Antique Colt SAA Cavalry Revolver
Made in 1876
This Antique Colt SAA Cavalry Revolver has an interesting and colorful historical past. The Colt was formerly part of the Harold Smith collection and on display at his Nevada casino. Most noteworthy, it was pictured prominently in the book “Famous Guns of the Harold’s Club Collection”, page 83, copyright 1962. A copy of this book is included.
I have seen grips just like these on several other early first generation Colts. For instance, one was on a Colt with serial #180260, made in 1898. This particular gun was owned and carried by the legendary Texas Ranger Frank Hamer who tracked down and killed Bonnie & Clyde. That gun is pictured in Flayderman’s Guide, 9th edition, page 441 and also in Larry Wilson’s book “The Peacemakers“, page 202.
In addition, these exact eagle grips have been attributed to ownership by Leo Carillo, famous movie star and western personality. It is known that Carillo donated a gun at one time to the Harold’s Club Museum – may be worth researching.
Colt SAA Revolver
This Antique Colt SAA Revolver is a U.S. cavalry revolver. Serial #31951 in .45 cal. with a 7 ½” barrel and nickel finish. Most noteworthy, are the carved pearl eagle head grips. An extremely rare U.S. Martial Colt single action army (U.S. Army 1876-1877 contract) that was pressed into civilian usage.
This Colt single action army is in overall very good to fine condition. It shows about 95% old nickel applied over the original military finish. Also, the ejector housing was left the original military blue. Most likey, the carved pearl grips were added at the same time, replacing the original inspected wood grips. These grips are beautifully accomplished and fit perfectly. Lastly, the bore is very good.
The markings are sharp and include all inspection and proof marks. The “U.S.” on the frame has been obliterated but is still faintly visible. All serial numbers match and all parts are original, with the exception of the cylinder pin screw. All the screws are good with undamaged slots. Also, the screws are the original military blue finish.
The gun was likely “liberated” from the U.S. Cavalry at which time the nickel plating and pearl grips were added.
The bottom of the frame is marked “LD” for Louis Draper (assistant to inspector John T. Cleveland) and is identical to the one pictured in “A Study of the Colt SAA”, by Graham, Kopec and Moore, page 219. The underside of the barrel is marked “JTC”, for John T. Cleveland, and “P”. In addition, all serial numbers match with 1951 on the barrel, under the ejector housing and the cylinder. Also, “JTC” and “P” are on the cylinder. A Colt letter is included indicating delivery to the U.S. Government Inspector at the Colt plant, Nov. 11, 1876.
A rare opportunity to acquire a hard to find U.S. Contract Single Action Army.
Clarks Antiques Firearms – Antique Colt SAA Cavalry Revolver – Price $12,500.00