Member: National Bit, Spur & Saddle Collector's Association and Texas Longhorn Breeders Association of America
Item #C1891 / $27,500.
About This Historic RAC, SEB Revolver from the Last Government Contract:
This one-of-a-kind Lettered Colt is a single action .45 caliber model 1873 revolver, all matching serial numbers 137,187, was shipped from the Hartford, Connecticut plant on January 20, 1891. It is classified as a Late Military Model. This revolver is from the fabled Last Government Contract of September 19, 1890 which brought production of the SAA for the US Government to an end in 1892.
The barrel address shows "COLT'S PT. FA. MFG. Co. HARTFORD, CT. USA". The left front side of the frame is marked COLTS PATENT 1871, 1872 and 1875 in two lines.
All of the visible serial numbers match. A "K" Colt sub-inspection mark is stamped beneath the serial number on the trigger guard and back strap. The full revolver serial number "137187" is stamped on the underside of the frame, trigger guard and back strap. The partial serial number "7187" is stamped on the barrel underneath the ejector housing and on the side of the cylinder.
As is correct for this firearm, the finish is a standard blued with casehardened steel frame and hammer. The Rampant Colt stamp is not present, as that mark was not instituted until much later production - around the 139,000 serial number range. Neither is there a caliber marking on the barrel, for the same reason.
As evidenced by the photos here, all the markings are clear and legible. All serial numbers match - cylinder, barrel, back strap, trigger guard strap, and frame. It is marked US in clear letters on the left side of the frame near the patent numbers. RAC inspected on the bottom of the grips, bottom of the barrel, above the frame serial number and on the rear side area of the cylinder. The inspector initials throughout and the cartouche (RAC) on the right side grips are those of Rinaldo A. Carr, well documented inspector of .38 and .45 caliber Revolvers and Pistols as well as Gatling Guns from 1889 to 1909. The inspector cartouche (SEB) on the left side grips, below the date '1891', is that of Capt. Sebastian English Blunt, a highly respected inspector of Colt Revolvers during the same period.
RAC Rinaldo A. Carr (Inspector Cartouche) on right grips
"SEB" Stanhope English Blunt (Inspector Cartouche) and year '1891' on left grips
The mechanics of this gun are solid and crisp. All stages of cocking are properly functional. The firing mechanism releases the trigger properly. The sight is is properly feathered. The frame is case-colored and the remainder of the gun is blued in the military style. The fine grips are oil-stained walnut, showing appropriate use but not damage, with inspector's cartouches and dated 1891. The gun is in overall Very Good condition showing the original blue in protected areas of the barrel, trigger guard, cylinder and frame with the balance gone to an appropriate grey patina. There are a few scattered spots of pitting and erosion which are limited to the barrel. It has a very good bore, crisp action and sharp markings.
The Military Colts are identified by the "US" on the frame, the inspector's stamps on all appropriate parts (R.A.C. and the Cartouche of Rinaldo A. Carr and Stanhope English Blunt) and 'K' for replacement parts. In 1895 - 1896, the government returned 2000 SAA revolvers to Colt's to be refurbished. Only 800 of them were issued to the New York Militia with the 7 1/2" barrel. The serial number of this revolver is in the New York Militia range. The year of manufacture is not only in the left grips, but identified through Single Action Army Revolver manufacture date by serial number. Single Action Army Revolvers manufactured in the year 1891 began with Serial Number 136,000. Serial Numbers for Single Action Army Revolvers manufactured in 1892 began with 144,000. The Serial Number of this gun is 137187, placing it solidly within 1891.
This is a Lettered Martial Colt bearing all the proper cartouches and markings with matching serial numbers, from the Last Government Contract, shipped in a batch of 200 on January 20, 1891.
Colt Single Action Army (Militia) / Item #C1891 / $27,500.
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Members: National Bit, Spur & Saddle Collector's Association
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