Inherited engraved SAA .41
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  1. #191
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    You need to start thinking “who had that kind of money at the time?”.
    then start thinking it was a gift. Hmmmm but for whom?
    And why would they deserve such a gift?
    If you haven’t get a copy of the Banditti of the Plains. It will open your eyes to lots of what could be.
    (My local library has a original copy but you have to read it in the building)
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banditti_of_the_Plains
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  2. #192
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    That is a question that is not lost on me, Bill.. and I'll follow your advice.

    Some of the options currently considered are:
    -For store protection. Munkres and Mather were doing pretty darn well themselves. If the lynching story holds true, they could have purchased it for themselves or one or the other.
    -Mr Smith: I am waiting for the full letter to come in after the librarian returns from vacation. I never got to see the portion of the letter (if there is one) that addresses whether or not the pearl handled, ornamated revolver made it back to the store after he took it.
    -A purchase for one of the "cattle barons". In order to avoid a dust up, Munkres told Smith the revolver was not for sale, and that it was already sold to a fellow. Munkres was supposedly "great friends with one of big ranchers, Frank Canton. As he and Mather hauled freight for Robert Foote (see newspaper advertisement) they could have just as easily done the same for, or had relations with the other big ranchers.
    -The fellow Munkres told Smith it was for
    -A reward/pmt by someone for another person who might have played a role in the lynching/killing of the rustlers
    -Heck, and number of other reasons.... While this revolved fits the description of the one in the Burritt story, this one might have come to the store later on.

    -For one of the Mason's, possibly someone in the organisation Mather was a charter member of was getting a promotion or was retiring
    sumthin_nu

  3. #193
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    While this revolved fits the description of the one in the Burritt story, this one might have come to the store later on.



    I missed that some how . Can you repeat what was written? One thing you can count on...these guns were rare then (as now) and expensive. If you have a description of a pearl handled engraved gun from that area and that time frame I suspect a home run.

    Bill's offering of "follow the money" is good. But this gun is past the money mark and into something special for an occasion or as a gift for something special......might have been a birthday, retirement or a killing. Keep on digging!

    A back track from the info I saw you posted previous might well offer more info that supposed off hand.

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  5. #194
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    I have two instances of "pearl handled" or "pearl handle and ornamented". The first is on Page 252 of The War on Powder River. The 2nd, and tied directly to the Munkres Hardware store is in the letter to the President of the WSGA, the Hon. W.R. Stoll of Cheyenne, Wyoming from Charles H. Burritt, a respected lawyer and onetime Mayor of Buffalo who recounts the story involving the "pearl handle and ornamented and was priced at $27.50" in the display at Munkres and Mather Hardware.

    CharlesBurritlettergunscan0001.pdf
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    sumthin_nu

  6. #195
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    Others can disagee. But I think you have "your pistol" right there. The .41 you have is simply too rare, too unique (any where at the time just as they are now) and likely the only one ever shipped to Buffalo to discount IMO.

    I wouldn't stop digging but I think you have your gun right there linked to men and a moment in history.
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  7. #196
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    You might very well be right on both counts, Cozmo. Like you said, I can't stop digging yet, or it'll just be another story!

    I also think that there is a possibility that if I track the geneology backwards from the deed issued by the folks that lived in IL, I might just way back to where two individuals were located in the same area. I dunno..... just seems like its worth chasing down.
    sumthin_nu

  8. #197
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    Quote Originally Posted by sumthin_nu
    ...I also think that there is a possibility that if I track the geneology backwards from the deed issued by the folks that lived in IL, I might just way back to where two individuals were located in the same area....

    Agreed. I did a similar search some time back and found the original document like the letter you just posted offered a host of details I didn't pick up until I had read and reread it many times over. Past that letter I think the IL folks surely need to be tracked down to learn more there. Looks to me you are doing it right.

    But I can't emphasize enough just how rare these guns were back in the day. Way, way more rare than they are today. Having a letter describing a similar gun in the same hardware store during the same time period is damn near definitive just for those reasons. In my mind? Solid enough evidence to say THIS is the gun.
    Last edited by Cozmo; 08-18-2019 at 07:05 PM.
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  9. #198
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    Thanks, Cozmo! I can say that I did not realize the true rareness during that time frame. I agree though that with there being only 1 known SAA to ship to Buffalo, and the fact that it was ornamented with pearl handle, compounds that rarity even further.

    It may be the week after next when I get the full letter.

    Another path I am following is completing as much research on George Munkres and Eugene B Mather, including their holdings (ranch/mine/hardware store etc.). It is interesting to learn that Mr Mather was trustworthy enough to be selected or elected, however that process works, as the receiver of funds from the Federal Government on behalf of Johnson County, and was also involved in providing formal construction inspections, on several building still existing today, such as the library and a school.
    sumthin_nu

  10. #199
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    Henry Smith?

    Henry Smith? Too bad the name is so common...but the name of the "Texas Invaders" is well known.
    May 19, 1892...we know exactly where Henry Smith and a fancy Pearl handled Colt was if I am readying that letter correctly.

    "41 Caliber 4 3/4 with Pearl Grips
    Nickel Plated
    Factory Engraved
    Shipped on April 7, 1892 to Munkres and Mathers in Buffalo Wyoming."

    I'd be wanting to know what happened to Mr. Smith.

    By your letter the town Marshal, Mitchell, disarmed Smith at least once by my reading, may be twice in a few short minutes while Smith was in possession of that same pearl handled gun. Eventually Smith made it out of town with his guns (again by my reading of the letter) with the pearl handled gun still in tow.

    I believe Henry Smith, by his own word admitted bush wacker and killer, was the first "owner" of your pearl handled Colt.


    Johnson Co, "Texas Invaders" working for the large cattle holders.
    Last edited by Cozmo; 08-18-2019 at 07:06 PM.
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  11. #200
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    Jim.
    You owe it to yourself to make it to Buffalo.
    It’s a great little western town and I have an good friend with great Colt SAA collection there we can drop in on.
    I’m on highway 16...Sweet 16...only 70 miles west...the next town over from Buffalo.

    Ill put ya up for a day or three and we can burn some home grown beef and while you are at it I’ll get ya excited about the happenings of the Spring Creek Raid which my shop is named by.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spring_Creek_raid

    Our canyon is awesome. Took this photo tonight.
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