Original British Over & Under Flintlock Double Barrel Tap Action Pistol by G. Sturman of London c. 1820

Item Description

Original Item: One of a Kind. Just acquired from a local auction in Pennsylvania, this is a very nice British over and under pistol with 2 3/8" turn off barrels for loading. On the left side there is a switch so one can decide which barrel will discharge. The pan has a rolling compartment each to serve one of the barrels so effectively the shooter has a second shot at his disposal directly after the first barrel has been fired. They would also choose to fire both at the same time. This type of mechanism is known as a "tap action," and while most were 2 barrel, there were even examples made with 3 or 4 barrels. There is also a slide safety mechanism rear of the hammer, which locks the pan closed as well as holds the hammer at half cock.

The box lock action and barrels are made of iron or steel, with a very nice flat sided walnut grip. The right side of the box lock is marked LONDON and the other side is marked G. STURMAN. / EAST RD CITY RD. George Sturman was a known London gunsmith who operated a shop in Islington, London starting in 1800. The shop later moved to 25 East Road, City Road in London. He was succeeded by his sons Philip and William George, who worked until around 1850.

This pistol was most likely made between circa 1820 and would have been perfect for an overcoat pocket for self defense or for a serving Officer to carry concealed in case of emergency. It is fully functional, and even has a fold-away trigger that appears when the hammer as full cock. The turn-off barrels and frame are numbered on the left side, so that the correct barrel is reinstalled.  Unfortunately at present both barrels are seized in the frame.

A very nice example from Georgian London, probably about 200 years old and still in very good order and condition. Ready to display!


Year of Manufacture: circa 1800-1830
Caliber: about .45" Pistol
Ammunition Type: Lead Ball & Powder
Barrel Length: 2 3/8 inches
Overall Length: 7 1/2 inches
Action: Flintlock Top Action with Pan Tap
Feed System: Muzzle-Loaded

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