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Based on my limited research, I have an extremely rare 1st Gen SAA. I wanted to confirm a few things with some experts and try and get an approximate value to decide if I should get it appraised. From what I have read, less than 1% of 1st Gen SAAs were engraved by Colt. On top of that, I read that there are so few that were done in silver and gold that they do not even have records of how many were made (less than 10 per year). If this is true, I guess this is indeed a very rare gun. I have the letter from Colt that my dad sent off and paid the money for before he passed the gun down to me. Here are the details on the gun from the letter (picture also included):

Serial # 347675
Caliber: .38/40
Barrel Length: 5 1/2
Finish: Silver
Type of Stocks: Rubber
Factory Engraved: Yes, along with Gold Inlay on the cylinder
Sold To: Anderson Brothers
Shipped To: Shapleigh Hardware Company
Address: St. Louis, Missouri
Date of Shipment: October 2, 1925
Colt Factory Order: #10347/1

This has been passed down through 4 generations to me from when it was originally purchased. Our understanding is that it is a 1922 model (when it was ordered) vs when it was completed and finally shipped in 1925. I have what we believed to be the original grips as well as the custom ordered mother of pearl longhorn design with red ruby stones for eyes that were ordered and purchased along with the gun.

Final piece of information I wanted to confirm is that I read that to plate the gun in silver, Colt first had to plate it in gold and then plate the silver on top of the gold, which also allowed them to have the gold exposed on the concave portion of the cylinder where the softer gold would be more protected (pictured). Also, in that same picture are the gold chevron inlays on the cylinder. Is this true? the gun is silver with gold finish underneath?

Thank you for any help you can provide. Any idea on the value? I am thinking I should get it appraised and filed with my insurance company.

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Welcome to the COLT Forum from the Cradle Of Liberty...Pennsylvania !!




Enjoy Our Community TexasRob...


Congrats on scoring that beauty !!


.
 

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I am not an expert but I don't believe that to plate the gun in silver, Colt first had to plate it in gold and then plate the silver on top of the gold... actually it is rather the opposite : A gold finish was applied over silver plating.
 

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TexasRob - Check out this thread about a Glahn engraved SAA. Looks quite similar to yours.
- Bruce in Ohio
 

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Discussion Starter #6
TexasRob - Check out this thread about a Glahn engraved SAA. Looks quite similar to yours.
- Bruce in Ohio
I saw that this morning. Very cool. I noticed it was in nickel rather than silver like mine, but it was factory engraved and the grips are very similar. I am wondering if since my gun is silver with gold accents if it puts it in an entirely different category from a collector perspective?
 

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I can't view that posting on their website. Might be gone. I do see that it says factory engraved, but my question would be is it nickel? The letter from Colt would say. My understanding is that the nickel finish was pretty common, but ones done with a silver finish are very, very rare. Only a few made per year. I tried searching for that lot number and that description on rockislandauction.com but could not find anything.
 

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I think yours would be much more rare.
I'll check it out, thanks. I have come across several silver engraved 1st gen SAA examples, but they all seem to have left the colt factory with a blued finish and were silver plated and engraved after they were acquired.
 

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Yours certainly has much more rare finish. Maybe better, more original finish also. But the RIA gun is black powder era. So, maybe not apples to apples. COLTSIXGUNS hopefully will chime in and tell you much more than I ever could. One thing I know with certainty is that I like and wish it were mine!
 

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Wow grand entrance and a beautiful gun, welcome to the collective from Orlando.
 

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I'm certainly no expert but that is one outstanding Colt and a treasured heirloom. Congrats!! Can't see how it could be worth less than 50K but again, I'm no expert. Yes, have it insured and appraised from someone recommended by the guys on this forum. You came to right place for knowledge. That's why I'm here.
 

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Does anyone know if “Anderson Bro’s” had anything to do with A.J. Anderson from Fort Worth? That could be a key to value.
Should be able to look through the book on Colt Engraving to see if you can find an example of the engraving that is on that cylinder.

The silver finish is rare. With it being .38-40 & 5 1/2” it would not typically go as high as a 45 or 44 with a short barrel, but you never know, on any given day.....
 
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