One of their more recognizable ads.

Why The Iver Johnson Deserves Some Respect

Joel Kolander 01/30/2014 When one mentions old firearms manufacturer Iver Johnson, it's often in a way that doesn't garner much respect.  One might elicit a...Read More

The Life of a Gun Collector, Part II

01-24-14 By Joel R. Kolander As covered in the first segment of this series, there are different stages to collecting. Despite the fact that there...Read More

The Life of a Gun Collector, Part I

01-10-14 By Joel R. Kolander Gun Collector Tips From The Pros The sun is rising, warming the cool morning air, and providing a halo for...Read More
Engraved Winchester Second Model 1873 Saddle Ring Carbine

Early Winchester Rifles in Our Regional Auction

Joel Kolander 12/19/2013 Our December Premiere Auction has just finished and while we'd love to bask in its results for a little while there are...Read More

Relics of the Reich

Joel Kolander 11/22/2013 More often that not, if someone wants to see an important or unique item from history, they have to go to a...Read More
4th Cavalry at Fort Leavenworth

Company K Colt: An Attic Treasure

Joel Kolander 11/14/2013 On January 23, 1873 an order was placed by the U.S. Government to Colt Manufacturing for 8,000 revolvers "of the new model."...Read More
JFK in the famous rocking chair

RIAC Remembers the 50th Year of JFK's Assassination

Joel Kolander 10/30/2013 This November 22 will mark the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's assassination. Surely that month will provide an abundance of...Read More

The Unsung Trapdoor Rifle

10-25-13 By Joel Kolander In terms of American military long arms very little attention is given to a predecessor of the much heralded M1903 and...Read More
Colt Python

Stocks, Bonds, or Barrels?

Joel Kolander 10/18/2013 Ask any firearms collector if guns are a good investment and you're bound to receive a response in the affirmative. It's not...Read More
Browning Arms High Power Pistol 9 mm Luger Engraved Plate

Harrowing Histories

Joel Kolander 08/29/2013 Humanity's fascination with villains goes back almost as far as written language itself. Names such as Herod the Great, Nero, Attila the...Read More
Showing a close up of the sight safety and a inconspicuous looking slide release lever at lower left.

John Browning & The Birth of the Model 1911

Joel Kolander 08/22/2013 The sight of a M1911 pistol evokes over 100 years of firearms history in a single glance. Carried on the hips of...Read More
George Custard

Did Custer Die in this Coat?

Joel Kolander 08/16/2013 "I am not impetuous or impulsive. I resent that. Everything that I have ever done has been the result of the study...Read More
Butch Cassidy Dressed Well

Butch Cassidy's Colt and the End of the Wild West

Joel Kolander 08/9/2013 It is no coincidence that the Old West and gun collecting go hand in hand. For firearms manufacturers, it was a time...Read More
Colt 1860 Revolver 44 percussion

Rare & Unparalleled Colt 1860s

Joel Kolander 07/26/2013 Colt has long led the way in collectable firearms. Whether it's Walkers, Patersons, Peacemakers, or Londons, people want to collect Colt firearms....Read More
Smith & Wesson 44 DA Revolver 44 Russian

From the 1893 Columbia Exhibition to the Gold Mines of Nevada

Joel Kolander 07/03/2013 The most exciting part of collecting firearms is the histories. That's right, plural. Multiple histories. The first being the history of a...Read More

5 Things You Might Not Know About Antique Firearms

06-20-13 By Joel Kolander On any given news day, one sure hears an awful lot about modern guns.  The term "assault weapons" gets thrown around...Read More
Factory Engraved William Marston Triple-Barrel Derringer with Ivory Grips and Four-Inch Barrels

5 Things You Might Not Know About Antique Firearms

Joel Kolander 06/14/2013   Here at Rock Island Auction Company we see weapons of all shapes and sizes, from impressive carriage-mounted Gatling guns to the...Read More
German Marked Camera and Binoculars, Two Gravity Knives and an Inert M72A2 LAW Launch Tube

A Bunch of "BOOM!"

Joel Kolander 06/12/2013 Note: All explosives are inert. When walking through our warehouse, sometimes an item is so uncommon it jumps out at you and...Read More
Factory Engraved, Serial #1, Colt "Second Generation" Model 1877 "Bulldog" Gatling battery gun

Beware of Dog

Joel Kolander 04/29/2013 Here's a confession for you: today's article isn't even about a weapon that Rock Island Auction Company is putting up for bid....Read More
Jesse James

Historic Antique Spurs

Joel Kolander 04/11/2013 When you speak of the American West certain names seem to keep coming up: Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp, "Wild Bill" Hickok,...Read More

The Pedersen Device

03-15-13 By Joel Kolander We here at RIAC love Winchester rifles and rightly so.  Only one manufacturer can claim the title "the gun that won the West,"...Read More
Also notice the dashes before and after the text. This was gradually omitted after #100,000 (Madis, 423)

Brothers from Another Mother?

Joel Kolander 03/06/2013 "Winchesters with a number of special and deluxe features are becoming impossible to find as we are rapidly learning. Collectors are partial...Read More