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A friend sent me some pictures of a gun that has been in his family, asking if I knew what it is, and what it's worth. I know less than nothing about 19th century Colts. Can anyone help?

Thanks in advance.







[This message has been edited by Michael Stern (edited 11-10-2004).]
 

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I'm no Colt black powder expert, but except for the short loading lever, it sorta looks like the 1851 Navy model.
Any idea what the caliber, barrel length, or markings might be? The Navy model was 36 caliber, with (I think) a 7.5 inch barrel.
 

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I'm no black powder expert either, but it sure looks like an 1851 Navy, probably a third model due to the small brass trigger guard. Just a guess. Can you get the serial number and the barrel markings?

------------------
Dick

There is a word sweeter than mother, home or heaven--
That word is Liberty.
 

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From the position of the locking slots on the cylinder and the nipples, it appears to be a 5 shot revolver. The 1851 Navies were 6 shots. If it is a 5 shot revolver, it's either an 1849 Pocket Model or an 1862 Pocket Navy.

[This message has been edited by Thiokol (edited 11-10-2004).]
 

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What got me was the barrel. At first I thought all the Pocket models had 4 1/2" barrels. Some research has shown that they were also in 5 1/2" and 6 1/2" lenghts also. The pictured model does look like it has a 7 1/2" barrel though. It is a 5 shooter like Thiokol says as the 6 shooters have the bolt cuts directly over the chamber.
With the unfluted cylinder it should be a Pocket Navy.
 

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Just noticed the sheet of paper used as a background for the photo. Assuming it's a standard 8.5in X 11in sheet, the proportions would support the 5.5 inch barrel guesstimate, and possibly being one of the "pocket" versions of the Navy model.
 

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Who says it's a Colt? Are there any markings to indicate this?
The Confederates made several copies of the Colt during the War of Southern Treason.
Also, the Europeans made copies of the popular Colt revolvers, particularly Belgium. This was clearly against Colt's international patents but it went on for some time, causing Sam Colt a considerable problem.
Please give us the dimensions and any numbers or lettering on this revolver. It will help immensely to identify it.
 

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I'm the Son-in-Law of the owner. Thank you all for your opinions...here's more info:

Gun was purchase in Austria by the owner's Great Grandfather about 1860. Serial # on the frame is 280,000. Serial number on the barrel is 70,182. Another inscription on the barrel is: "Samuel Colt, New York, U.S. America". Checking with the Colt Firearms office in Hartford CT, they said it was an 1849 pocket revolver issued from the factory in 1852. Any information regarding the value would be appreciated....I have more pictures and can e-mail them to interested parties.

Thanks again for all your help. Paul
 

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Hi folks:

My in-laws are interested in selling this piece...would appreciate hearing from anyone with an interest or advice on best way to establish a fair value and sell. Gun is currently located in North Carolina.

Thanks in advance for your consideration.
 

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You're going to have to find a REAL expert to appraise this since original black powder Colt's bring HIGH prices.

My older copy of the "Blue Book of Gun Values" shows the following pricing:

First Model 1849 Colt Pocket Model.
In 50% condition: $1000. In 90%- $2650.

A Second Model in 50%- $1150. In 90%- 3200.

The Wells Fargo Model with no loading lever and round trigger guard in 50%- $1900. In 90%- $7700.

As you can see, actual condition and which model it is has a big effect on prices.

ONLY a real expert is going to be able to give you a firm idea of value.
I'm sure there's someone in the North Carolina region that is a verified Colt-qualified appraiser.

You're only other option, is to take a "SWAG" as close as you can as to the actual condition and use a Blue Book to assign a price.

You can buy a current Blue Book at most better book stores, or you can order it from Amazon, or most local dealers can order it.

The Blue Book has an extensive section on how to go about determining percent of finish and how to assign a value.
 
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