Original U.S. Civil War Colt M1849 Pocket Percussion Revolver with 5" Barrel made in 1852 - Matching Serial 37043
Original Item: Only One Available. The Colt "Pocket Percussion" Model 1849 revolvers in .31cal are essentially scaled down versions of the larger Navy Model 1851 in .36cal, and were developed concurrently. The serial Number 37043 can be found on the barrel, frame, cylinder, trigger guard and grip frame. The loading rammer is marked with shortened number 7043, while the barrel wedge is marked 043. The arbor pin is marked 943, which is almost certainly a factor error, as the revolver is in very good shape, with no signs of the pin having been replaced. This makes this a very desirable "ALL MATCHING" example of the M1849 Pocket revolver, without any parts swapped out over the years.
The serial number indicates indicates the year of manufacture as 1852, well before the start of the U.S. Civil War, so it almost certainly saw service during the conflict. Five shot percussion, .31 caliber with a 5" barrel, in nice tight condition with nice aged finish on the steel. We do not see any signs of refinishing, and there is a bit more oxidation on the left side of the pistol, most likely from being in a holster for a long period. There also is still almost all of the original plating present on the brass grip frame and trigger guard, which is a real rarity.
Additionally, about 60% of the original "Stagecoach Robbery" cylinder engraving can still be seen, which is often completely worn away. Like the frame, it looks like one side of the cylinder was in contact with leather for a long time, while the other parts show little of this type of wear. The COLT'S PATENT marking is intact as well. Often we see these with the markings completely removed from the cylinder, so this is a real treat!
The Colt early two line address is marked in two lines across the top of the octagonal barrel, with the second line partly worn away:-
ADDRESS SAML COLT
NEW YOR[K CIT]Y
It also has the correct [C]OLTS / PATENT on the left frame under the cylinder, though the "C" is missing. The walnut grips are in very good shape, with a lovely color and the expected patina of age. They still have over 90% of the original "Piano Varnish" finish that was applied to these at the factory, with light wear on the bottom of the grips as usually seen. With very little in the way of wear and chipping, these are some of the best grips we have ever seen on a M1849.
The revolver functions well, with solid indexing and a firm cylinder lockup. We did not notice any of the usual finicky behavior we often see with revolvers of this age. The bore shows crisp lands and grooves with a bright finish, and very little evidence of use or oxidation. We almost never see Colt percussion revolvers with bores this nice! All of the cap nipples look to be original and clear, showing only light wear from age and oxidation. The barrel to frame connection is secure.
This is a fantastic '49 Pocket dating from before the Civil War with a nice honest lightly used look, a wonderful acquisition for any collection.
Year of Manufacture: 1852
Ammunition Type: Cap and Ball
Barrel Length: 5 inches
Overall Length: 10 inches
Action: Single Action Percussion
Feed System: 5 Shot Revolver
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