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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi!
This is my first post to this forum so bear with me.
We have a customer who has a Colt Revolver - SN#30020. We are having a hard time finding any information on the revolver and we are hoping this forum can help us.
When we search the serial number on the Colt website - we belive it is coming back as an 1876 Single Action Army - 45 Colt.
It has all matching serial numbers.
Patent Sept 19, 1871
Patent July 2, 1872
I am posting a link to pictures below. Any information anybody can shed would be incredibly helpful.

Thanks!
http://x.co/2hxcZ
 

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It appears your Colt Model 1873 Single Action Army revolver was produced in 1876. It is well worn with the 7 1/2" barrel. It has the last four digits of the serial number marked on the cylinder. Considering it is almost 140 years old, it looks to be in pretty fair condition. To find out where it started its life after it left the Colt factory, you would need to get a Colt letter from the Colt Archives department. Wheree it went from there will be very hard to determine. Hard to imagine the life it has lived!
 

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It looks like a righteous gun to me. It has just lost its finish from the years or by cleaning. It has not been buffed or abused and has fairly sharp edges and corners. It has worn original wood stocks. The hammer is in the safety notch in your photo and I can see the firing pin which MAY rest on the cartridge primer so it may have some hammer/trigger issues. I lettered one in the 27XXX range so there should be a record of it in the Colt Archives. I think it is a fine piece. Regards.
 

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The caliber is marked as "45 cal" on the rear of the triggerguard, so that answers the caliber question. If it were a 45 Boxer, it would be marked 45B. The first patent date is very strong. Many earlier guns had a very weak 'First Line Patent Date' due to some die problem. According to Keith Cochran's "Colt Peacemaker Encyclopedia" on page 304, the patent markings on your gun are identical to what he calls "Late-first patent date format." On page 17 in that same book, Cochran states that the 'block or Gothic' lettering on the barrel (like on your SAA) was used after serial number 23,000, so yours is correct.
As far as I can tell, you have a well marked, correct early SAA that is well preserved except for the finish/blue. I think it is a very collectable gun. As 'ketch33' states you should ask Colt for a Historical Letter to see where, or to whom, your gun was shipped. The letter will also verify shipping date since some guns were often held in stock for a long period before shipping.
 

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It does look correct from what I can see, but the metal definitely looks cleaned rather than just honest wear. Still a good looking gun, but that will hurt the value of it some. You won't know if Colt has a record of it without contacting them. It isn't uncommon for early guns like that one to be "no record" guns.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks All. I will see if the customer wants to spend the money to send it off to Colt. We hope he does because we'd really like to know more history on it. Any ideas on value?
 

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Thanks All. I will see if the customer wants to spend the money to send it off to Colt. We hope he does because we'd really like to know more history on it. Any ideas on value?
You don't have to send the gun to Colt. Just all the information like serial number, caliber, barrel length and stocks. They can research their shipping records from that information. Cost is $100 (last I knew). I don't think there is any doubt that the gun is in its original shipping configuration so about all you are going to get for the $100 is a shipping destination. That early it most likely will letter as shipped to a NY Distributor (Agent). However, I like to letter them anyway just in case they went to an individual or an exotic destination! Spend the hundred for the info and the letter will help the gun sell if that is the intent. Good luck! (I am not up to speed on value but a guess on my part would be in the $2500-$3000 range.) PS: Send the information (and a check) on the gun to Colt Archives LLC and not to Colt Manufacturing. I think you can get their address from the Colt Website. Their Website should also give the current cost of the service.
 

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Hi!
This is my first post to this forum so bear with me.
We have a customer who has a Colt Revolver - SN#30020. We are having a hard time finding any information on the revolver and we are hoping this forum can help us.
When we search the serial number on the Colt website - we belive it is coming back as an 1876 Single Action Army - 45 Colt.
It has all matching serial numbers.
Patent Sept 19, 1871
Patent July 2, 1872
I am posting a link to pictures below. Any information anybody can shed would be incredibly helpful.

Thanks!
http://x.co/2hxcZ
I'm not going cast doubt on the barrel address as Colt did make some changes in this serial range and it is 2800 numbers earlier than mine but here's what I have on my address. Horizontal line stamping fore and aft of address. Weak down leg on the T in PT. Only have verticle and top horizontal lines on F in FA. Mine has the two line patent date.
This gun would probably sell for 3500.00 + in my neighborhood.
 

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I'm not going cast doubt on the barrel address as Colt did make some changes in this serial range and it is 2800 numbers earlier than mine but here's what I have on my address. Horizontal line stamping fore and aft of address. Weak down leg on the T in PT. Only have verticle and top horizontal lines on F in FA. Mine has the two line patent date.
This gun would probably sell for 3500.00 + in my neighborhood.
Looks good to me Rick, hear is a pick on my sa, shipped july 76, with two line patent date also
tony
 

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Call Colt Archives Hopefully they can Letter your 1876 SAARecords between 1873-1878 are sketchy at best as several records during this period are missing,particularly it seems between 1875-1876, from my personal experience.Some records were destroyed by fires, and in one instance an entire log book of Colt SAA's was stolen and has never been found.
 

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I own Colt Single Action Army number 29651, which is only 369 serial numbers prior to yours. Here is what the letter, from 08 December 1982, states:

Serial number: 29651
Calibre: 45/C
Barrel length: Not listed (It is 7 1/2 inches in length)
Finish: Blue
Type of Stocks: Not listed (They are the original walnut)
Shipped to: Spies Kissam & Co.
Address: New York, N.Y.
Date of shipment: 17 November 1876
Number of same type guns in Shipment: 34

I would suspect yours shipped within a few weeks or months of this firearm.
 

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I own Colt Single Action Army number 29651, which is only 369 serial numbers prior to yours. Here is what the letter, from 08 December 1982, states:

Serial number: 29651
Calibre: 45/C
Barrel length: Not listed (It is 7 1/2 inches in length)
Finish: Blue
Type of Stocks: Not listed (They are the original walnut)
Shipped to: Spies Kissam & Co.
Address: New York, N.Y.
Date of shipment: 17 November 1876
Number of same type guns in Shipment: 34

I would suspect yours shipped within a few weeks or months of this firearm.
And, some pictures:
 

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Tony, What's your serial range. Mine's 32871. Don't have factory letter but DO have Kopec's.
Rick, the sn 21761,its the cased london i posted a few weeks back.all number's match.a real odity.10 numbers away fron one just reciently discovered out hear in oz. (also shipped to england) but that one went in sept 75. mine well atleast the frame, stayed on the shelf and went out in july 76 .( in the so called cancelled shipment) with the block barrel address numbered to the gun but according to paul at colt records,it never returned to the factory,and interrestingly, none of the cancelled guns of july,were in the so called madeup order later in the same year.
an interresting piece,frame 75 manufacture,shipped 76 with second style barrel address.and all matching numbers..so many questions and not enough answers on early colts.
tony
 
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