Original U.S. Civil War Vintage Uhlinger Breech Loading .32 Rimfire Revolver - Serial 1703

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is an interesting item with a good story behind it. Just before the Civil War in 1855, the U.S. issued a Patent for a "drilled through Cylinder", known as the Rollin White Patent. It was properly titled "Improvement in Repeating Fire-arms", and was a very important patent that affected the entire industry. Many firearms companies chose to ignore the patent however.

WILLIAM P. UHLINGER of Washington D.C. saw an opportunity, however he patent for drilled cylinders howver was NOT his property, so what he envisaged was a Patent Violation. He purchased gun manufacturing machinery from William Hankins, and started producing his own version of a breech loading revolver. These were made in .32 rimfire caliber and featured a protected "Spur" trigger, and a removable cylinder for loading from the rear. The revolvers were made to a high quality and fitted with fine wood grips. It was not long before he received a Cease and Desist Order, however all he did was change his marketing, using a different name. He marketed under the name of D.CONE, then LOWELL and finally GRANT of Washington D.C.

We do not know how he ended up, but it is felt some 10,000 of these Revolvers in violation of the Patent were produced and sold. Most of these seem to have ended up in the Confederacy. The Rollin White Patent became the property of Smith & Wesson and NOT William P. Uhlinger.

Our example is in particularly nice Condition and is Marked D.CONE WASHINGTON D.C. on the top of the barrel, and has serial number 1703 on the frame, barrel, cylinder, and even the loading gate edge. It is in lovely condition in polished steel finish, the grips showing little use, save a tiny toe chip to the forward of the right hand side. The revolver functions correctly, and still has the spring-retained ejector rammer under the barrel. The action can be a bit finicky, as it is over 150 years in age.

The markings on this revolver are minimal and very small, for obvious reasons and this is a very fine Revolver in great condition, ready to display!


Year of Manufacture: circa 1860
Caliber: approx. .32 cal
Ammunition Type: Rimfire Cartridge
Barrel Length: 5 inches
Overall Length: 10 1/8 inches
Action: Single Action
Feed System: 6 Shot Revolver

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  • This product is not available for shipping in US state(s)
    New Jersey

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