Lot 14    

Colt Single-Action Army Revolver Presented to General Thomas H. Ruger as Superintendent of West Point,
2009, Spring Firearms Sale, April 29th
.45 caliber, 7.5" barrel, serial number 1504. German silver front sight, early italic barrel address, two-line patent markings on left side of frame; with an obviously incorrect.22cal stamped on frame at rear of trigger guard. Varnished deluxe burled walnut grips. Blued barrel, ejector, cylinder, backstrap, triggerguard and trigger. Hammer and frame are case colored. The revolover is housed in a mahogany factory casing that is partitioned and lined in purple velvet with wood cartridge block holding 56 original cartridges. All cartridges unspent.

This lot is further accompanied by a January 7, 1874 letter on Colt factory letterhead to Ruger as Superintendent of the United State Military Academy at West Point, from W.B. Franklin, Colt Firearms Vice President :

My Dear General, I have intended to send you one of the new Army pistols for a New Year's gift, but I could not get it ready until yesterday, when I sent it to Gen. K.O. Tyler of New York, to be sent from there to you. I hope that you will be able to give it a good test and develop all of its weak points, which however I hope are few. Certainly Your Friend, W.B Franklin


We interpret Franklin’s admonition for Ruger to “give it a good test” to be a sort of inside joke from one friend and seasoned vet to another. Both Franklin and Ruger had been career military men, thoroughly familiar with the arms of the Federal government. For Ruger to have missed the stamping .22cal would have been inconceivable. In addition, at the time of the gift, the U.S. Army Quartermaster had just signed a contract with Colt for 3,000 of the new single-action .45 caliber pistols.



More than likely Ruger never fired the revolver; it appears to be in untouched condition. An outstanding, and historically important weapon.



Provenance:  
Descended directly in the family of General Thomas H. Ruger


Condition:  
Barrel and ejector rod housing retain ca 97% original blue with some light wear at left side of muzzle and scattered very light pinprick-size brown spots. Cylinder finish is a pleasing mixture of blue thinning to brown. Backstrap and triggerguard retain ca 95% original blue with some very minute flaking. Frame and hammer retain ca 98% original case color. Grips retain most of the original varnish with some tiny nicks on the bottom. Top of case lid has an age crack. Left side of case has some dings. Case still retains most of the original finish. The heirs pried the lid open to find what was inside. Since they did not have a key, there is evidence of their actions. The top latch pulled way and could be easily restored. The interior is in excellent condition. The outline of the revolver shows and the hammer has cut into the lining. The outline of the cartridges can be seen inside the lid.
Sold: $143,750.00
Price includes
Buyer's Premium
      Ask a Question

All Images

Springfield Model 1879 Cadet Rifle,
Lot # 53 - Springfield Model 1879 Cadet Rifle,
.45-70 caliber, 30" barrel with P, V.P. and eagle P. Serial number 205939. '79 rifle rear sight. 1873 dated breechblock. Cadet buttplate, cadet stock with SWP/1892 cartouche and double circle P firing proof. > Item Details
Lot of Two Bullet Molds and Cartridge Box,
Lot # 639 - Lot of Two Bullet Molds and Cartridge Box,
one mold marked Manufactured by the Winchester Repeating Arms Co. New Haven, Ct .22 W.C.F. Other bullet mold with wood grips marked .22 W.C.F. One box of Winchester Centire Fire Cartridges. > Item Details
* Stoeger Luger  Automatic Pistol,
Lot # 167 - * Stoeger Luger Automatic Pistol,
.30 caliber, 4" barrel, serial number 7747. A. F. Stoeger markings on right side of barrel. Blued finish with wood grips. > Item Details
Japanese WWII Sword,
Lot # 188 - Japanese WWII Sword,
26" forged blade, shagreen and brass wire wrapped handle, brass hilt and knuckle bow. Leather scabbard with brass fittings. > Item Details
Two White U.S. Navy Tunics,
Lot # 443 - Two White U.S. Navy Tunics,
first with seaman's knot and label marked Tailored by the Knickerbocker MGG Co. Cynthiana, KY. Right sleeve with embroidered chevrons. Second tunic is void of any markings. > Item Details
Lot of Three Bayonets and Two Scabbards,
Lot # 380 - Lot of Three Bayonets and Two Scabbards,
One model 1816 bayonet, two trapdoor bayonets; one with hook the other with leather loop. > Item Details
45 Star Printed Parade Flag,
Lot # 406 - 45 Star Printed Parade Flag,
glazed muslin, 8" x 12.5", canton pattern with 8-7-8-7-8-7, attached to its original 24" turned wooden staff. > Item Details
Lot of Six Russian Hats,
Colt Single-Action Army Revolver,
Lot # 239 - Colt Single-Action Army Revolver,
.38-40 caliber, 4.75" barrel with two-line address, serial number 78794. One-piece wood grips. > Item Details
Krag Model 1899 Carbine,
Lot # 65 - Krag Model 1899 Carbine,
.30-40 caliber, 22" barrel, serial number 230581. Carbine rear sight. Blue finish with walnut stock and handguard. > Item Details
Brass Three Draw Telescope and <i>J.L. Howard & Co.</i> Kaleidoscope,
Lot # 399 - Brass Three Draw Telescope and J.L. Howard & Co. Kaleidoscope,
telescope is 30.5" fully extended. 9.5" kaleidescope is marked Patented Oct. 17, 1876. > Item Details
Indian War Era <i>Th and Th Infantry Section Camp Custer</i> Photograph,
Lot # 467 - Indian War Era Th and Th Infantry Section Camp Custer Photograph,
7.5" x 43.5" photograph of an active Camp Custer. The Th was the ambulance corp for the North Russia Polar Bear Division. > Item Details
L.C. Smith Double Barrel Hammer Shotgun,
Lot # 536 - L.C. Smith Double Barrel Hammer Shotgun,
12 gauge, 23.5" barrels, no serial number. Blued finish with walnut stock and forearm. > Item Details
Percussion Double Barrel Rifle by <i>Devisme</i>,
Lot # 308 - Percussion Double Barrel Rifle by Devisme,
.70 caliber, made by Devisme. 25" double octagonal barrels, bottom of barrels have proof marks with an oval with crown over DR, and one barrel is marked Canon de Paris and numbered 1477. The other barrel with same proof and is marked Fait par Devisme. Top of barrel marked on flat Devisme 36 Roulevar... > Item Details
Pair of American Eagle Pommel Bookends,
Lot # 588 - Pair of American Eagle Pommel Bookends,
triangular wood blocks with brass eagle head inserted into each block. > Item Details
Model 1851 Officer's Sword Plate and Buff Leather Belt,
Allen's Pepperbox Revolver,
Lot # 229 - Allen's Pepperbox Revolver,
.31 caliber, 4" round non-ribbed barrels. Marked on bar hammer Allen's Patent. Marked on barrels Patented April 15th, Worcester, MA. Nickel-plated finish. Wood grips. > Item Details
* Springfield Model 1903 Rifle,
Lot # 68 - * Springfield Model 1903 Rifle,
.30-06 caliber, 24" barrel marked at muzzle behind front sight SA with flaming bomb and 4-11. Serial number 471027. 2700 yard rear sight. One stock bolt stock, early correct style handguard. Checkered buttplate, triggerguard with flaming bomb and NRA markings (likely purchased by the NRA and used as... > Item Details
ITEMS 1-20 of 20
SKIP TO PAGE: