Original Early 20th Century U.S. Tooled Leather Single Loop Open Top Holster by Al Furstnow of Miles City, Mont.
Original Item: Only One Available. Here we have a lovely early 20th century tooled leather holster, made by the famous Al Furstnow Saddlery in Miles City, Montana. This was one of the companies that made Miles City famous for it's saddles. As the only major settlement at the time between Billings, Montana, and Dickinson, North Dakota that had a saddlery, business was understandably good. Al Furstnow had first opened his shop in August 1894, before selling part interest to Charlie Coggshall in December of that same year. They purchased the stock of some other operations in the area, and for a time were virtually the only Saddlery company in Miles City.
That changed in 1899, when Furstnow and Coggshall split up and formed rival companies, which would compete well into the 20th Century. In 1910 Furstnow took into his business a skilled Californian stamper, Al Moreno, who would later become his son-in-law. Furstnow's son also helped with the business, which would endure until 1982.
This holster comes from about that time period, and bears the correct maker mark, located on the bottom of the rear flap:
MILES CITY, MONT.
We are not sure exactly what size revolver this is for, but it definitely would be for a medium or smaller size frame. It is definitely too small for a Colt M1873 Single Action Army, and also too small for the Colt M1877 Double Action. It is however just about perfect for a Colt Pocket Navy .38 Rimfire Conversion with a 4 1/2" barrel, and may well have been made for one. The holster itself measures 6 3/4 from the bottom of the barrel compartment to the lip, and 3 1/2" wide at the top.
Condition of the holster is very good, and the leather has matured to a lovely russet brown color. All stitching is intact, as is the leather winding on the rear of the holster, though it could be replacement leather. The embossed cross hatched "wicker" designs are still crisp and lovely. The rivets holding on the embossed leather loop are still secure.
If you were looking for a lovely holster for a medium frame cartridge revolver from the late 19th century, this could be it!
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