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Original French M-1777 Brass Frame Percussion Converted Cavalry Pistol by St. Étienne Arsenal

Regular price $795.00

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Item Description

Original item. Only One Available. This is a very nice example of the father of American single shot martial pistols, the French M-1777 Flintlock Cavalry Pistol. The pistol was adopted to replace the earlier M-1763 cavalry pistol. This pistol was unfortunately converted later to the percussion ignition system, as was the fate of many flintlocks following the system's introduction.

As originally produced, these pistols were brass mounted with wooden stocks and a cast brass frame, with the trigger guard a separate casting. The lock area would have had an integral brass flash pan, with an iron frizzen and pan cover. The guns were initially produced with an iron belt hook, which was retained by a mounting screw under the brass frame, but later production pistols that were intended for mounted use did not have them. Most M-1777 pistols encountered today were manufactured without the belt hook, or had the hook removed during the period of use.

This example was made at St. Étienne Arsenal, as marked on the brass frame, and definitely was manufactured with a belt hook, which is now missing. The slot and screw hole for it are still visible rear of the trigger. The frame is also marked with a CROWN / L proof mark, which is not one that we are familiar with. The pistol is in good condition, but does have quite a bit of wear. The barrel markings are mostly gone, except for a very faint 79, which would indicate production in 1779. This would be right in line for being produced with a belt hook.

The brass frame has had the integral brass pan removed, along with the frizzen and associated hardware. A cap lock hammer was fitted, and a bolster added to the barrel. The ramrod was also lost at some point. Condition is good, but definitely shows wear. The lock functions correctly, holding at half cock and firing at full.

A very nice percussion converted example of the inspiration for many early U.S. pistol designs. Ready to display!


Year of Manufacture: c. 1780
Caliber: .71" Pistol
Ammunition Type: Lead Ball & Powder
Barrel Length: 7 3/8 inches
Overall Length: 13 1/2 inches
Action: Percussion Side Action
Feed System: Muzzle-Loaded

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